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There's a quote going on in some discussions in Russian. The quote itself is well-known and have about 100k hits if you sum different variations on Google.

Я всегда думал что демократия — это власть народа, но вот товарищ Рузвельт мне доходчиво объяснил, что демократия — это власть американского народа.

In English that will be:

I always thought that democracy is the rule of the people, but comrade Roosevelt here explained me to me in no uncertain terms that democracy is the rule of American people.

I can't find quote itself mentioned in printed materials and most people seem to agree it is later invention by a 3rd party, just like some other popular "Stalin quotes" like "no man, no problem".

So, did Stalin say anything like that?

And seeing how answer is likely, "no", maybe somebody can also identify a real author of this quote?

  • Not that it really relates to your query about whether it was said or not, but can you explain the meaning/context of that phrasing? Is it a statement that he felt Roosevelt only deemed a "democracy" that reflected American values to be legitimate or democratic? Or something else entirely? – PoloHoleSet May 24 '17 at 14:27
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    It refers both to US apparent habit of declaring whatever they not like un-democratic, thus leaving US as the "only true democracy" and to its habit to use "democracy" as excuse to project its will no matter what it is, effectively making "democracy" into "what America likes/wants". – Oleg V. Volkov May 24 '17 at 14:53
  • Okay, that's what I thought. Thanks for confirming and satisfying my curiosity.. – PoloHoleSet May 24 '17 at 14:56
  • Hm, guess I'll change power -> rule in translation to make it more clear. It'll be also almost word-by-word definition of "democracy" from wiki. – Oleg V. Volkov May 24 '17 at 14:58
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    It's fairly subtle, but it's there. Maybe putting quotes around the second "democracy" in the translation, and italicizing "American" would be enough. – PoloHoleSet May 24 '17 at 15:01

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