The Jehovah's Witnesses Cult is effectively no more in Russia. The Russian Courts denied the cult's appeal to be recognized as a legitimate religion. Since last year, the Russian government has been cracking down on subversives operating under the guise of faith. The Scientologists, Moonies, Hare Krishnas, Wahhabis, Mormons, and the Japanese Aum Shinrikyo have all been ejected from civilized Russian society.
Tass News Agency reported that under today's ruling, the Jehovah's Witnesses must close all 395 of their Russian conventicles and their assets seized by the government effective immediately.
The judges upheld the Russian Law proscribing the Jehovah's Witnesses on the grounds that their rejection of life-saving medical procedures and their parasitical opposition to civic participation were 'extremist' and 'subversive'. Indeed, they actually are. Most of us in America consider the cult more of a nuisance than anything else; but they are an extremely antisocial sect. For example, while they sponge off all of the benefits of a country, their tenets forbid any positive community service like military, police, jury duty, etc. Americans have the Jehovah's Witnesses to thank for getting The Pledge of Allegiance thrown out of public schools. Yes---the cult has no problem using government services---like attending public schools and suing them in court---but won't lift a finger to benefit society in any meaningful way.
Their cult is so antisocial that they won't even use terms like 'Christian' or 'Church' because they consider traditional Christians to be apostates. They don't recognize Christian holidays or celebrate Mass or Communion. In fact, their theology denies the Trinity and that Christ actually died on the Cross.
Like many other cults, the Jehovah's Witnesses use extreme psychological manipulation to keep its members in line; like encouraging cutting familial and social ties. It is a fact that Witnesses in professions like Medicine and Law are required to report confidential information to the ecclesiastical hierarchy. It has also been demonstrated by research that this cult has a particularly high proclivity to produce significant psychological damage in its victims.
The Corporate Media and the Academic Punditocracy were quick to attack Putin and Russia over this court decision---in spite of the fact that they usually applaud any and all attacks on religion. The truth is that this is not a Freedom of Religion issue. Russia is doing what a government should do and protecting its society from radicalizing influences.
The United States Government used to follow the same policy, incidentally. In 1858, President Buchanan sent the military to Utah because the anarchistic practices of the Mormons required their suppression for the public safety of the territory. The FBI under J. Edgar Hoover shut down dangerous cults and had maintained watch-lists of others. President Reagan aggressively fought the cult-menace as well. The 1980s saw both Satanic Cults and corrupt pseudo-Christian evangelists exposed, and cult leaders like Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, the Reverend Sun Yung Moon, and L. Ron Hubbard brought down.
Putin is a true leader in the tradition of Ronald Reagan. Granted, our Constitutional procedures forbid our government to deal with the threat of cults as directly as the Russian government can; but Reagan showed that it both could and should be done.