Russian Nuclear Orthodoxy
Religion, Politics, and Strategy
Dmitry Adamsky

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Contents and Abstracts
1 Introduction
chapter abstract

This chapter introduces the main phenomenon under scrutiny, outlines research objectives, discusses literature lacunae, and introduces the main arguments, the findings, the structure, and the research method of the book.

2 State-Church Relations (1991–2000)
chapter abstract

This chapter deals with the state-church relations. It describes social, cultural, and ideational reasons for the entrance of religion into Russian politics in general and the inception of the church-military cooperation in particular. It describes how during this "genesis decade" the quest for religiosity emerged as a grassroots phenomenon within the nuclear complex and the latter entered into a covenant with the ROC.

3 Faith-Nuclear Nexus (1991–2000)
chapter abstract

This chapter explores the state of the faith-nuclear nexus during the discussed decade. It focuses on the ROC's relations with the nuclear industry, particularly in the closed city of Sarov—the capital of the nuclear weapons complex—and on the first bonds of the Moscow Patriarchate with the corps of the Russian nuclear triad. The chapter describes the introduction of religious ceremonies into the everyday functioning of the nuclear community, the designation of patron saints for nuclear institutions, and the construction of churches in the nuclear weapons industry and in the garrisons of the triad's corps.

4 Strategic Mythmaking (1991–2000)
chapter abstract

This chapter deals with the emergence of strategic mythology—the reading of divine interpretations into the Russian and Soviet military and nuclear history. It describes a search for a new national and professional identity, which marked the exodus of the Russian strategic community, and Russia as a whole, out of the Soviet era.

5 State-Church Relations (2000–2010)
chapter abstract

This chapter deals with the state-church relations during the "conversion decade." It describes how religion began playing an increasing role in Russian politics since the 2000s, and when the leadership began flirting with faith, and when a top-down trend supplemented the initial grassroots impulse. It discusses the ROC's influence on Russian foreign and domestic policy, the public and personal religious persona of President Putin, and the church-military relations and describes how the Kremlin restituted church property, introduced the institution of the military clergy, and enhanced the ROC's role in educational, social, and foreign policies.

6 Faith-Nuclear Nexus (2000–2010)
chapter abstract

This chapter explores the state of the faith-nuclear nexus during the discussed decade. It focuses on the gradual conversion of all the nuclear triad corps and the nuclear weapons industry and describes how the ROC became part and parcel of the nuclear officialdom and catechization and churching peaked in all the services of the nuclear triad by the end of the decade.

7 Strategic Mythmaking (2000–2010)
chapter abstract

This chapter deals with the evolution of the strategic mythology, up to its maturation to the widespread "Russian Nuclear Orthodoxy" concept, arguing that in order to preserve its Orthodox character, Russia needs to ensure its being a strong nuclear power, and to guarantee its nuclear status, it has to be genuinely Orthodox.

8 State-Church Relations (2010–2020)
chapter abstract

This chapter deals with the state-church relations. It describes how the bottom-up and top-down tendencies of the "genesis" and "conversion" decades have merged, reaching a peak of clericalization in state-church relations. It describes how religion has gained extraordinary prominence in national ideology and begun playing the most central role in Russian domestic and national security policy, and focuses on the church-military relations.

9 Faith-Nuclear Nexus (2010–2020)
chapter abstract

This chapter explores the faith-atoms nexus and demonstrates the pinnacle, thus far, of the ecclesiastical penetration into the nuclear industry and the nuclear triad. The chapter describes how the clergy became part and parcel of the military, primarily within the nuclear triad, where the priests have penetrated all levels of command, have been fostering patriotism and morale, and have resumed certain responsibilities within human reliability programs. The clergy have become integrated at the lowest tactical-operational levels across the corps.

10 Strategic Mythmaking (2010–2020)
chapter abstract

This chapter, dealing with strategic mythology, demonstrates how the latter has been informing the worldview and foreign policy choices of Russian decision makers. It also describes how Putin's religious-ideological-philosophical views have matured and informed geopolitical visions within the Russian strategic community.

11 Conclusion
chapter abstract

This chapter summarizes the main empirical and theoretical findings, speculates how the Kremlin's emphasis on religious ideology and nuclear weapons may manifest itself in prospective diplomatic and military initiatives, and provides several policy-relevant insights for practitioners seeking to engage Moscow on a host of geopolitical issues.

12 Epilogue
chapter abstract

This chapter situates the findings in a comparative context, to enable the formulation of a generic typology of faith and strategic affairs and to progress toward a parsimonious model of religious belief–driven modern militaries.