After the events of 1991 Russia was acknowledged by the world community a political and cultural successor country of the U.S.S.R. Although many years have passed after the Dissolution of the Soviet Union, different events which remind the Soviet past of Russia take place in the country nowadays. For example, on the seventh of November traditional demonstration of the Communist party was held in the centre of the Russian capital (Lyskov). Demonstration of Communists, about 3,000 people, was commenced on Moscow’s Tverskaya Street. Hardly the meeting began, the rally was broken up. The reaction of the Russian police was caused by the slogan of the Bolsheviks “Down with police state” which was no authorized for the demonstration. During the demonstration its participants were asked several times to take away the slogan, but they resisted demands. All in all, the demonstration of the Communists showed that, on the one hand, democracy is not consolidated its positions in Russia, and on the other hand, the power and consequence of the Communist party lost its role for the Russian community. Nevertheless, the past event proved that political situation of Russia is far from ideal democratic future. Just think, the traditional demonstration was broken up only because of one slogan which could be left unnoticed if not the reaction of police. Nevertheless, the past event was just another proof that there are great problems with freedom of speech in Russia.
So, what is the essential cause of the event which happened on the seventh of November? Many experts admit that the political situation in Russia is rather unstable. Robert Alan Dahl,Ian Shapiro, and José Antônio Cheibub wrote in their book that “central characteristics of nonfeudal society is that it lacks a genuine revolutionary tradition, the tradition which in Europe has been linked with the Puritan and French revolution” (126). The phrase shows that the recent event was nothing than an evidence of non-democratic, but rather old type of government. Although the Russian government undertakes all possible approaches to enhance national economics, it is obvious that democracy endures the period of stagnation which began many years ago, and nobody knows when the level of democracy would achieve the status of European countries.
Although the Dissolution of the Soviet Union meant for many post soviet countries the future of prosperous Western European countries, nowadays it is obvious that the process of democratization is still in the initial stage. The national communities of Russia and other post-soviet countries wonder whether the Dissolution of the Soviet Union was so necessary and appropriate, because for the majority of the countries the Dissolution was a hard process with negative consequences. Of course, “communist governments endorsed Western principles concerning standards of human rights and hence laid themselves open to international and domestic criticism when they violated those rights” (Huntington 90). Nevertheless, the essence of communism did not suggest any negative aftereffects. As we can see nowadays contemporary “democratic” society is not much better than that “awful” idealistic dream. The event on Moscow’s Tverskaya Street is just another proof for the thesis.
As it has been mentioned above, the recent event in Moscow may be a sign of consistent of the new Russian society. It is not a secret that eastern European culture, due to various historical and cultural reasons developed lagging from other countries. That is why it I not a surprise that politics also lagged: it should be pointed out that Russia was one of the last countries which experienced the last, third wave of democratization. This is the reason to suppose that French and British democracy is not the same as the Russian democracy. In other words, the event during the demonstration on the seventh of November was an inevitable phenomenon.
On the other hand, taking into account the fact that in European countries demonstrations are not an unusual phenomenon, for post-soviet countries demonstration or meeting against these or that legislative act is an event which can be compared with national disaster. For example, France, the home of revolution got accustomed to national protests. If the French society does not like this or that reform, people would not stand apart. Such small demonstrations as the recent one in Moscow are ordinary for France. Nevertheless, Russian people cannot unite to oppose undesirable legislative acts.
Perhaps, such events as on Moscow’s Tverskaya Street take place in Russia, because the new government was formed not so many years ago in contrast to other countries. Democratic principles and guidelines have not become a part of national self-identity. Fall of the previous government and change of the policy require a certain period for formation. People, as well as new authority, should get accustomed to new principles, realize, and accept as a part of their outlook. We may speak about complete formation acceptance of democratic principles only on the assumption of their understanding by the national society. Thereby, Russian people would be able to stand for their civil rights.
Dahl, Robert A., Shapiro, Ian, and Cheibub, José Antônio. The Democracy Sourcebook. Massachusetts: The MIT Press, 2003. Print.
Huntington, Samuel P. The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1991. Print.
Lyskov, Dmitry. “Russian Oppositionists Ruin Their Own Actions”. Pravda. 2010.