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U.S. Needs to Support Free and Fair Elections in Russia

Journal Article
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The increasing prospect of a communist and nationalist victory in Russia's parliamentary elections this month has fueled doubts about whether Russia's presidential election, scheduled for next June, will take place.

Even before President Boris Yeltsin's latest heart attack, the odds were only 50-50 for a democratic transfer of power, which has never occurred in Russia or the Soviet Union. There is a determination to preserve the status quo on the part of those who have prospered under Yeltsin's reign - whether Russia's new banking tycoons, gas and oil executives or the entourage of Kremlin aides that surrounds Yelstin. Re-electing Yeltsin, of course, has been their preferred strategy.

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Initially printed as "Signal Our Support for Democracy," Los Angeles Times, December 11, 1995.

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