Poll: Fewer Russians Believe in Russia’s ‘Special Path’

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – December 12, 2016)

Fewer Russians believe their country has a unique, “special path” to development, a poll by the independent Levada Center has found.

Only 16 percent of Russians said that Russia should have a special path and a special state apparatus for developing the country, down from 24 percent the previous year.

One in ten Russians still see the country as socialist with a Communist ideology, while only three percent believe it is like a monarchy or empire, as Russia was prior to the October Revolution in 1917.

When questioned as to what a “special Russian path” meant to them, 29 percent defined it as “development of the country with greater concern for the people rather than the interests of the elite.” Eleven percent defined it as the distinction between Western and Russian traditional values, while nine percent believed it was that Russia developed in a hostile environment and was constantly threatened with attacks, and seven percent defined the special path as the willingness of citizens to sacrifice for the glory of the Russian state.

The survey was conducted from Nov. 18 to Nov. 21 among 1,600 people in 137 settlements throughout Russia.