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Word Count: 985
Since the fall of the Soviet Union Russia has tried to jumpstart a stalled economy One of the biggest obstacles has not been establishing trade outside of the country but instead it is the existence of a strong organized crime community and black market The organized crime in Russia not only controls many aspects of the economy but also controls or appears to control a part of the government as well The magazine article focuses on a man named Boris Berezovsky Berezovsky started in business as a small time automobile dealer Using his PhD in mathematics he has amassed an empire worth millions of dollars Berezovsky has used his fortune to help Russian ex-president Yeltsin achieve the presidency When Yeltsin stepped down as president Berezovsky used his money to help current Russian president Vladimir Putin attain office Now Putin is attempting to crack down on the organized crime activities of the oligarches and bring some stability to the Russian economy The article is an excerpt from the book Godfather of the Kremlin by Paul Klebnikov and follows the career of Berezovsky He shows the violent side of the underworld in Russia and the devastating effect it has had on the Russian economy Since the fall of communism organized crime has been involved in almost every aspect of the Russian economy Organized crime is involved in everything from tobacco to car parts and the cars themselves This article centered on the car parts and auto industry as an example of what is facing Russia The article begins with an American Page Thompson going to Russia after the fall of communism in an attempt to sell car parts and used American automobiles to Russian dealers He sets up a deal with Berezovskys company and then asked for a letter of credit to show good faith Thompson is told to go to Switzerland where a letter will be waiting for him at an office belonging to Forus Services
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