Do Russian opinion polls make any sense?
In a recent survey of public opinion the Russian social research centre Visiom aimed to find out which countries are the public’s enemies and which are considered to be friends.
It wasn’t a surprise when the survey results indicated that less than one present of Russians hold the USA as a friend. Some 73% stated that the USA was Russia’s number one enemy. Also considered to be enemy countries are Ukraine (32%), the European Union countries leading with Germany (10%). Only one percent said that Italy, France and Japan are friendly countries. Itar-Tass claimed that Russians consider China, Belarus and Kaszahkstan to be the friendliest of nations.
The Visiom survey claimed that Western media is trying to harm Vladimir Putin`s reputation and that 82% of Russians believe the West wants the collapse of Russia. Some 87% are convinced that anti-Russian government material in the Western press weaken Russia`s position internationally.
Complementing the above survey is a Gallup poll conducted some months ago in Russia. Boosted by a groundswell of pride with the annexation of Crimea and following the Sochi Olympic Games, fully 83% of Russians approved of Putin`s leadership in the early summer. This is a 39% increase since 2013. While the military got a 78% confidence rating and the national government received 64%, only 39% viewed the elections as honest – a measurement one cannot just dismiss since it contradicts the same `feel good` perception of Russian governance as a whole. Do the Russians feel helpless in improving elections honesty, are they jaded and accept the futility of getting better elections or do they knowingly accept the elections abuse endemic to the Russian political culture? (Pikemalt Eesti Elu 14. novembri paberlehes)
Yes they’re compatible with ongoing events.