BATTLE OF THE BANKERS

IN POSTCOMMUNIST RUSSIA, THE SPOILS GO TO THE WELL CONNECTED. NOW THREE TOP CAPITALISTS ARE IN A VICIOUS FEUD THAT INVOLVES WEALTH AND POWER

In the old days of the Soviet Union, Communist ideologists taught the simpleminded notion that the bourgeois capitalist world was run by small groups of monopolists who manipulated governments and the news media from the comfort of their wood-paneled offices.

Now, in the new Russia, the half-dozen or so richest men in the country seem to be living out that teaching. These new oligarchs, all fabulously rich thanks mainly to their intimacy with the country's democratic leaders, control as much as half the country's gross domestic product and many of the most powerful media outlets. Last year they played a major...

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