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Timothy Frye in Meduza on How the 1990s Shaped Russian Politics
September 5, 2023

Timothy Frye (Marshall D. Shulman Professor of Post-Soviet Foreign Policy) discusses with Meduza how the 1990s shaped Russian politics.

The great failure of the 1990s was the failure to build institutions like a legislature, a party, a business association, or strong regional governments that could have constrained Putin from consolidating power in his own hands. Political scientists always assume that politicians want to take more power. And what prevents them from doing so are groups that can threaten them with removal from power if they try to take all power into their own hands. In Russia, there were powerful governors and business people, but they acted as individuals rather than as organizations.