It was fourteen years ago on New Years eve, 1999, that President Boris Yeltsin of Russia turned over power to a former KGB agent named, Vladimir Putin. Little did he know that his protege had big ideas about what should occur in Russia. Boris still lived in the shadow of Communist Soviet Union and hoped that both Gorbachev and he represented a new spirit for the Russian people that would lead the nation into an era of cooperation with the European Union and the United States. They felt it was time to end the Cold War and initiate an era of Warm feelings and cooperation with the world. Putin arrived, and so did a group of oligarchs who plundered Russia of its riches on the road to wealth and power. Putin worked with these men including many who were his cronies from the old days of the secret police. Since then, a portion of the population has enjoyed the good life, but only a portion, the majority of people have more access to wealth, but each year they fall further and further into poverty and despair.
Gleb Pavlovsky, a political commentator in Russia raises several issues confronting the nation. “The question is not whether Putin stays on, but whether the horse survives. he has no plan.”He promised to protect freedoms of speech, conscience, the media and property. In those early days he assured the people of Russia they would enjoy the “fundamental rights of a civilized society.” Unfortunately, they now enjoy the rights of a totalitarian society. What next for Mother Russia?