Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov

Freedom House wears blinders as it continues to discredit Russia

Freedom House paid attention to Russia again. According to expectations, American “human rights activists” did not say anything good about Russia, nor did they say anything positive about Iran, China, Venezuela and Pakistan.

A report from the US-based organization said that the governments of the above-mentioned countries trample democracy both domestically and internationally. The “efforts to discredit the human rights organizations and control the media” were also mentioned in the “truthful” report.

Vladimir Zharikhin, Deputy Director of the Institute for the CIS, told Pravda.Ru that the ratings from Freedom House are very conditional. “Since Freedom House is an American organization, it gives adequate ratings to other countries,” the scientist said.

“If Coca-Cola were the company to evaluate the quality of soft drinks, it would place Russian kvas (a very popular refreshing beverage in Russia, also known as bread drink – editor’s note) somewhere on the 136th place. The situation is the same here. That is why, I believe that one should not pay much attention to all these things from the United States,” Vladimir Zharikhin said.

“They trusted the economic ratings for too long and had the crisis in return. The ratings of various companies on international stock markets were exaggerated deliberately. These phenomena are identical. In the long run, they disregard the events happening at Guantanamo and give high rating positions to the United States. It just means that all other ratings that they publish are doubtful,” the scientist of politics said.

Alexander Brod, the Director of the Moscow Bureau for Human Rights, believes that one should have not a painful reaction to such reports. “One should approach the report (by Freedom House) as the work style of this organization,” he said.

“The author of the report highlighted big problems with the human rights in Russia, and it is hard not to agree with it. However, I believe that they do not take account of the fact that there were extremely serious social and economic problems in the country during the 1990s, when people were not paid anything – salaries, pensions, allowances – for months. Elements of black PR were used during elections, everyone disregarded xenophobia issues. Strangely enough, Freedom House did not have any remarks or protests about all those things,” Brod said.

The report, Alexander Brod added, did not express any concerns about the discrimination of the Russian-speaking population in the Baltic States, for example. The human rights activist also paid attention to the fact that Freedom House did not say anything about Georgia ’s aggression in South Ossetia , nor did it react to the biased coverage of the war in the Western media.

“There is opposition in Russia. The Russian opposition forms its forces and regional divisions. There were no such things during the 1990s, there was no anti-corruption law back then either. Freedom House is wearing the blinders which do not let it see the objective picture,” the human rights activist said.

Anton Ponomarev

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