Colin Powell had an op-ed published in Russian newspaper Izvestia:

While he praised the two countries’ cooperation on issues ranging from the war on terror to the fight against AIDS, Mr. Powell also warned that the U.S.-Russia relationship “will not achieve its potential” unless the two countries share “basic principles. …” “Russia’s democratic system seems not yet to have found the essential balance among the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government. Political power is not yet fully tethered to law,” Mr. Powell wrote. “Key aspects of civil society–free media and political party development, for example–have not yet sustained an independent presence.”

Just in case you were worried:

“As far as I was concerned, it wasn’t in any way an attempt on my part to interfere in the internal dynamic of Russian political life,” he told reporters. “It was in the spirit of friendship that I discussed all these issues. …” Mr. Powell made no mention of concrete consequences for Russia’s actions, and political analysts said it was unlikely the Bush administration would take matters that far.

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