When the Iron Curtain fell, American fundamentalists rushed in with biased Bibles and zealous missionaries to spread their backward and hateful versions of religion. The cumulative effect is that today Russia is more superstitious and anti-gay — even proposing outrageous laws designed to silence and intimidate the LGBT community.
What role did American Hate Exporting Movements (AHEMs) play in this travesty?
I was doing some research this morning for our Center Against Radical Extremism (TWOCARE) and reading the American Family Association’s AFA Journal November/December 1995. There was a full-page ad in this publication headlined: “You can send 1000 beautiful illustrated Russian New Testaments.”
The group behind the ad explained:
“Truckloads of Bibles bound at East European Harvest are going to Russia. East European Harvest, Inc., is a nonprofit, non-denominational Christian Corporation. Its sole purpose is to take the Word of God to the world. The organization is nine years old and fundamental in doctrine and beliefs. This shipment of 25,000 New Testaments is now common.“
The organization framed the issue this way:
The nation is falling apart. Crime and drug traffic are rampant. Suicides are destroying a generation of young people. Economic and political chaos are out of control. Today’s children and young people will be tomorrow’s leaders who will have to rebuild the Russian nation. But without a moral and spiritual foundation Russia will doubtlessly return to a Godless police state. You can help today’s generation of youth discover God by sending a flood of these beautiful books to Russia and the republics. Many thousands have already been shipped to Russia, but we need to send many more thousands.
Has this really been good for Russian society? This one-time superpower is disintegrating into a superstitious country more concerned about angels than economics. Each day, for example, tens of thousands of Russians stand in line for up to 12 hours in frigid weather to kiss a glass covered case that they believe holds the Virgin Mary’s belt.
Fundamentalism is never the answer. Take a look at this 1995 ad to see how American organizations have been working overtime to replace the Iron Curtain, with their very own “Iron Curtain of Intolerance.”
Don’t be naive — there is a reason we are seeing an uptick in anti-gay activity throughout the world. It is because Christian colonialists have targeted vulnerable nations for conversion to fundamentalism.
The sorry results in Russia now speak for themselves.