Diplomats Tear Apart Russian Newspaper’s Gay Conspiracy Theory
Russian rag used a fake diplomatic document to accuse U.S. officials of funding activists
The Russian government doesn’t like gay people. In 2013, the Kremlin passed a law against what it calls “gay propaganda” — which effectively outlawed pro-gay speech. Russian media outlets have also been waging a propaganda war of their own against gay rights activists.
Fortunately, they’re not very good at it.
Lawyer and activist Nikolai Alexeyev is a particularly vocal opponent of Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin’s anti-gay stance. Russian authorities have frequently detained and beaten him for his repeated attempts to organize unauthorized gay pride events.
On Nov. 18, Russian newspaper Izvestia published an article that purports to prove that Washington has been funding activists such as Alexeyev to disrupt Russian society and to “discredit” Russian officials by accusing them of being gay. In May 2013, Alexeyev told radio station Ekho Moskvy that Vladimir Putin’s aide Vyacheslav Volodin and other top government officials were gay.
The article’s smoking gun is a “hacked” letter from the U.S. State Department addressed to Alexeyev. Though the Russian paper provided no direct link, the document originally appeared on the anarchist website CyberGuerrilla.
The big problem with the letter is that it’s obviously fake.
The writer struggles with the word “the,” which Russian speakers new to English often have difficulty with — among other telltale style and grammar errors. Staff at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow tracked down the document and corrected these errors in red pen, and proceeded to blast it out on social media.
We’ll let the document speak for itself.
The Americans left a little note at the end in Russian with the Embassy’s posts on Twitter and Facebook. Here’s the translation.
Next time you use a fake letter, please send us a copy – we would be happy to help correct the mistakes.
The U.S. State Department