Russia » Politics

Khodorkovsky—loner's outcry

Many paths of Russian liberalism

PRAVDA.Ru, in its recent article, has already brought up the issue of Russian liberalism: the issue of abandoned children whose parents no longer want them. However, there already exists a rather lengthy waiting list for those who would like to adopt them.

Today, Mikhail Khodorkovsky claims the post of a foster parent. Well, that’s no surprise. “It is a known fact that Khodorkovsky is the country’s first liberal, that’s why he is in jail”. True, but not entirely true. Russian newspaper “Vedomosti” has published an entire program manifesto, revealing Khodorkovsky’s true face. It showed a new man who supports State’s ideas, while strongly criticizing democrats of the Yeltsin's era.

Perhaps, Khodorkovsky's seclusion triggered him to reevaluate his views a bit. In his article however, he fully disproves those myths that serve as the basis of modern-day liberalism, liberalism of Gaidar and Chubais. “Those, whose main responsibility was to treasure and protect liberal values in out country, have all failed.” “Russian liberalism has been destroyed because first of all, it attempted to ignore some of the most important national/historical characteristics of Russia’s development; second of all, it disregarded those interests of the country's overwhelming majority.” Both of these quotes represent key ideas of the message of the imprisoned oligarch.

He has done something that neither Gaidar nor Chubais has guts to do. Khodorkovsky confesses and tells everyone. He tells government officials to face people, repudiate arrogance and listen carefully to what the lower class has to say. Khodorkovsky admits terrible lies evolving around Yeltsin's elections of 1996.
 
Basically, Khodorkovsky acts as a typical state’s official, and therefore fully supports Putin's power. This is sensational.

To call the oligarch's message a time bomb would be inaccurate. However, it will definitely confuse today’s government officials. He basically puts an end to his former relations. His reproaches are directly aimed at those who demanded his freedom. Khodorkovsky does not even support Khakamada who was sponsored by his close friend Nevzlin.

One should pose a reasonable question: whom does Khodorkovsky address his message? The imprisoned oligarch needs an entirely new generation of Russian oligarchs in order to make his plan. At this point however, no one wants to retire. Chubais still craves control over SPS, Yavlinsky continues to fight for “Yabloko” and Khakamada continues to advocate the idea of “Free Russia”. Everyone wants to be in the spotlight. They will not move aside to let the younger generation occupy their places of Russian liberals.Are there any liberals, on the other hand?

Maxim Artemiev   

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