Staunton, Feb. 24 – Given Russia’s demographic collapse and the threat of , transformation as a result of people coming in from culturally different Central Asia and the Caucasus, a group of Duma deputies has created a special staff to promote the coming to Russia as permanent settlers up to seven million “ideological” immigrants from Europe and the US.
The primary target, Duma deputies like Dmitry Gusev of the Just Russia-For Truth Party sy, are people in those countries who are already members of the Russian Orthodox Church but in addition, the group hopes to attract others who are angered by the cultural policies of Western countries (ritmeurasia.org/news--2023-02-24--kto-poedet-v-rossiju-ideologicheskaja-immigracija-64849).
Such people may be attracted to move to Russia, Gusev says, because they oppose what they see as official policies in the countries where they are now living directed against traditional families, promoting Black Lives Matter, “the terrorization of the white population, and LGBT propaganda.
Because Russia has suffered a loss in indigenous population over the last seven years of more than three million people, the supporters of this movement hope to attract enough people from European countries to improve Russia’s demographic numbers without what they see as the negative and even criminal impact of people from Muslim countries.
To date, the number of Europeans or Americans who have chosen to move to Russia for such “ideological” reasons is small, far smaller than the number who did in the 1920s and 1930s who came to take part in the building of communism. But the group is hopeful and has extended its reach into social media.
The Moving to Russia group has “more than 2,000 subscribers,” the group says, and the group’s site, Russian Faith, which appears in ten languages, reaches people across the globe. But so far, organizers admit, only a dozen or so families from the US and Canada have expressed interest in moving let alone actually done so.
Nonetheless, the group is likely to expand its efforts less perhaps in the hope of attracting millions of European immigrants to Russia than in intensifying cultural divides, especially in the United States, where supporters of traditional values see their own government as the enemy and Putin’s Russia as their friend.