Chronicles of chaos, January 6, Kazakhstan

If you have time to watch the News more likely you saw  reports about the situation in Kazakhstan (former Soviet Republic). 

There’s no doubt that each country covers events differently. 

My husband usually tells me about what he saw on CNN and yahoo news. I usually watch Russian news on YouTube. Unfortunately, I didn’t pay attention to the news last week. So I don’t know what the  Russians said about Kazakhstan.

Today I saw IG posts from a person who lives in Almaty, Kazakhstan. 

Maria (@eng_focus) is an English and Russian tutor, a songwriter, a singer, and an inspiring person.  Last summer she was a guest of my zoom talk show “Russian Speaks”.

Here, I am publishing “chronicles of chaos” (as she calls it) and with her permission. Also I leave a link to her IG account. 

Don’t get hard on me, I’m translating this with an online translator, it’s faster. 😄

January 6

The Internet was turned on only for a few hours at night to warn people about

the anti-terrorist operation being prepared in the next day. Everyone was advised

to stay at home.

The news came that state troops had regained control of the airport. The protesters have firearms. They robbed shopping malls, supermarkets, electronics stores and even a large perfume and cosmetics store all night. No one tried to stop them. There were no police on the streets.

At all. 

In the absence of the Internet, we were in an absolute information vacuum – there was no one sms or emergency alerts. We were not warned about anything and were not given any hope. There was TV, but there rarely appeared “new” news, often they were not relevant for us here at the moment. The feeling that the residents were simply abandoned…

I definitely needed to pick up my son from his grandmother – it can be much worse later,

since gas stations do not work in the city. When those who still drive around the city run out of gas, it would become extremely difficult to move.

At lunchtime, I got information that there was a shootout near the place where my son was. I decided to take a break. I thought something could change in a couple of hours.

About 4 PM I left the house to explore – it’s quiet in our area, there were people walking with children. Some of them carried bags of food. I had enough supplies for a few days, and even to survive for a month. Everything in the neighborhood was closed, but after going a little further I found an open fruit kiosk, in which there were fruits only.

There were no vegetables. I bought some apples. Later I regretted that I did not take the nuts. They are high-calorie, you can hold out with them for a long time.

There was a shop around the corner operating through the window, but you needed to climb over the fence to get to the window. There was no bread or dairy products. Here I understood that it is not known at all when there will be food in the city. 

Large supermarkets have been looted. I bought a chicken – it would last us for a few days. 

I felt that it’s a right time to go for my son. Flair and intuition are the only things you can rely on in such conditions. Like in the good old days, I caught  a car, arranged for the driver to take me there and back. The driver was an intelligent elderly Kazakh. He was joking: They shoot in that direction, if you hear anything, get down. I laughed optimistically in response.

But he himself saw today how four guys got out of the car and just started

destroying a parked car.

I saw the city for the first time since the beginning of the riots. Uprooted benches,

traffic lights, abandoned helmet, burned car. And not a single official/police


The driver said that now the military operations have moved to the area

Ainabulak. It’s far away from us. I exhaled when we passed the place where they shot during the day.

It was quiet and deserted.

On the way back, the driver tried to drive through the square to look at

the akimat building (city hall). The road was closed, the building was not visible – either completely burned down or not visible because of the fog. The wrecked car was lying on its side at the edge of the road. A daredevil rides an electric scooter.

Finally we’re home. A couple of hours later, shooting was heard again, it seemed like the area of the square. My gut didn’t let me down.

Later, news would come that 400 Almaty police officers were injured. Some

died, most in hospitals. 2,000 protesters have been detained, and the clean-up operation continues.

I’ve got a thought – to collect an alarming backpack. But my hope was that everything will end soon, or that a Russian plane will arrive and take the Russians home. 

The officials say the Talibans were operating here – two buses arrived in early December. Severed heads are their handwriting. 

God, give light back to their souls, if they have any.

Author: Elena

Hi, My name is Elena. I am Russian living in the US. My blog is about my life and experience. This is my new hobby. So, please, don't be too hard on me. Thanks

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