Interview To “Ludmila Vinograd” about Russian politics and cultural affairs related with Spain
13 junio, 2014
My interview has been made to Ludmila Vinograd, she is a friend and Russian teacher. Her family is Russian and although she was not borned in Russia she feels a really close link to the Russian nation. At home she was raised with the typical traditions from Russia and shares the culture. She also has raised her children with this values and one of them currently works as lawyer for Russian immigrants who come to Spain. Since she has lived her whole live away from Russia she has made efforts to keep her identity and in every country she has lived she has maintained close nexus with the Russian population in them.
In this interview she has explained what is her opinion about some political topics such as the Ukrainian conflict, nowadays probably the most important one for the Russian population and government, others like to what level is Russia really a democracy and finally she shared with me the point of view of Russian people towards Spanish people and how does the Russian people who live abroad from their home country feel about topics concerning their nation.
Russian people seem to have some kind of affinity with Spanish people. They like our culture and lifestyle. It appears to be similar to theirs. This is really important since Spanish most powerful economic sector is tourism and according to last year’s data, Russian people were majority here in Spain as tourists. The reason why they choose this destination is also because they like the weather and beaches since at their home country they don’t have the possibility to enjoy of this in the same way. Many Russians come to live also to the eastern coasts of Spain and this is also why her son works with them as a lawyer in Alicante.
After this she explained to me a little bit about Russia´s political system and how even away from home she watches the Russian television and is updated with Russia’s news. Russia from what I got from this interview is a democracy, as we know but it cannot be compared for example with Spanish democracy since there everything is more restricted and controlled by the government. She gets this idea since as I said before watches Russia’s television and everything they say is completely directed in their benefit. It seems to her as if there are some restrictions for free media. For her through the television channel when they talk for example about the Ukrainian conflict they not just only give the government point of view but they accuse Ukrainians and the US as the guilty ones.
According to her the fact that Russia is not really the best example of a democracy is probably because of the Soviet Union. For her Russian people are used to have strong governments sometimes way to strong and this has caused ion her opinion the need for the Russian people to have a strong leader which according to what Machiavelli wrote in the prince is necessary for a leader to be efficient. A leader needs to be powerful and kind of despotic to be a good one.
Secondly we talked about some internal conflicts in the Russian nation such as for example the Nothern Caucasus. Why does Russia wants to keep this regions if really no Russian people really live there? The reason why for her was probably because to give up these regions would mean that the government is weak and for them it is important to maintain this status of strong and powerful. But this issues don’t seem to worry too much the Russian population since the news coverage on this topics are really small. Actually just when a terrorist attack is committed is when they talk about the conflict.
Another topic we covered is if communism was still on peoples mind. From the Russians that live out of the country at least not. They are even afraid of it, they don´t like it. It is completely normal since the Soviet Union was a really hard place to live. For the ones who have live it is even considered a threat. But obviously there is probably people who can support it but the country is every day becoming more liberal and open in economic terms.
This lead to the last point which is if right now Russia is trying to build a second soviet Union signing treaties with ex soviet countries and also we talked about the bases Russia is building in Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua as a response to the US bases on Turkey, Japan and South Korea. In her opinion Russia has always that rival which is the US and even if the situation now is more less okay the tensions are always there.
Written by Miguel Ángel Benza