No One Saw It Coming: Rise of Christianity in Russia Baffles US Establishment by Stephen Ryan for Russia-Insider
Winston Churchill once described Russia as a “riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.” Churchill’s words ring true today as we see Russia, almost mysteriously, emerge onto the world stage as a military adversary; a geopolitical rival; and a vexing riddle that nobody in Washington, D.C. has quite figured out. Obama got it wrong when he mocked Mitt Romney’s concerns that Russia was a menace to world order, calling the Russians a “regional power.”
D.C.-based Russian foreign policy experts have a dismal track record as prognosticators. Mr. Leon Aron, in Foreign Policy magazine, writes: “Every revolution is a surprise. Still, the latest Russian Revolution must be counted among the greatest of surprises. In the years leading up to 1991, virtually no Western expert, scholar, official, or politician foresaw the impending collapse of the Soviet Union.
After the Soviet Union’s collapse, the conventional wisdom was that Russia would become an inconsequential, backward nation easily ignored by the developed world. But somehow it didn’t work out that way.
We now see Vladimir Putin on CNN gleefully pushing a button launching a hypersonic nuclear missile into the stratosphere, claimed to be “unstoppable” and capable of reaching any city in the United States. Rather than fading away, Russia is confronting the United States, and the two countries have returned to a simmering Cold War-like state of coexistence. Princeton professor Stephen Cohen says that for the first time since the Cuban Missile Crisis, a nuclear war threat is real.
A greater mystery than Russia’s newfound political prominence is Russia’s sudden role as the world’s leading defender of Christianity. It seems inconceivable that former KGB operative Vladimir Putin now chastises Western nations for abandoning their Christian roots. Putin says:
The people in the West are actually ashamed of their religious affiliation and are indeed frightened to speak about them. Christian holidays and celebrations are abolished or neutrally renamed as if they were ashamed of those Christian holidays. With this method one hides away the deeper moral value of theses celebrations. And those countries try to force this model onto other countries, globally. I am deeply convinced that this is a direct way to the degradation and primitivization of culture. This leads to a deeper demographic and moral crisis in the West.
Putin has not only talked the talk of defending Christianity; he has backed up his talk with military intervention. Russia has repeatedly made the assertion that his country’s move into Syria to support the embattled government was, in part, motivated to protect Christians sects who were victims of genocide at the hands of ISIS.
The disturbing irony of the spiritual awakening in Russia is the sudden embrace of religious bigotry by United States media and many powerful members of Congress who represent this country with the motto “In God We Trust.” “The dogma lives loudly within you,” opined Senator Feinstein, unhappy that the person she was speaking to was Catholic. Senator Kamala Harris went in for her own kill shot by expressing her outrage toward a judicial nominee for being a member of a Catholic volunteer organization that would dare to have religious beliefs.
This is Bolshevism – bigotry, plain and simple. Left-leaning intellectuals in this country would scoff and such labels – they are the “tolerants,” after all, the ones with those awful neighborhood signs about “welcoming all” – but then so did members of the Russian Revolution, who had great slogans as well before they started killing priests and blowing up churches.
Today, the United States government is taking away religious freedoms and moving forward into the future with a toxic relationship with people of faith. Major corporations have gathered their torches and pitchforks alongside government and joined the rebellion. Facebook censors images of the crucifix; TV hosts call Christianity a “mental disorder” and everybody laughs; major universities hold classes mocking Christianity with topics like “Christian privilege.” Pro-life organizations are labeled as “hate groups.”