Essay: Can Russian Federation Become a Stable Democracy?

More than 20 years have passed since the end of the Cold War. Democracy is growing in many individual countries. Yet it remains to be seen if it can in fact manage to take root inside the Russian Federation. The negative stability of the Cold War era has given way to an increased number of regional conflicts, some old, some new. A number of them have become real terrorism threats for the rest of the world. Crime, the drug trade and weapons of mass destruction have spread. Social ills such as poverty, unemployment, and increasing ethnic and religious tensions are escalating.

The international community has not yet developed a unified coping strategy to handle these myriad problems, preferring to react to a given situation rather than seek proactive solutions and presenting a unified front. The result of this lack of joint policy speaks to the instability of the situation. Experts, some of them anyway, feel that the correct way to a stable and democratic world order must be grounded in dialog and communication if it is to succeed. Led by the UN General Assembly, that dialog has begun and show promise.

Attempts by nations to deal with threats unilaterally rather than in a multilateral fashion are useless and doomed to failure. A classic and recent example is the Bush Administration’s illogical military launch against Iraq. The US was forced to back down and broaden its international coalition in order to right the ship, so to speak and work toward the downturn in the war as implemented by President Barack Obama. The UN continues to work with the United States to stabilize Iraq and enable an American pull out in the next couple of years.

Russia has indicated that it believes the new world order must be predicated on collective mechanisms for handling global problems.

Russian leaders have said this new system must contain as many tools as possible to guarantee world stability. It has signed onto the idea that broader accord and interaction must take place across the globe and must include, G-8, the European Union, China, Japan, India, Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East.

Russia is behind a move to keep the UN Security Council from rubber stamping the use of force in any governmental difference of opinion. Officials argue that each situation must be looked at individually with a preference for preventive interference rather than preemptive strike tendencies as espoused by the Bush Administration’s failed policies and false accusations leading to the conflict in Iraq. The dissolution of the Cold War bloc has led to positive changes for the Russian Federation which continues to build and improve upon its ties to the international community.

History teaches us that democracy cannot be imposed from the outside, as witnessed by American NeoCon attempts in the Middle East. Removing a leader by force only works to destabilize a country to the detriment of the people. Democratic institutions must be created from within with the help of the international community.