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Russia Is Falling Further Behind

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In December 1999, not long after Boris Yeltsin chose him to be his surprise successor, three months before he was first elected President of Russia, Vladimir Putin posted on a government website what would turn out to be his only campaign document.  “Russia at the Turn of the Millennium” had been prepared by an economist who had been a colleague of Putin’s in St. Petersburg.  It would be published later that year as part of First Person: An Astonishingly Frank Self-Portrait by Russia’s President. The 5,000-word narrative noted “the dramatic turn in world developments in the past 20-30 years” –