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Editorial: Democracy the Russian way

 article about Editorial: Democracy the Russian way

This article belongs to The big Bear named Russia theme.

After more than a decade of silence Russia has again opened its mouth, spitting in every possible direction to demonstrate they not only still have a voice but also strength - political And military.

It doesn't really matter if it's true; it doesn't matter if it is just a demonstration of what they'd like to be. Why it doesn't matter is the fact that it shows the direction in which they would like to go, and the world has no option but to take notice and remember.

Nobody and nothing will stop Russia on the road to strengthening democracy and ensuring human rights and freedoms.
Independent of the situation in Russia, we are not talking about some third-world country here. Russia with its 143 million inhabitants is a power necessary to take notice of.

What are Russia's goals and what does it want to achieve? If former Russian president Vladimir Putin says "Nobody and nothing will stop Russia on the road to strengthening democracy and ensuring human rights and freedoms." Then I'd like to ask - which democracy and which human rights?

It is true the United States cannot say much about Russia in terms of democracy. America has had centuries to develop their current democracy and even now it's a reasonable question if someone is asking whether it's just propaganda and rule of George W. Junior.

Can a country turn a totally different page with just 17 years
Russia has had 17 years to turn their country into something better. It's not just the ruler Vladimir Putin (the fact that the current President of the country is Dmitry Medvedev doesn't leave any doubt as to who is actually behind the power) but the people of Russia as well. A country like Russia, with such a regime could not survive without the support of the Russian people. If there would be a noticable group to force a change in the country, the country would have no option than to change. Yet, many people are still living in the times of the Soviet Union and others just don't see a problem, and thus they can see no reason to change anything.

Can a country turn a totally different page with just 17 years at all? Definitely. Estonia, which separated from Russia in 1991 is without doubt a democratic country. But the difference is that Estonian people have always had different views. Plus we need to consider the size-effect. Russia is a great country in terms of size, population and also diversity in religion, views and goals. In 1991 (and decades and decades before) Estonia had one main goal - to become independent, and that helped the country to evolve the way it has evolved.

Is there any hope for Russia in terms of democracy, human rights and freedoms? It would be stupid to say there's no hope. But it's all still in babyshoes, even the idea of those topics are still in babyshoes. And while all Western countries expect each and every other country to be democratic, who says they all need to be? People are different and democracy should not be a goal all by itself. Democracy is a tool to get from one point to another but nobody can honestly say that it is, or will be, the only way.

This issue of The Cheers is dedicated to Russia and topics surrounding this nation. Don't hesitate to send us your feedback in forms of The Cheers blogs, comments to articles and forum posts. It would be ridiculous to even try to get to the bottom of everything concerning Russia, but we do hope to give you at least some interesting reading on the topic and we hope to get some interesting feedback from you, our readers, as well.

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