More untruths in the Guardian about Russia

The Guardian is lying again.

This is their recent headline about a European Court of Human Rights judgement against Russia:

Russian ‘gay propaganda’ law ruled discriminatory by European court

Law banning promotion of homosexuality breaches freedom of expression rules, says European court of human rights

There are two lies here. Firstly; the law referred to is concerned with propagandizing to minors – not universally as is said here. Secondly, the law concerned relates to “non-traditional” relations, not just homosexuality. It is the Guardian, which is obsessed with homsosexuality, which interprets it in this way.

The law in question is titled: “Purpose of Protecting Children from Information Advocating for a Denial of Traditional Family Values”. 

The law was passed by the elected Russian parliament (not imposed by a repressive dictatorship) in June 2013.

This is the text of the law published by an official government Russian newspaper. (It translates well in Google Translate). The reader can see that the law is concerned with minors and with ‘non-traditional’ sexual relations in general.

This is an article on a Russian news site linked to the Orthodox Church – which provides a view from Russia on this law. After all; it is their law, their culture, their society.

The Guardian article in question admits in the text that:

The Russian law bans giving children any information about homosexuality and is widely thought to have made life harder for gay Russians, who were already battling deep social prejudices

Even this is only half-true since it still persists in the claim that the law is specifically aimed at homosexuality. (The Guardian is of course doing its own propagandizing when it refers to “information”). This is characteristic of how the Guardian does propaganda. A misleading heading is corrected in the text – so they can’t be accused of lying. But, as they know full well, many people will just see the headline.

The Guardian article also contains unsourced claims about Chechnya.

The pre-occupation of some in the West with what happens in Russia is imperialist in tone. It is rather banal to simply believe that your values (values which have only become prevalent in the West in the last 20 years) are absolute and should be imposed everywhere.

Russia has a law which permits its courts to overrule judgements of international courts when those judgements contradict the principle of the supremacy of its own constitution. So; this European Court of Human Rights ruling may not go very far. (Except perhaps to make the Russians consider their membership of that treaty).

Author: justinwyllie

EFL Teacher and Photographer