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In December 1917, weeks after coming to power, the Bolsheviks launched a drive to confiscate all firearms from the hands of the Russian populace. They never gave them back.Old habits die hard, and Russia's restrictive gun legislation was never seriously softened over the past 100 years, despite regular calls to the purpose, the latest of which came last week from a pro Kremlin senator.Those who oppose firearms are wary of the temperamental populace, predicting shooting rampages and an increase in murder rates.But some skeptics claim the real reason the Kremlin is not allowing the public to own firearms is fear that armed citizens will turn their guns on the country's notoriously corrupt bureaucrats.

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