Staunton, November 3 – “Change” is an extremely powerful political word, but it doesn’t mean the same thing for all those who use it, “Nezavisimaya gazeta” says. In Russia today, both the Russian people and the Russian opposition want change, but the first wants it without any radical break with the existing system while the second wants Vladimir Putin ousted from office.
Thus surveys show that the Russian people are angry about many things – “Nezavisimaya gazeta” publishes today an article suggesting just how angry many of them are about how many things (ng.ru/politics/2015-11-03/1_regions.html) – but polls suggest that they back Putin and don’t want any fundamental change that could threaten stability.
The opposition, in contrast, the paper’s editors say, want Putin out of office and a radical change of the Russian political system; and they hope that eventually Russian society will come to agree with them on that point. As a result, the extra-systemic opposition has put off its planned protest from November to December (ng.ru/editorial/2015-11-03/2_red.html
“The Russian extra-systemic opposition is not in a position when it can act ‘on its own.’ It does not have a single deputy in the Duma; it lacks organization and financing; and it is cut off from the mass media,” the paper’s editors point out.
Consequently, if the opposition leaders want to expand their influence beyond those limited numbers of Russians who already support them, “Nezavisimaya gazeta” concludes, they need to adopt “a more mature tactic than waiting for society to come to accept their vision of reality.”