"Which is worse? The wolf who cries before eating the lamb or the wolf who does not."— Leo Tolstoy

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva's Official Website - The "Lol" in Lola stands for "laugh out loud"

This is from a press release on the official website of Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva, the daughter of Uzbekistan's President Islam Karimov who is widely regarded by human rights groups as the most brutal  dictator in Central Asia:
"Mrs Lola Karimova-Tillyaeva has a profound belief that freedom of the press and expression, as well as freedom to debate and express views about the political developments of our times are fundamental for individual rights, and are an inviolable attribute of every democratic and free society."
Could this statement reflect that  Karimova  has condemned her father's human rights abuses -- like sentencing an AIDS-prevention activist to 8 years in prison for distributing an AIDS prevention booklet -- and is now championing the cause of human rights.  Not likely.

Karimova's press release is a bad attempt to white-wash a French court's decision to dismiss her absurd libel lawsuit against Rue89, a French news website, and Augustin Scalbert, the author of an article on the website that called her "the daughter of a dictator," and accused her of paying an Italian movie star 200,000 euros to appear at a self-congratulatory charity "fund-raising" event. And what worthy cause was she raising funds for? AIDS prevention.  I kid you not.

In announcing his decision,  Judge Boyer noted that  Scalbert’s  article "emphasizes the startling contrast between the charity events they organize and the predicament of those who actually fight AIDS back home.” The Judge declined to award damages to the Defendants on the basis that Karimova's lawsuit was frivolous observing that Karimova "was not familiar with the European standards of freedom of expression."   Un euphémisme grands.

If she thought being called the "daughter of a dictator" was bad, she sure isn't going to like what follows :  

Lola Karimova was described in a 2006 Wikileaked  U.S. State Department cable as an out-of-control party girl.  The cable noted that she  had ownership interests in popular Tashkent nightclubs, a prodigious appetite for alcohol, a thuggish boyfriend and four bodyguards who accompanied them on their regular all-night binge-drinking adventures. Like her sister Gulnora Karimova, Lola enjoys an extremely  lavish lifestyle with a fortune built and replenished through the strong-arming of business "partners," the outright appropriation of businesses, and the misappropriation of public funds.  A 2005 Wikileaked U.S. State Department cable contained a redacted list of Uzbek mafia leaders that Gulnara Karimova had partnered with in various business enterprises. 

After filing her lawsuit, Lola Karimova got a very hard lesson in the Streisand effect, the new media reality that it is, generally speaking, not a good idea to file a lawsuit trying to suppress negative online information. The lawsuit triggers a big bang, that rapidly spreads the bad information exponentially throughout cyberspace. One of the comments to a story on Lola's lawsuit observed that a fundamental principle of pr is that "[i]f you're a dictator's daughter, don't sue media when they call you a dictator's daughter."

In this case, it allowed Rue89 and human rights groups to use the trial as a showcase for publicizing the horrors taking place in Karimov's Uzbekistan. According to the website uznews.net:   
"Uzbek human rights activist Mutabar Tajibayeva detailed her experience of torture and rape in prison in the aftermath of the 2005 Andijan massacre in which hundreds of peaceful demonstrators were killed by government troops or went missing."   
"The courtroom became dead silent as she described what had happened. “They mutilated my body,” said Tajibayeva, who had a forced hysterectomy while in prison. “But they have not broken my spirit.”
Lolal's lawsit has had a ripple effect that capsized Gulnara Karimova's plans to to unveil her new line of clothing at New York Fashion Week when Human Rights Watch convinced the organizers of the event to prohibit her from participating.  When she relocated her fashion show to another venue her quests were greeted by protestors objecting to the fact that child labor is used in the production of Uzbek cotton.

The website www.gotorganiccotton.com noted that "Ms Karimova-Tillyaeva has sought to establish herself in Paris high society since she was appointed ambassador to Unesco, the United Nations'  Paris-based cultural body, three years ago, courting film stars and celebrities."

Quite an ambition for a booze-swilling, rapidly-aging party-girl who lives off the victims of her father's bloody thugocracy.  

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