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History is not bunk

There is nothing unusual about Russia's flawed transition, it repeats the experience of many other weak states plundered by their own corrupt elites. Utopian capitalist ideologues, inside and outside Russia, have made things worse by justifying corruption in the name of the greater free market good

By Anatol Lieven   October 1998

A chinese communist diplomat once told me: “I always read the Financial Times, because capitalists cannot afford to lie.” If the ambassador later had the mischance to invest in Russian bonds, he may be feeling a bit less complimentary now. It is not that western reporters or commentators have lied about Russia’s liberal capitalist revolution. It is not even that they have believed Russian lies, although many have. The most striking and depressing aspect of much optimistic western analysis over the past seven years is that many commentators have seen and reported the evil of what was happening and yet…

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