From Pussy to Patriarchy Riot

My Pussy Rioting Russian Orthodoxy post obviously struck some sensitive nerves. I’ve had a number of comments (all deleted) suggesting that the Pussy Rioters are Jewish, CIA pawns, Western dupes, and are being paid by Putin’s oligarch opponents. Even if these (unlikely) allegations were true, it wouldn’t change the fact that the Russian Orthodox Church and the Putin State are locked in a love embrace which is highly profitable for both.

Over at the London Review of Books blog, Peter Pomerantsev delves into what he calls Patriarchy Riot. While Orthodox oligarchs clerics are duplicitously proclaiming forgiveness (and paving the way for Putin’s mercy), they are also issuing apocalyptic warnings:

Pussy Riot “has helped clarify matters,” Archpriest Dmitri Smirnov says, “any Russian now understands what force really stands behind feminism and punk, put together they are obviously demonic manifestations.” “Liberal society,” Patriarch Kirill says, “will lead to legal chaos and then the apocalypse.” “The first revolutionary was Satan,” Archpriest Smirnov said.

Demons. Apocalypse. Satan. I had no idea that things were so dire in Russia. It sounds like end times. The oil must be running out or graft running short.

Russians need not, however, live in fear. Neither the Orthodox Church nor Putin State will be Left Behind. Salvation has an agent: Putin’s rule is “a miracle from God,” the patriarch said in March. You can get the financial details of this miracle by reading Pomerantsev’s post.

While this highly profitable miracle continues to unfold, ordinary Russians can take comfort in the national-spiritual protection being provided by these (violent) Orthodox burly-bears:

With a final ironic flourish, the Russian chapter of the Hell’s Angels organized a ride in support of the Orthodox Church. Whatever else these Russian biker demons might be doing in Russia, they aren’t supporting the criminals of Pussy Riot.

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