This inquisitive gopher hangs out under a rocket launchpad in…

At Kazakhstan's Baikonur cosmodrome, a news cameraman inexplicably left his camera rolling near a functional launchpad. What occurred next was equally random — a gopher popped out of the ground to investigate and/or gnaw at the still-filming camera. Those readers wary of coincidences can happily postulate that this… » 7/20/12 7:50am 7/20/12 7:50am

In Kazakhstan, cosmonauts must go through winter wilderness training…

When cosmonauts and astronauts now return from a long-duration space mission on board the International Space Station, they are always coming home on a Soyuz capsule, landing in northern Kazakhstan. The Kazakh Steppe is known for its bitter winters (I just checked the local weather in Ayagoz, Kazakhstan and there is… » 1/21/12 3:45pm 1/21/12 3:45pm

Marijuana harvesting in Kyrgyzstan sometimes involves naked horseback…

The Chu Valley between Kyrgyzstan and Kazkhstan is the home to an extremely hardy type of marijuana that resisted Soviet-era efforts to stamp it out. Law-breaking marijuana farmers in the region harvest the crop normally, but they also procure their stick-icky using a tried and true method that's been around for… » 9/10/11 9:35am 9/10/11 9:35am

Niiice: Borat's Homeland Gets A Space Pyramid

Perhaps in an attempt to shake off the backward, cousin-marrying, antisemitic image it got from Sacha Baron Cohen's film Borat, Kazakhstan has hired British architects Foster and Partners to build a futuristic Pyramid Of Peace And Reconciliation. Built in just two years at a cost of 35 million pounds, the building is… » 11/04/08 3:40pm 11/04/08 3:40pm

Kazakhstan's Highest Peak is a Pyramid-Shaped Alien Ship

Astana, Kazakhstan, has a new entertainment center that looks like a transparent pyramid-shaped alien ship. Designed by British architecture firm Foster and Partners, the structure arises from a 220 yard elliptical base and provides an indoor park, shopping venues, shelter from extreme weather conditions, and—perhaps… » 1/28/08 8:00am 1/28/08 8:00am