According to a poll conducted by the All-Russian Centre for Studying Public Opinion, there is a growing impression in Russia that the anti-terrorist coalition has failed and the gap between Russia and the U.S. never closed after the September 11 tragedy. Of the total number of respondents, 46% believe there has been no change in relations between the two countries while 28% are sure the gap between them has even widened. Just 16% think Russia and U.S. have become closer, another 37% being apprehensive of the danger of new terrorist attacks and the possibility of a new world war. As the conflict between the U.S. and a number of Islamic states escalates, just 7% of Russia's citizens are prepared to support Western sanctions against Iraq, Libya and Syria while 20% of all respondents believe these countries are Russia's historical allies. The majority, however, remain pragmatically neutral, saying that whatever happens, Russia should try and benefit from this opposition.
Also the polls show that there is no change in the way the Russians have been thinking about NATO over the past years. Of the total number, 56% believe Russia has reasons to be wary of NATO, 30% saying there are no such reasons, 58% saying the West has no reasons to be wary of Russia.
Forest fires in Siberia have been raging for three months already. They have become a disaster not only of Russian, but of global scale. The fires have already scorched 12 million hectares of land