We believe there are many of us – American Russians, Russian-speaking intelligentsia – who can effectively interact and communicate across the world, who have open minds, friendly attitude, who can make their contribution, to promote the growth of democracy, rule of law and civil society in Russia. We can assist open-minded Russians with European values in their struggle for the rule of law.
What we can start with:
1.establish communication via Internet
when our volunteers would go online in the social networks, blogs, civil organizations websites etc., to provide Russians with free of propaganda and many-sided information. Needless to say Russian mass media – main TV and radio channels are being censored. There is mistrust in Russian authorities as well as mistrust in democracy values. People are disappointed and disoriented.
Main subjects to discuss:
a) anti-Americanism in Russia . After a short break (1990-s up to early 2000-s) the anti-American wave is back to Russia. Though many American patterns came into a daily life in Russia, anti-American sentiments are high among all generations and groups of society. According to the independent Levada Center all-Russia poll performed in March 2010, 73% of Russians believe the USA to be “the aggressor” , striving to take “all countries in the world under it’s control”; only 8% see the country as a“defender” of peace, democracy and order in the world”. Popular idea“:Americans are looking forward to Russia’s collapse to capture Russian natural resources, to enslave us” Unfortunately even those Russian activists who believe in the rule of law and have democratic values support this idea. We can discuss this issue, giving examples of our own lives in the US, so that they can make difference between the truth and
b) how democracy works in the countries with European values, how it works in the US, sharing our own experience. Democracy is a very important subject now, when a big mistrust in democratic values is widely in Russia.Though Russia has democratic institutions, they usually don’t function in the democratic way. We can share with them ways Americans stand for their civil rights, key factors that make democratic institutions work here in the US.
c) ways development of market economy and free competition works
d) American society experience of fight racism and xenophobia, in the fight of minorities for their rights.
2. Next step can be developing Independent online media and social network for Russian speaking people
3.Arrangement of traditional communication means such as bilateral contacts, professional or student delegations exchanges promotes more opportunities for citizens of both Russia and USA, to get better understanding of each other’s values.