Custom Search

Monday, April 23, 2007

Russian First Elected President Boris Yeltsin has Died

Personally, I am not a favorite advocate for Boris Yeltsin as a man or as the first freely elected President of Russia. I am however appreciative of what he brought to his people and that is freedom. The price of that freedom from the oppression of the communist regime since the days of Stalin came with a heavy price and yet the Russian people survived it. Most of them did anyway.

Former Russian Leader Boris Yeltsin, 76, Dies

By Lee Hockstader
Washington Post Foreign Service
Monday, April 23, 2007; 11:36 AM

Boris Yeltsin was once asked to name his greatest goal as president. He answered that more than anything, he wanted tranquility for Russia.

Ultimately, Yeltsin failed to achieve it in his own term. But the burly Siberian who was Russia's first freely elected leader in 1,000 years did more than anyone to raze the rotting communist superstructure of the former Soviet Union and build from its ruins the framework of a newly democratic and capitalist country.

Yeltsin died today at 76, a Kremlin official announced, without providing further details. The Interfax news agency quoted an unidentified medical source as saying Yeltsin died of heart failure.

Like Peter the Great, the 18th century czar he once mentioned as his model, Yeltsin was no great democrat. In ordering the war on the breakaway southern region of Chechnya in 1994, he was responsible for the violent deaths of more Russian citizens than any Kremlin leader since Joseph Stalin. As president he tolerated--and even authorized--the excesses of a system in some ways as corrupt and morally adrift as the one it replaced.

Yet like the autocratic Peter, Yeltsin took hold of a stultifying, hermetically closed country and flung open its doors to fresh ideas, methods and influences.
"He created a new kind of power," said Vladislav Starkov, editor of the weekly newspaper Argumenty i Fakty. "He created a new economic situation. A new psychological situation. A new international policy. A new Russian mentality. Of course, there were many mistakes, stupidities. But today we live with and take for granted absolutely new political ideas and institutions . . . This is Yeltsin's legacy."
– The Washington Post

Boris Yeltsin was not the picture perfect first president other than the fact that he was the one man with the power and convictions to end the madness of his government and replaced it with his own corruption ridden rule. Beside his best efforts to profit from his own government the larger idea of a free Russia stuck with his people and sometimes the good comes with the bad.

Ending the Communist Party and its oppressive mentality of government that suppressed the people of Russia and any state that the former Soviet Union touched is Boris Yeltsin’s legacy. Americans only have to look ninety something miles to the south of the Sunshine State of Florida to see the continued existence of the failed experiment of the communist mentality and government system.

I admire Yeltsin for what he did to truly end the misery of his people but I frankly can not shed a tear for what he did as President of Russia to make sure it continued. His own people will tell his history and that is how it should be.


*****Buzz Tracker has linked to this post...

Books that are relevant to this post…

Technorati Tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Generated By Technorati Tag Generator

Labels: , , , , , ,

AddThis Social Bookmark Button


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home