On why the persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia shows the cruelty of the Putin regime


“ All authoritarian regimes loathe minority religions, perhaps because religious groupings are one of the most powerful ways of imagining a world that might be different. Tolerance is a late and perhaps unnatural development in human history but that only increases its value. Freedom of religion means freedom to be wrong or it means nothing at all. And in the case of the Witnesses, with their astonishing stubborn patience in the face persecution, we can see how the content of their beliefs really doesn’t and shouldn’t affect their right to hold them. At a time when most of the concern about Putin’s Russia is concentrated on its behaviour abroad, the attempted suppression of the Witnesses shows just how much damage he can do within his own borders ”

Andrew Brown, ‘Why Putin’s persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses should worry us’, The Guardian


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