On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the West of targeting Russian youth by attacking religion during his speech announcing that he was suspending the New START treaty.
In his annual address to the Federal Assembly in Moscow, Putin rebuked the West for its “information attacks” against his country and accused the United States of wanting to turn the conflict in Ukraine into a world war.
To counter the actions of the US, Putin said he was suspending Russia’s participation in the 2010 New START treaty that limited the number of nuclear stockpiles held by the US and Russia. Putin noted that Russia was not withdrawing from the treaty entirely, only suspending its participation.
The Russian president accused “the Western elite” of not hiding its goal against Russia, which he quoted as “Russia’s strategic defeat.”
Putin said that since even the West realizes that it would be “impossible to defeat Russia on the battlefield,” it is launching “aggressive information attacks” against Russia that target the country’s “younger generation.”
He accused the West of targeting Russia’s youth by attacking Russian culture and its “religious institutions.”
Putin claimed that the West’s advancement of LGBT causes like gay marriage and trans rights are designed to destroy the family and the “cultural and national identity.” He decried how the West considers “perversion and abuse of children” normal, “including pedophilia.”
Putin noted that the Bible and other religious texts all say that marriage is between a man and a woman and warned that the West is now questioning “these sacred texts.”
As an example, Putin pointed to the Church of England, saying some priests are being forced to “bless” gay marriages. He also cited the Church of England’s recent decision to consider replacing gendered pronouns to refer to God with gender-neutral terms.
Echoing Jesus’s last words on the cross, Putin asked God to forgive the West because “they don’t know what they’re doing.”