Putin nabs Russian orphans as human-shields to snub US

Taking a queue from the Catholic church, that has raised using children as human shields to an art-form (the Catholics have gone after kids without parents, needy kids, the Girl Scouts, and more in their effort to bash gays), the Russian government is on the verge of punishing Russian orphans, nationwide, in order to take a swipe at Americans, who are apparently the new big-bad in Russia.

The Russians are apparently upset that the US has been taking a stand against corruption in their country.  So they’re bashing orphan children to get even.  It takes a very brave man to beat up a child.

From the Washington Post:

The Russian legislation also draws even more attention to the Sergei Magnitsky Accountability Act, passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama earlier this month. That law places financial and visa sanctions on officials connected to the arrest, imprisonment and death of Sergei Magnitsky, a lawyer and whistleblower. Magnitsky unearthed a $230 million tax fraud and was subsequently arrested by the police officers who he said were carrying out the fraud. He died in jail in 2009. According to his supporters, he had just been given a severe beating.

That tax fraud involved senior officials of the tax agency as well as police. Magnitsky’s client, Hermitage Capital, has tracked millions of dollars of overseas financial transfers by those officials, and unearthed other, similar cases.

The American law struck a nerve with Russian officials, who have vehemently denounced it.

lonely kid child abused

Child via Shutterstock

Then again, the Russian authorities are used to beating people up, and outright murdering them, when it suits their political tastes.

The Russians’ official gay-bashing is becoming legendary, what with their annual ritual of beating up Gay Pride revelers, including visiting European members of Parliament, and Russia’s recent efforts to ban even the mention of the word “gay.”  The Russian authorities also like to beat up journalists and more generally threaten, and punish, the media to a degree that American politicians can only dream of.  Honest judges get murdered too. And human rights activists.

Russian leaders have a little problem with their fetish for violence.  So it’s not surprising that the men who run Russian, including Mr, Putin, have a get their rocks off by beating up orphans. It is, however, very sad.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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  • Naja pallida

    A combination of poverty, unemployment, and lack of adequate access to health care (including contraception and family planning). The same things that creates most of the 100,000+ orphans right here in the US.

    There is a lot of corrupt money floating around the international adoption market, but it isn’t like there has ever been a shortage of orphans to necessitate artificially creating a market. I’d be surprised if that were the case. Sadly, despite the large number of rabid pro-lifers, there are pretty much always going to be more orphans than adoptive families.

  • It’s amazing and good that you do such work, and I imagine against all bureaucratic odds.

  • Perhaps this might have something to do with it:


    Despite clear progress in family planning, the target of desired children at the desired time for a large portion of Russian families has not yet been achieved. According to a 2004 study, current pregnancies were termed “desired and timely” by 58% of respondents, while 23% described them as “desired, but untimely”, and 19% said they were “undesired”.

  • Daffodil’s Mom

    I understand a LOT more about this than, apparently, you ever will. The Russians have (rightfully) been threatening to do this for a very long time, during which yet more Russian children have died (yes, died) here. And if you don’t believe me, just check out a couple of adoption message boards. All of Russia is corrupt — has been since forever, not that I’m defending it, or Putin, but we’re not exactly angels either, ya know.

    Oh, and if you’re truly interested in helping some Russian kids in an orphanage, let me know: my daughter, SIL and family are going back this summer with much-needed supplies and I’m sure they’ll be happy for any help they can get. And yes, they’re legit, even written up a couple of times in their local paper, along with my granddaughter’s soccer team, which is also helping in this effort.

    And if you think American agencies don’t rely on corruption and bribery, uh, I’ve got a nice bridge to sell you — the American agencies have been a MAJOR part of the problem (and expense) in adopting Russian children. You might want to check that out also.

  • Russia is becoming the asshole of Europe—–again!

  • JozefAL

    @Daffodil’s Mom: And YET, I can’t help but be intrigued at the TIMING of this bill. Obama signs a bill designed to punish CORRUPT Russian officials and Putin signs a bill to keep Americans from adopting children (who don’t seem to have any place in RUSSIAN society, except for the orphanages–some of which benefit from the very corruption, and human rights violations, that the bill that Obama signed was intended to stop). The Russians pushed through this bill in near-record time (a matter of WEEKS–not months)
    Additonally, DM, you might want to ask yourself exactly HOW Americans are supposed to “help them” when the Russians have now decided to keep the BEST help from the children.
    Go read up on the background of both bills (the US one and the Russian retaliatory one) before sticking your nose in on something that you obviously do NOT understand. (And, just by the by, most of those “Christianist” adoptive parents are just as disgusting when it comes to American-born orphans and foster kids. The big difference, though, is that OUR orphanages don’t rely on corruption and bribery to place kids.)

  • Daffodil’s Mom

    We have two utterly marvelous adopted Russian granddaughters, and my comment above was intended as a response to both UncleBucky and John.

  • Daffodil’s Mom

    I’m not sure this is wholly retaliation. If you look into it a bit, your stomach will turn at all the cases of Russian orphans being hideously abused by poorly-screened, largely “Christianist” American adoptive parents. And no, these children are not being produced over there to make a profit, for God’s sake — they’re the result of unrelenting poverty, family dysfunction, substance abuse and (big surprise) sex. The orphanage conditions are truly horrible, but many of the caretakers really do try. Instead of dissing these people, try figuring out how to help them instead.

  • UncleBucky

    I have no idea, but there’s 750,000 kids in Russia without parents???? And where are the bio-parents? And what happened that they abandoned the kids? And then finally, were such kids being birthed for money? Like puppy or kitty mills?

    We see them as babies and as kids, but they are people like us. And depending how each one of you readers grew up, you have those memories. And no one deserves to have the memories of being abandoned, maltreated and lonely. Not even being adopted may remove those feelings…

    What’s going on in Russia (and in China)?

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