Putin’s Unruly Children: A New Generation Aims to Revitalize Russia

February 11th, 2012

Russia’s young people are growing up with more freedom than ever … – Published on Spiegel Online International, by Benjamin Bidder, February 9, 2012.

… No Longer Afraid:

In 2012, many of Putin’s children have grown out of poverty and now belong to a new middle class. Their memories of the hardships of earlier years are as faded as other impressions from their childhood days.  

The Kremlin still uses state-run TV to drive home its propaganda about how Russians should be thankful for the stability they enjoy under Putin. But Russia’s youth hardly watches TV anymore. Instead, young Russians spend their time in the free worlds of the Internet, getting their information and organizing through blogs, Facebook and Twitter. For the first time in generations, an entire segment of Russians can steer clear of government propaganda, depriving the Kremlin of control over large parts of their lives.

This is something new, and it has already led to a change in values and a new view of society. As diverse as they are, Putin’s children are no longer afraid. They stand behind their ideals. They dream of democracy and a free press. Some envision careers as politicians or fashion journalists, while others dream of a nationalist Russia. But does the Putin generation also have the strength to break away from the top-down paradigm in place since the czars – and to change the country from below? … (full long 6-pages-text). http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,814084,00.html

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