Russia OverviewRussia is the largest country with a population of 143,420,309, and an area of 17,075,400 kmē. It ranks eighth in the world in population. Russia is also a permanent member of United Nation's Security Council. The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) has been split into fifteen countries among which Russia is usually considered the Soviet Union's successor state.
The Russian Federation consists of a total of 89 constituent components. Russia is part of two continents - Europe and Asia. The Russian language is the only official state language
Joseph Stalin was the supreme ruler of the Soviet Union from 1924 to 1953. under Stalin's rule the Soviet Union was transformed from an agricultural nation to a global super power. However, Stalin's collectivization was violently resisted by many peasants, resulting in millions of casualties amid famine and mass repression
Mikhail Grobachev was leader of the Soviet Union from 1985 to 1991. His reforms led to the end of the Cold War and improved relationships between Soviet Union and USA. For this, Gorbachev was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on October 15, 1990.
Aleksandr Pushkin was Russian 19th century author who is often considered as Russia's greatest poet and the founder of modern Russian literature.
Leo Tolstoy is one of Russia's greatest authors. Tolstoy's greatest works are Anna Karenina and "War and Peace".
Anton Chekhov is a Russian playwright and one of the great masters of modern short story. In his lifetime, Chekhov wrote several hundred short stories widely regarded as brilliant.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn is a novelist and winner of the 1970 Nobel Prize for Literature. He was exiled from the Soviet Union in 1974 and returned to Russia in 1994, now residing in Moscow.
Gary Kasparov is one of the strongest chess players in history. His 2851 ELO rating in the July 1999 FIDE rating list is the highest rating ever achieved. Kasparov was ranked first in the world for nearly all of the 20 years from 1985 to 2005 He also won the Chess Oscar four times, in 1995, 1996, 2001 and 2002.
St. Petersburg is also known as the City of Tsars. Some of the city's greatest monuments are the Hermitage, the Russian Museum, the Mikhail Castle, the Summer Garden, the St. Isaac and the Kazan cathedrals. St. Petersburg is a cultural icon and its crown is the State Hermitage Museum.
Moscow, the capital city of Russia, is known for many historic sites including the Kremlin, Red Square, St. Basil's Cathedral and Poklonnaja mountain.
Kremlin is a self contained city with many palaces, armories, and churches. Some of the main monuments in Kremlin are the Arsenal, The State Kremlin Palace, Senate, Tsar Cannon and Bell Cathedral Square, and Ivan the Great Belltower.
Red Square is located just outside of Kremlin. The Red Square is more than 500,000 square feet of open land where people gather to celebrate official state events. During the cold war period, Red Square was used for May Day parades where the Soviet Military displayed its might.
CIA Fact book - the Russia page provides most authentic information about the people, geography, government and economy of Russia.
RussiaProfile provides an independent analysis of Russian news, politics and business.
BBC's profile of Russia.
Wikipedia's Russia page provide a quick overview of the country.
Russia.com provides an information and destination guide for visitors traveling to Russia.