Cablegate Chronicles: Kazakhstani Elites Have Hobbies

This is an installment from our on-going series on the adventures of American diplomats and the people they monitor. The red button below will take you to another random episode.

new story button.png


A U.S. ambassador details the hobbies of Kazakhstan's political elite.


FROM: ASTANA, KAZAKHSTAN
TO: STATE DEPARTMENT
DATE: APRIL 17, 2008
CLASSIFICATION: CONFIDENTIAL
SEE FULL CABLE

¶1. (C) Kazakhstan's political elites appear to enjoy typical hobbies -- such as travel, horseback riding, and skiing. Not surprisingly, however, they are able to indulge in their hobbies on a grand scale, whether flying Elton John to Kazakhstan for a concert or trading domestic property for a palace in the United Arab Emirates. This cable recounts several instances in which Embassy officers have learned of, or witnessed, the recreational habits of Kazakhstan's leaders. End Summary. -------------- Sun and Horses --------------

Browse the Cablegate Chronicle archive.

¶2. (C) President Nazarbayev, like many of his countrymen, has a strong affinity for horses. In 2007, emboff visited the presidential horse farm XXXXXXXXXXX. The farm is located on the outskirts of Astana in a residential area, but is surrounded by a high-fence and security guards. Inside the gates are a large stable, indoor and outdoor riding arenas, and a clubhouse with a pool table, sauna, and exercise room. Emboff toured the stable and saw approximately forty horses from various parts of the world. XXXXXXXXXXXX told him that Nazarbayev visits the horse farm on occasion, though not too frequently. XXXXXXXXXXXX said that Nazarbayev's wife -- Sara Nazarbayeva -- never accompanies him, XXXXXXXXXXXX Taszhargan, an opposition newspaper, printed a sympathetic article about Sara Nazarbayeva XXXXXXXXXXXX

Presented by

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Global

Just In