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  Tuesday, November 12, 2019
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Russia did not lose the Cold War, but rather defeated its own totalitarianism
Russia did not lose the Cold War, but rather defeated its own totalitarianism, a Kremlin official said Wednesday. Responding to Western criticism of reforms in Russia, deputy head of the Kremlin administration Vladislav Surkov said he hoped that there were more people in the West who wanted a strong Russia than those who wanted to see the country weak, and said those who saw the events of the early 1990s as a victory in the Cold War were wrong. "We do not believe that we were defeated in the "cold" war. We think that we have defeated our own totalitarian regime," Surkov said. "And that's the difference in our assessment - we defeated ourselves, for a start." He also said losers are normally looked upon with either disdain or pity, but that Russia should not be seen in this way. "We do not consider ourselves a defeated nation," he said. "We simply believe that we have chosen our own destiny." President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday that some countries saw Russia through the prism of old prejudice and considered the country's revival as a threat. But he dismissed accusations that Russia was pursuing a neo-imperialist foreign policy and called for common principles of conflict resolution to be applied throughout the world. And Surkov was similarly defiant over accusations of democratic backsliding, saying that Russia had done more than Washington or London to help democracy in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. "It was Moscow that democratized this gigantic space, which is now being revitalized," he said, adding that recognition of Russia's contribution to democracy would lead to increased respect for the country abroad.
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