Vorobiev, Mikhail Petrovich (1901-1996) aka Michel Vorobieff

Mikhail Vorobiev

A short biography of Mikhail Vorobiev, Russian anarchist also active in France and Spain.

Author
Submitted by Battlescarred on November 10, 2023

Mikhail Vorobiev was born on 30th October 1901 in Astrakhan in southern Russia. He became a student at the Academy of Mines in Moscow and in 1921 was active in the group of United Anarchist Students in that city, alongside comrades like Ivan Yudin and Petr Mikhailov. Of this group. He was arrested on 18th March of that year during a meeting of this group.

In September 1921 he and a dozen other interned anarchists went on hunger strike. Thanks to the interventions of foreign delegations at the Congress of The Red Trade Union International (the Profintern) he was freed but banished from the USSR along with Volin, Efim Yarchuk, Yudin, Alexander Schapiro, Grigorii Gorelik, Grigorii Maximov, Mark Mratchny, and Abram Feldman at the end of the year.

Vorobiev managed to get on a Soviet cargo ship along with Mikhailov and arrived clandestinely at Hamburg in January 1922. He was subsequently arrested by the German authorities and eventually arrived in France where he joined the anarchist organisation Union Anarchiste (UA). After 1936 he became a member of the Fédération Anarchiste de Langue Française.

With the coming of the Spanish Revolution Vorobiev made his way to Barcelona and joined the Borovoi group of the FAI. The Russian branch of the CNT Abroad was set up which published The Bulletin of the CNT in the Russian language, edited by Vorobiev and Nikita Romash, which maintained contact with Russian anarchist exiles. Vorobiev worked as a translator at the Office of External Propaganda of the CNT-FAI. Among those Vorobiev worked with was Leo Volin, the son of the famous anarchist Volin.

On May 31, 1937, the French-speaking group of the FAI was formally established, for which Vorobiev and Fernand Fortin, his comrade from the Office, proposed the name Mimosa, the nickname of the French anarchist Georgette Ango (Kokozcinski), Fortin's former companion, murdered with three other anarchist nurses in the battle of La Perdiguera on October 16, 1936. The proposal was opposed by groups of Spanish and Italian anarchists. The FAI Mimosa group had, for this reason, very few members, half a dozen in July 1937. It was established in the Gracia district of Barcelona and had a very modest activity. In December 1938, due to the departure of most of its members from Spain, Fortin and Vorobiev were the last two members of the group.

In 1939 Vorobiev, fleeing over the border with the defeat of the Republic and the Retirada, was imprisoned the concentration camp at Gurs by the French authorities. There, together with Egon Illfeld, Karl Brauner, Paul Czakon, Helmut Klose, and Georg Gernsheimer, he was a member of the 9th Company Committee, in opposition to the Stalinist leadership of the camp prisoners.

During the Nazi occupation of France Vorobiev worked with the Resistance.

After the war, Vorobiev became a member of the Fédération Anarchiste (FA) in the Louise Michel group of the 18th arrondissement of Paris. He lived in the district at 5 Rue Briquet. He took part in the group’s meetings at Rue Robert Planquette, speaking little, and happy to sweep and clean up after the meetings. One of the group’s members, Maurice Joyeux counselled against him street selling the FA’s weekly paper, Le Monde Libertaire, to avoid possible arrest.

He died at Lagny on the 2nd March 1996.

Two photographs of Mikhail Vorobiev by Kai Horna, the Hungarian photojournalist:

Comments

Battlescarred

3 months 1 week ago

Submitted by Battlescarred on November 27, 2023

I have 2 more photos of Vorobiev by Kati Horna, the Hungarian photojournalist. How can I add them to the libcom website?

adri

3 months ago

Submitted by adri on November 29, 2023

I believe you can do "edit" -> under "files" add whatever images -> right-click the file/image that you just uploaded and copy the link -> in the body of the text paste the link and then use the image tag. That way the images are hosted on here rather than somewhere else. Just make sure to unclick the "display" option on all the image files.

Battlescarred

3 months ago

Submitted by Battlescarred on December 1, 2023

No, can't figure it out.

Submitted by Fozzie on December 2, 2023

Battlescarred wrote: No, can't figure it out.

Basics:

1. click "edit" at the top of this page
2. click "choose files" on the right hand side
3. upload the photos
4. reply to this thread and tell us you've done that
5. we'll do the rest

Battlescarred

3 months ago

Submitted by Battlescarred on December 2, 2023

Have uploaded photos, taken by Kai Horna, the Hungarian photojournalist

Fozzie

3 months ago

Submitted by Fozzie on December 2, 2023

OK great - I have added these to the foot of the article, thanks for uploading them!