She goes there frequently and grew up there. She says that the anti-immigrant sentiment in Russia is disturbing and ominous, reminiscent of the things we read regarding the increasing essentialist extremism of mid-30's fascism. I'm not saying everyone who is against immigration in Russia is a neofascist, but I do think that rising xenophobia, stoked by state-run media, plays a role, a very large role, in public opinion on immigration.
Russia currently is one of the few major countries in the world that has a declining population - largely due to the high cultural rates of alcoholism among the population and the poor public health resources to deal with diseases such as HIV. Immigration would bring more people and talent into the country.
I believe that it would be in Russia's best interest to allow more immigration. Russia is a bit closed off from the rest of Europe and Asia and the world. It would help if they expanded their population and had a more diverse range of viewpoints. Maybe this would help them learn tolerance, which is something they sorely need right now.
Russia should not allow more immigration because they are experiencing such financial stress that they can barely handle the problems they have with their own population. Immigration usually means people eat up more resources, and Russia can simply not handle that kind of thing right now. They at least need to build up their own industries first.
Immigration in Russia is for two typical reasons. The first is that there is some business opportunity in Russia that the Russians have invited the immigrant to explore. The second is that life in the home country is worse than Russia. Putin has made it clear that immigrants will conform to Russian society or they can move on. Russian society has no desire to adapt to make a refugee feel comfortable. If the refugee is so uncomfortable in Russia, they can go back to where they came from.
Although the olympics paint a grand picture for Russia, and create hope that it can clean up some of its act, Russia has some ways to go. Democracy can take time to instigate, after all it took time in Europe after the fall of the Roman empire. What Russia needs is to connect with other 2nd world countries and learn from them, like India or maybe China.