This Yaroslavl Forum thing is really turning into a clown conference, with comments like this:
“I categorically do not agree with those who claim that there is no democracy in Russia, that it is ruled by authoritarian tradition,” Medvedev told the forum. “There is democracy in Russia. Yes, it is young, immature, inexperienced — but it is democracy. We are at the very beginning of the path.”
However, he added that “freedom of speech, of assembly and meetings, is being realized in practice in precisely established legal limits.”
Added to pearls of wisdom like this from Vladislav Surkov, and we’ve got the reboot of Sovereign Democracy.
In answer to the U.S. criticism, Medvedev’s first deputy chief of staff Vladislav Surkov told reporters that Russian had its own type of democracy. “Russia has its own democracy. … There are good cars and there are cars that break down, but they are still all cars,” he said. “I don’t know if I am a democrat, but I am a free person.”
More to come.