Cover Osteuropa 9/2009

In Osteuropa 9/2009
Teil des Dossiers Religion im Konflikt

Control, Cooptation, Cooperation
The Soviet State and the Orthodox Church

Nadežda A. Beljakova

Deutsche Fassung


The Soviet Union built up a subtle system for the control and regimentation of the Russian Orthodox Church. The Council of Religious Affairs and the KGB played key roles. In addition to repression and discrimination against the faithful and priests, these agencies relied above all on cooptation and cooperation. The Orthodox Church became a part of Soviet foreign policy. In terms of domestic policy, the regime succeeded in integrating the church. Unlike the Catholic Church in Poland, the Orthodox Church in the Soviet Union was never an oppositional force. The Orthodox clergy allowed itself to be coopted and acted “in the spirit of statehood and patriotism”.

(Osteuropa 9/2009, pp. 113–132)