Russia’s Transition to Autocracy

Issue Date April 2008
Volume 19
Issue 2
Page Numbers 5-15
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Under Putin’s rule, Russian policy has considerably hardened both domestically and internationally. It has gone from a mixture of oligarchy, democracy, and anarchy to a regime of autocracy with some fascist features, and from an effort to imitate and join the West to a verbal aggressiveness towards the United States and an effort to reassert Russia’s domination over its former empire. An important link between the two evolutions is to be found in the post-imperial nostalgia of the Russian population, in the neo-imperial ambition of its leaders, and in their fear of the spread of “color revolutions” among their neighbors.