Russian anarchists back arrested anti-war soldier at British embassy

Russian anarchists illustrated a growing international awareness of the case of arrested anti-war soldier Joe Glention on January 15 by picketing in solidarity outside the British embassy in Moscow.

Submitted by Alien on January 17, 2010

Activists from the Autonomous Action, which is active in Russia, Belarus and Ukraine, were aiming to gather support for Joe Glenton under the banner "It's better to be deserter, than to be killer."

In a statement, they said: "Killers - those, who trespass on bounds of another country, bringing devastation and death, they should be called so. Terror - that's the name for actions of USA and their NATO co-belligerents in Afghanistan."

The group spent most of their time in the sights of police guns, however during the action there were no serious conflicts. Nobody was arrested.

Joe Glenton, who has been a soldier for five years and went on his first tour to Afghanistan in 2006, deserted and was arrested after making a public speech on an anti-war demonstration in October 24 in London. Prior to making his speech he had written to Prime Minister Gordon Brown, imploring him to stop the military action in Afghanistan and bring the troops home.

"I just couldn't see what we had given to the country. I felt ashamed" Glenton said.

The Stop the War Coalition has called Glenton's move a "very significant moment" in the campaign against the Afghanistan conflict. He is the first serving soldier to speak out against the government's policy.