Goat Boy wrote:Plus as far as I’m aware China aren’t actively inteferrring in western elections and murdering people on our streets.
How many dead is it now?
Dodgy deaths on British soil linked to Russia is not a new thing but obviously in recent times you’ve had Litvinenko and the attempted murder of the Skripals. There are other ones that have a stink about them like German Gorbuntsov and Alexander Perepilichnyy. And that’s just in Britain of course. Of course one murder is one too many.
Rayge wrote:Who feels there has been a regression? And who was optimistic? I'm not being arsey here (well, no more than usual), it's just that I genuinely don't understand this point of view. What do we know of the lives of 'ordinary people' in Russia now, and whether they were better or worse when they were part of the Soviet Union? And are we talking the USSR of Stalin, Kruschev, Brezhnev or Gorbachev, all of them very different once you get past the bogeyman tag? Plus the USSR has been gone now a quarter century, and maybe those who were optimistic about it have done better.
I know I'm banging the same old drum, but really, why are we bothering to have strong opinions about something so remote from our own experience?
Well, I remember feeling optimism during that period - bear in mind I'm younger than you of course - and you had Yeltsin who seemed relatively harmless (also pissed). I'm sure there was dodgy stuff going on, especially around elections but compared to Putin he seemed pretty likeable and benign, you know?
Under Putin we've had ...
Widescale corruption amongst Russian athletes
Interference in western elections
Increasing influence of the church
Gay rights under attack, "propaganda" law.
I understand it's not like some of this stuff has never occurred before in Russia but, yeah, I do think thing are getting worse under Putin. What it's like in terms of general quality of life for your average Russian, I don't know. I imagine for gay Russians things are worse and there is a climate of real fear for example. Obviously people on the ground can see these things very differently and clearly many in Russia like a strong man who wrestles bears, rides bareback on horses and who sticks it to the West but then lots of people like prog too, you know?