1) Russians are certainly ethnic europeans, and at least in southern russia and ukraine, the purest ethnic europeans.
2) Russians are Aryans (which is a cultural tradition).
3) Russians are christians.
4) Russian is a slavic branch of the indo european languages.
Russians did not go through (a) the enlightenment, (b) the renaissance, (c) the development of a middle class (d) and the development of rule of law in support of middle class economies.
The reason for being being that they were conquered by the mongols and russian territory is more hostile to trade (lacking trade routes) than the rest of europe. (much like canada today).
Russians were heavily enserfed, and only liberated in the 1800’s and then put back under the soviet (communist) version of serfdom. And only recently forced into a middle class trajectory. Once put on that trajectory, certain (((anti-russian))) minorities preyed upon the people, and Putin stopped that predation again. (So, this is the reason for russian preference for power and suspicion of liberalism. )
The communists were successful in industrializing the country but were unable to transfer from their (corruption) bureaucracy to middle class rule as are the chinese slowly doing.
The communists were successful in preserving the family as an institution.
Conversely, in most respects, Russian education is far better than the west.
As such there is an asymmetry between russian culture and education (which is *far* superior) and western commerce and commercial law (which is far superior).
We tend to make all or nothing propositions but this is a mistake. The optimum is the blend of american russian and german cultures. High risk american innovation, disciplined german production, and intolerant russian conservatism.
Personally I love them. The more masculine and feminine and the more traditional and intolerant the better.