Reading Russia: It’s No Mystery

Issue Date April 2009
Volume 20
Issue 2
Page Numbers 39-41
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The idea that the Russian government is a mystery-let alone a Churchill-evoking riddle or enigma-is absurd. The real issue has been the willful, even enthusiastic, blindness of political leaders and commentators regarding the true nature of Putin’s regime which-with its insistence on strict hierarchy, unquestioning clan loyalty, and a stern code of secrecy-is essentially a mafia. It is a mistake to believe that the members of the Putin regime have a long-term plan or a guiding ideology. Their only priority is holding tight to power and the immense personal fortunes that power protects. The leaders of the Free World must recognize that acknowledging the reality of a dictatorship is a critical step in combating it.

About the Author

Garry Kasparov is chairman of the opposition group United Civil Front and co-leader of the prodemocracy coalition The Other Russia. He is a former world chess champion.

View all work by Garry Kasparov