In the Thick of It

A blog on the U.S.-Russia relationship
We at Russia Matters tend to treat claims by state-owned pollsters with a grain of salt, especially when it comes to political rankings. Nevertheless, we feel compelled to share the results of the following survey conducted by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM) in May, as it gives some fascinating insights into ordinary Russians’ thinking about nuclear-, biological- and chemical-weapons threats to their country.

When asked to assess what actor is most likely to launch an attack using weapons of mass destruction against Russia, respondents said they view the United States, al-Qaeda and “Chechen terrorists” as the first, second and third likeliest sources of such an attack, respectively. (A decade ago Russians ranked those potential attackers in the reverse order.)
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