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His article is not about Russia, but about coverage of Russia. He is making the absolutely correct point that there is this new meme in the media that Russia is being both criticised for exercising its strength and dismissed for being weak and that there is an element of wishful thinking in the second.

As you know, I tend to think that indeed Russia is weaker that it thinks it is, because its strength is predicated on oil prices rather than real development, and it has terrible problems like the declining population and widespread corruption. But as I also think that oil prices will remain high, that strength will remain and, more importantly, the pride that Russians feel in their country apprearing to be strong and a force to be reckoned with (and their President symbolises this extremely well, thus his very high popularity) will last.

So we have to deal with Russia seriously, instead of alternating bluster, dismissal and panic.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Fri Sep 29th, 2006 at 04:00:04 AM EST
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