Forgiving my horrible Yakov Smirnoff joke, I found this simple little story on Yahoo! as to why Russian airlines are in trouble. If Tony Kornheiser and John Madden won't fly in these United States, I don't think they'd dare enter the formerly soviet skies.
Licenses are given with only 1/3 the amount of flying time as here. Instructors get paid about $2 a day. They use very old and outdated aircraft. It goes on and on. Freaky stuff.