Few people may have noticed, but this month marks the two-year anniversary of the 1998 Russian default crisis. Maybe not an event worth celebrating, but it is worth noting. With everything Russia has endured during the past few months, it is tempting to think the country is again in crisis. The tragic loss of the nuclear submarine Kursk exposed Russia's deteriorating military and, in a larger sense, the country's weak infrastructure. Meanwhile, the war in Chechnya may have slowed, but has certainly not ended. Even the fire this week in the Ostankino TV tower, the second tallest free-standing structure in the world, seems to point to a country tottering on the brink of disaster. Nonetheless, it is worth remembering that Russia actually is improving, albeit at a snail's pace. The country may not exactly be a poster child of economic reform, but it is slowly moving down the path toward a market economy.