MOSCOW, Sept. 26 (UPI) -- Russia's security services are getting more power over national politics than they had in the Soviet Union, a leading Russian analyst has warned.
Andrei Piontkovsky, a leading independent political analyst told the Moscow Times that under President Vladimir Putin, the Russian security services now have more power over national politics and federal bureaucracy than they had in the Communist era.
Putin has announced that he intends to this year to end the direct election of Russia's 89 regional governors. Around half of them have already joined or are seeking to join Putin's United Russia Party.
"United Russia is the modern Communist Party," Piontkovsky told the Moscow Times. "That is why bureaucrats want to join it. The only difference is that the Communist Party had control over the KGB (the old Soviet secret police). Now the Federal Security Service (FSB), the KGB's heir, has control over United Russia."
"Andropov's dream has come true," Piontkovsky said, referring to the ambition of longtime Soviet KGB Chairman Yuri Andropov to bring the Soviet political system under direct KGB control.