Reasons for the Strongly Centralized Power Structure in Modern Russia (Essay Sample)
the paper is an analysis of the reasons why power in russia is strongly centralized. the key reasons as expounded in the paper are;
1. to protect russian propaganda within and outside the country. the centralized dictatorial power severely punishes and murders political opponents. it is not a popular regime and therefore it heavile relies on propaganda to give it a 'good image' both locally and internationally
2. to protect the elites who drive russian politics
3.the regime is not democratic even though it claims to be
Reasons for the Strongly Centralized Power Structure in Modern Russia
The Russian Federation operates under a centralized political system in which the prime minister and the president wield the most power. The latter is the head of state, while the former oversees the government. The Russian president leads the executive division of his administration and seeks election by the general population for a six-year term (Pariona). He engages in foreign and domestic policymaking, ambassadorial nominations, global discussions, and the signing of international agreements and treaties. Besides being the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, the Russian president can make legislation without the assessment and endorsement of the Legislature and other lawmaking bodies (Pariona). The Federal Assembly and the United Russia Party constitute the weak multiparty political system, with the Federal Assembly encompassing the Federation Council (the upper house) and State Duma (the lower house). Propaganda, influential clans, and intimidation drive contemporary Russia’s strongly centralized power structure.
Many local and overseas observers link Putin’s immense popularity to propaganda. His approval surpasses a personality craze that reaffirms his power in Russians’ minds (Snyder). The president has received an 85% and above approval rating over the years. Through this publicity, the leader asserts his muscle and the need for power centralization. The presidential administration controls the three major television channels transmitting from Moscow, Russia’s capital, reaching around 80 to 90% of the population and practicing severe self-censorship (Snyder). The other broadcasters serve a limited audience and rarely discuss politics. As a result, the Russian regime manipulates the population to retain its dominance. Communication network monopolization has strongly shaped public opinion on Putin’s leadership and governance system.
Influential clans comprise reformers, oligarchs, conservatives, and liberals, who drive the elite Russian politics. Two conflicting alliances emerged during the Medvedev presidency. The first coalition, which was headed by Arkady Dvorkovich (Medvedev aide), Aleksandr Voloshin (veteran Kremlin representative), and Igor Shuvalov (First Deputy Prime Minister), supported Medvedev’s run for a second term. The other group, Vladimir Yakunin (Russian Railways chief) and Deputy Prime Minister, Sergei Ivanov, favored Putin’s election (United States Department of State). They differed over export taxation, oil extraction, state investments, privatization, and energy sector management. These aggressively competitive coalitions constantly form and reform and maneuver situations under the disguise of legal and political institutions, the Duma, the presidency, and the courts. They sometimes undermine government policies and decisions and leverage their influence to force Russian leaders to work with them to avoid problems.
Although Russia claims to be democratic, the reigning administration’s penchant for intimidation proves otherwise. Anyone who challenges the government suffers the wrath of law enforcers and the military. For instance, an opposition candidate and ex-deputy prime minister during Boris Yeltsin’s tenure, Boris Nemtsov, was killed on Moscow’s streets near the Kremlin in February 2015 (United States Department of State). The arrest of five Chechens and another suspect, who was executed while in custody in Chechnya, resulted in a jury trial for Nemtsov’s death. The five individuals pledged their innocence. At the time of the murder, one of the defendants, Zaur Dadayev, held a position in the Chechnya Interior Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs as a deputy commander. He confessed to killing the victim before recanting his statement, asserting that intensive torture in detention compelled him to confess. He also implicated Ruslan Geremeyev, his colleague in the North Battalion, as the mastermind behind Nemtsov’s slaying (United States Department of State). Instead of prosecuting the five culprits for murdering the politician, the court ruled that they were members of an organized gang that illegally purchased, carried, transported, and amassed weapons.
Furthermore, several government opponents have died mysteriously. In “Here are 10 Critics of Vladimir Putin Who Died Violently or in Suspicious Ways,” Filipov names ten individuals who died after publicly questioning the president’s mode of governance. One of
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