Russia: Yeltsin's Enemies

Communists, ultra-nationalists, rival reformers and disgruntled soldiers are all breathing down the President's neck

Warnings of a coming dictatorship have been as common in Moscow this winter as street-corner complaints about high prices. Down through Russia's history, authoritarianism has been the rule, reform and democracy the rare -- and brief -- exception. For that reason alone, the odds seem to dictate that President Boris Yeltsin's efforts to install a new system will founder and the strong hand will follow. Even Yeltsin has raised the specter. "I have faith in our reforms," he said on a visit to France last month. "But if they fail, I can already feel the breath of the redshirts and Brownshirts...