One World Film Festival
This Wednesday our TV showed one of the movies that got an award during this film festival. It was called Zdroj / The Source. Unfortunately the other TV channel was just showing the final football match between Czech Rep. and Norway (to qualify for the World Champs), so I think only a minority of people actually saw the documentary.
I am really sad I got to see the movie only now and not in the spring before my trip to Caucasus. It was about Azerbaijan and the oil. Very disturbing movie. Though not too surprising for me any longer. It showed how desperate lifes do the oil workers have. How insignificant salaries they get, it is about their "houses" that are built straight in the oil fields, about their cows that eat grass next to an oil spills, cows that are bred for milk and cheese!
The movie talks about an Azeri State Oil Company, as well as BTC (Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan) oil pipeline that is built by several international oil companies (with BP in charge) and the people that had owned some land which was later selected as the one where the pipeline was to be lead. The pipeline is nearly done in Azerbaijan, there are last parts to be finished close to the Georgian borders (the mountainous area).
I was really confused. The movie showed (and I believe it) that some local authorities had falsified documents of the land owners, had claimed it does not belong to the farmers and thus did not pay them for the land (money that the BTC promised to give the farmers; I guess the money ended up in the pockets of the local authorities). Imagine poor people, poor farmers whose only wealth is the little land they have and suddenly they have nothing. And there is no authorities, no power to which they can turn to for a help.
The corruption is huge, the want for money and power great, the compassion with locals none and that is why around 70% of Azeri people live in poverty. A country that owes huge oil reserves... a country that will most likely join Venezuela, Nigeria, Sudan etc. in their faith. A country which could have become if properly managed well developed with great living standards for its inhabitants.
That makes me so damn mad, seing how some people are low, greedy and without principles. People who have the money, the position and the power to make the change for all the others and who only choose to make more money, get higher position, more power and to make more people more desperate and needy. What a prospect for life of all of us.