Think of Russia as Transcontinental country. Even geographically it is complicated as some parts are european, some polar, even middle-east, far-east, historically asia (for example southern Urals + southern Siberia), etc..
As for non-so-obvious-geography-lesson:
I'd say Russia is the successor to Mongol Empire. So it is more like ancient Asian country with some regional Middle East spices including the absence of working law and beheadings of nonconformists.
Oh well, The Great khan Putin... I think this role leaves nothing to answer to those who are in doubt. May even shed some light to the future.