Russia is a vast country that stretches across the Eurasian landmass. Its territory includes a diverse group of people, including ethnic Russians and a large number of other groups who follow disparate religions and cultural traditions.
While it was once an empire, Russia now has a population of about 142 million people (including ethnic Russians). The country’s economy is highly industrialized and its infrastructure is well-developed.
Its economy is based on a variety of natural resources, particularly iron, coal, oil, and bauxite. It also has a large agricultural sector and produces many foodstuffs and textiles. It is an important energy producer, and it has extensive reserves of gold.
The country’s climate is influenced by several factors, including its latitudinal position, its continental position, and the presence of water bodies. Its northern and central regions have relatively cold winters, and areas away from water can be very cold.
A major part of its economic history was built on its ability to mine a wide variety of minerals, including copper, silver, zinc, and gold. These resources are essential for making everything from medicines to clothes.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has moved toward a more modern system of government that emphasizes democracy and freedom of speech. This has resulted in many changes in the country’s political system and culture.
Russia has a diverse ethnic heritage and is home to more than 120 different groups of people. Most of these people speak a language other than Russian and have distinct cultural practices.
As the Russian empire developed, a strong emphasis was placed on unification and the integration of ethnic groups into the state. This process was often referred to as Russification. The government also sent Russians into majority non-Russian areas to further unify the population.
During the Soviet period, this process of Russification was continued and expanded. It involved a variety of measures, including removing the use of the Arabic alphabet in Muslim areas and sending ethnic Russians to resettlement programs.
This policy led to the deportation of over 3 million ethnic Russians to Siberia during World War II, a large number of whom died from disease or malnutrition. This resettlement program left a legacy of ethnic and religious divisions in the Russian population that still exists today.
In the 17th century, a number of notable leaders began to develop Russia’s governmental structure and industrialization. One of the most significant was Peter the Great, who became a tsar at the age of 10 and worked to build the empire. He was a visionary, and his efforts to incorporate Russian technology and ideas into the Russian government paved the way for modernization.
Despite these advances, Russia has struggled to live up to its ambitions and capabilities. The country has long been a geopolitical rival to the West, and its leadership lacks the territorial, economic and soft power that it needs to compete with the Western world. In recent years, however, the Kremlin has refined and intensified its use of covert and unconventional tactics to gain advantage over its adversaries.