Sunday, November 19, 2023

US Attacking Orthodoxy Because It is the Foundation of the Russian State, New Moscow Book Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Nov. 16 – A new book attacking the US government’s policies toward world Orthodoxy in general and the Russian Orthodox Church in particular gives its authors the opportunity to reaffirm their convictions that Orthodox Christianity is the foundation of Russian civilization.

            The new book, The US Against Orthodoxy: Systematic Pressure by the US on the Russian Orthodox Church as a Means of Geopolitical Struggle with Russia against the Backdrop of the Ukrainian Crisis (in Russian; Moscow, 2003; 132 pp., full text available at

            The book, by Aleksandr Shchipkov, rehashes old Moscow charges against the West for its criticism of the pro-war policies of the Moscow Patriarchate and support for the independent aspirations of Orthodox churches that once had been part of the Moscow empire; but its most important aspect is its defense of the idea that Orthodoxy is the foundation of Russia.

            That its authors have chosen to promote that idea by analyzing Western criticism rather than by advancing their views directly is an interesting example of something characteristic of much of Russian advocacy of ideas at the edge of official thinking both in Soviet times and increasingly again in the late Putin era.

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