Corona in the former Soviet Union: miracle herb and sauna

Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow says he smokes the steppes to keep the corona virus in check.

Some people who have certain talents and qualities in pandemic times like this are now at the hour. An impressive example of this is the authoritarian Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow. His predecessor Saparmurad Nyjazow, who paid homage to a bizarre personality cult, was a master of isolation. Neither man nor mouse came into or out of the Central Asian country (women ditto). 

Berdimuhamedow’s paranoid fantasies of foreclosure and state-ordered declarations of honor of his subjects are anything but strange. Now the 62-year-old, who has headed the state since late 2006, is harvesting the crop. According to official information, which however cannot be verified, there is as yet no corona case in Turkmenistan. The state media – there are almost no others – are silent about the virus. 

Nevertheless, Berdimuhamedow does not seem to be quite sure of the reliability of his statisticians. Access to the capital city of Ashgabat has now been secured with numerous checkpoints. Only residents of the metropolis are still allowed through. Traffic between the individual provinces was also restricted.


Nevertheless, the President, who worked as a dentist in his previous life, still has some good advice for his compatriots in the quiver. “For millennia, our ancestors have developed national methods to fight addiction and prevent various infectious diseases,” he said recently at a government meeting.

Then he recommended burning a native wild diamond family called Hamala “to destroy the virus that is invisible to the naked eye”. Berdimuhamedow should know, because he is also a proven connoisseur of flora: after all, he wrote a book about the plants of Turkmenistan. The Turkmen Service of Radio Free Europe incidentally reported that state employees had started to disinfect government buildings, schools, and cemeteries with the inflamed miracle herb. The announcement is twice a day.

Simple mind 

Also, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko’s duration (only 26 years of service) is currently drawn from a solid knowledge base. The former head of a collective farm is a rather simple mind, but a pragmatic through and through. 

“We have survived other viruses, we will survive this,” he said on state television. The Belarusians should now mainly work in the country, he said. “There people work in the fields with tractors. Nobody talks about the virus. Tractors and fields will heal everyone. ”He immediately gave his ministers another health tip: sweat a lap in a dry sauna. At 60 degrees Celsius, the corona virus is dead.

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