The phenomenon of color revolutions has occupied a prominent place in Russian politics for a good reason. The major threat of color revolutions as modern political warfare designed by Western countries deeply affected the political process in Russia since 2005. It may have appeared that the imperative of resisting them was the result of a non-democratic regime reacting to neighboring countries’ uprisings. Some portrayed it as authoritarian learning. This paper suggests that the counteractions stemmed from the interests of disunited Russian elite groups who were seeking opportunities to reinforce their dominance and capitalize on the idea of significant external threats. The phenomenon reshaped the balance within elite groups and led to the consolidation of law enforcement networks on the eve of Putin’s third term. Further, the prevailing perception of color revolutions discouraged any elite splits that could lead to proto-democratic rules.
Recent concerns around the declining support for democracy worldwide add urgency to the question of why ordinary citizens desire a democratic system. An emerging theory is democratic knowledge, which argues that knowing more about the rights and liberties provided by a democratic system leads citizens to want democracy as a result. This paper tests this theory in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, where conventional wisdom suggests that citizens will be less familiar with the features of a democratic system. Using the World Values Survey, it finds that democratic knowledge is a stronger predictor of democratic support than modernization, political learning or political socialization. Moreover, this effect is strongest amongst Ukrainians who grew up in the post-Soviet period, indicating that democratic knowledge is a powerful antidote to the disillusionment that flawed or limited democratization may bring.
This article is devoted to the analysis of public support for the contemporary political regime in Russia. The author points out the narrowness, artificiality, and instability of public support for the political regime of Vladimir Putin. Manipulation and bribery are regarded in the article as the main strategies of providing public support for the regime. The author shows that weakness of the Russian economy represents a serious problem for public support for the regime. In the conclusion of the article the author makes a forecast that in the nearest future in Russia are expected mass protests which may lead to the collapse of Vladimir Putin’s political regime.
This article addresses the political effects which the multidirectional activity of both the state and civil society institutions have on the voluntary movement. The state seeks to provide support with the purpose of indoctrination, whereas the aim of public organizations is civic activism. The authors of this paper confirm the hypothesis about the direct political impact of these efforts using the evidence of an empirical study of voluntary movements that was conducted in 2019 in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug—Yugra. The authors conclude that just as state support provided to voluntary organizations does not incite the ‘pro-government’ discourse of their actions, so their ‘civil’ origin does not stir up oppositionist attitudes. Moreover, the state’s efforts to indoctrinate or block political socialization can trigger the opposite response, where volunteers start to act opportunistically and non-profit public organizations, designed to be the mainstay of civil society, can easily be transformed into agents of state policy.
The Russian Constitutional Court (RCC) has over time developed a practice of adopting so-called “Positive inadmissibility decisions” (Pozitivnoe Opredelenie) which complements (but also undermines) the existent formal procedure of only delivering decisions on merits with Judgments (Postanovlenie). The paper explores the uses of this peculiar practice. I show that the Positive inadmissibility doctrine is used by the Court to overcome the rigidity of the formal procedure where this is necessary for reasons of inter- or intra-organizational expediency. To do that I construct and analyze quantitatively a unique comprehensive dataset of all decisions handed down by the RCC in 1995–2015. I show that “Positive inadmissibility decisions” are handed whenever a subpar case is deemed too important to be simply dismissed: in particular, if it is submitted by a powerful petitioner, or when the case is assigned to a longer serving member of the Court for judicial report.