A Low, Dishonest Decadence: A Letter from Moscow

It is shortsighted to judge Russia's progress by superficial materialist measures--or have we forgotten what the Cold War was really about? At a deeper social and spiritual level, the country remains in peril.

Issue: Summer 2003

After 15 years of tumultuous change in Russia, Moscow is booming and
parts of the city give the impression that they are part of the West.
Tverskaya Street, the capital's principal artery, is filled with
strollers, late model cars and outdoor cafes. On Novoslobodskaya
Street, coffee houses are filled to capacity and consumers crowd the
new "Friendship" Russo-Chinese shopping center. Everywhere, restored
buildings reveal the beauty of Moscow's 19th-century architecture
and, at night, the illuminated façades of the buildings and gleaming
cupolas of the Orthodox churches create an atmosphere of dynamism and
resurgent grandeur.

You must be a subscriber of The National Interest to access this article. If you are already a subscriber, please activate your online access. Not a subscriber? Become a subscriber today!