Russian Germans – the new extremists?

It’s not news that the separatists in eastern Ukraine receive and still receive support from foreign volunteers who join their fight against government forces (as e. g. mentioned here). But an article from the German “Zeit”-magazine could suggest that the fight in eastern Ukraine might become a Mecca for Russian Germans (“Russaki”)  who consider the Ukraine conflict as a struggle between the spoiled and gay Western  and Christian (orthodox or in this case baptist) values.

The article tells about a baptist priest from the Russo-German community who traveled to the conflict zone in Ukraine where he met one of his former students fighting (and dying) with the separatists. According to him, many members of the Russo-German baptist community despise Western values – the article often refers to homosexuality as a main focus of Russo-German baptist despite – and some are even ready to risk their lives in east Ukraine in an alleged fight against “gay Europe”.

The article further claims that many members of the Russo German community in Germany live in a Russian parallel society – similarly to Muslims who also live in their own societies within European countries. Both groups are easily radicalized, one fights in the “jihad” while the other fights for presumed (pan)Russian interests and Christian values in eastern Ukraine.

The Zeit article comes with an interesting point of view, but one has to be cautious with drawing conclusions to generalize whole groups of people. Normally this should be taken for granted, but nowadays it seems that even natural things should be mentioned additionally.

The article is currently only available in German, but if you understand it or feel good with Google Translate, it is worth reading.

P. S.: Those volunteers fighting on Ukrainian side might have something in common with the other side’s volunteers when it comes to homophobia. And by the way: While Spanish volunteers for the separatists have been arrested in Spain, one could ask what happens/happened to the volunteers from the other side returning to their home countries (e. g. Sweden).

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