Logically, society should have changed its attitude toward international terrorism after Beslan, which represented one of society's three main fears. However, this did not happen and society does not consider the threat of war as a particularly topical problem, Mikhail Gorshkov, director of the Institute of Comprehensive Social Studies (Russian Academy of Sciences), noted.
This threat still ranks fifth or fourth just it did 2-3 months ago. Everyday national troubles seem to be more important, 52%-54% of Russian citizens said that they lived below the poverty line.
"The latest opinion polls show that Russians have low opinion of the state's ability to solve the problem of terrorism: 75% of respondents are sure that the authorities cannot protect the population from new terrorist attacks and only 18% percent think differently," Leonid Sedov, a leading Levada-Center research associate, said.
Until law enforcement agencies demonstrate that they can defeat terrorists, the Russian public opinion will not change as regards war against terrorism," Mr. Gorshkov said.