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Majority Of Russians Believe "Secret Groups" Conspiring To Undermine Their 'Traditional Values'

No, this isn't necessarily about 'Russiagate' or NATO encroachment per se, but a new poll has found that almost two-thirds of Russians surveyed believe there's an organized plot afoot to undermine their traditional national values and society

Recently the Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTSIOM) published the results of a survey of 2,000 Russians which suggests the majority of the Russian public believes there's a broad anti-Russian conspiracy targeting the 'old values' namely things like family, heterosexual monogamy, and patriotic history.

Vladimir Putin inside a Russian Orthodox cathedral with a bishop. Image: EPA via Al Jazeera

The VTSIOM is Russia's oldest and most recognizable polling group and is linked to the state. 

In recent years, over two decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union, both the Russian state led by President Vladimir Putin and the one-thousand-year-old Russian Orthodox Church have emerged as working in tandem to combat what's perceived as the secularizing and anti-Russian inroads of Western Europe

The Moscow Times presents the survey's findings within the context of this recent return of Russian church-state conservatism as follows

In recent years, Russia has positioned itself as a defender of conservative values in the face of European liberalism. Some analysts argue the Soviet Union fostered a world view that encouraged conspiratorial thinking, a mind-set that promotes the same type of thinking today. 

Sixty-six percent of Russians polled by VTsIOM agreed with the statement that “there is a group of people who seek to rewrite Russian history and replace the historical fact in order to hurt Russia and diminish its greatness.” 

And perhaps of more interest is that 63% surveyed agreed with the statement that “a group of people are trying to destroy the spiritual values formed by Russians through the propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations.” 

The survey didn't get into the specifics of precisely how this might occur; however, high profile incidents like police crackdowns on gay pride parades in Moscow in recent years have spotlighted things like same-sex marriage, which remains illegal under in the country.

From a survey by the Russian independent Levada Center, via PN

After a number of attempted public demonstrations, Moscow city and district courts unanimously agreed to ban 'pride parades' for the next 100 hundred years

Other notable incidents include the arrest and imprisonment of the band Pussy Riot — a group most Russians consider sexually explicit and offensive for their history of shocking displays, including public orgies, which Putin himself has condemned as degenerate  but which has been lionized in Western press and by political leaders as defending human rights and basic freedoms

Meanwhile an analyst for VTSIOM, Oleg Chernozub, is cited by The Moscow Times as saying the poll's results suggest the Russian public is growing more astute to a "quite obvious" attempt to subvert traditional values and revise history.

And interestingly, RT's report of the same VTSIOM survey notes of a related poll conducted this summer "that 57 percent of Russians believe that the US claims of successful manned Moon missions were lies and that the documented proof of these missions was forged".

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