Russia Demands U.S. End Pro-Democracy Work –

Russia pushes back on democracy NGOs?

The Russian government has taken a number of actions in recent months to bring pressure on nongovernmental groups and clamp down on political dissent, including a new law requiring any organization receiving aid from abroad to register with the justice minister as “acting as a foreign agent.” Russia also hiked the penalties for libel and slander, a move that seemed intended to intimidate critics of government officials.The aid money from Washington supports a panorama of organizations and advocacy efforts, including Golos, Russia’s only independent election monitoring group, which played in an important role in exposing fraud in parliamentary elections last December.Those disputed elections led to a series of large anti-government protests, which continued through Mr. Putin’s election in May to a third term as president. The most recent protest, just this Saturday, drew tens of thousands of people on the streets of central Moscow.

via Russia Demands U.S. End Pro-Democracy Work –


2 thoughts on “Russia Demands U.S. End Pro-Democracy Work –”

  1. Putin’s so-called “concern” for the United States pushing democracy on its citizens is a cop-out. Russia has mastered the art of eradicating what it doesn’t in the name of something completely different.

    To draw a domestic example, the Republican base at times tries to tighten voting regulations on those who don’t have voter identification. They claim that it is fighting voter corruption, when it seems that the true reason is to limit the voting abilities of those who would vote Democratic.

    The same thing goes for the Kremlin. Are they against NGOs who push democracy on their people? Perhaps. But more to the point is the fact that they don’t like what some NGOs are doing, so they try to find a way to take them down in the name of something else. It’s like a reverse straw man argument.

  2. Thoroughly enjoyed the last sentence- that’s right, Putin is trying to make a free and fair election. Ha!

    I was hoping for a more international look at the opinions voiced by other countries about the US and our efforts to spread democracy, but alas. This article was not Russia telling the US to stop meddling in the affairs of other countries, but rather Russia saying, “Get out of my business!” To comment on the topic that sadly did not come up in the article, I don’t think Democracy is the best option for every state. This is a question that is constantly being examined by political scientists, but there has never been an affirmative answer.

    I personally believe, that encouraging democracy is not what we as America should be focusing on. This is largely due to the fact that I do not think that encouraging democracy will solve the problems that it alludes to solve. Human rights issues will still occur, recessions/depressions in the economy will occur, plagues of diseases will still hit entire countries, and people will always be mad about something. I think a better route for the US is down the international track. If the US could improve the effectiveness of the UN, there is so much we could do! If multiple states, autocratic, democratic, and everything is between, could sit down together and determine problems, outline solutions, and agree to follow them, the world could change. Democracy is not the save-all solution, but I stand to be corrected if needs be.

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