The late Martin Malia, professor emeritus of history at the University of California–Berkeley and author of the famous “Z” article, assessed Putin's policy decisions in the pre-Beslan phase in a refreshingly nuanced interview in April 2000. He explained that Putin could not be Peter the Great because the twenty-first century is not the eighteenth, and modernization or Westernization means much more than an army or a navy. He pointed out that he must make Russia advanced technologically, and that means fostering education. Advanced technology and education mean an independent-minded, diverse, civil society.
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