What is happening in Ukraine? Interview with international secretary of KRAS-IWA

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Apr 3 2015 08:03
What is happening in Ukraine? Interview with international secretary of KRAS-IWA

This in the English variant of an interview made by Chinese anarchist blog "emblack.wordpress.com" with internarional secretary of KRAS-IWA, anarcho-syndicalist union in Russia

Question: How would you explain what is happening there in Ukraine? What did happen in Ukraine to bring it to such war situation now?

Answer: The Ukrainian crisis is a multi-level phenomenon. It developed against a background of bad social and economic situation of working people arose from continuous neoliberal reforms after the end of "Soviet Union". This situation led to deep discontent in the society. But it is not this social discontent which produced the so-called Euromaidan protest in 2013, but the political games in the ruling elites of Ukrainian "oligarchic democracy". The protest actions for integration in the EU were started by a little bunch of youths from the "middle class", and they obtained a organizational, financial, political, medial etc. support from the oppositional tycoons and parties which wanted to depose their competitor, the little group around President Yanukovich. It was from the beginning not a social protest but a clear political multi-class movement with no less reactionary characteristics than the Yanukovich regime. During the long and violent confrontation on the streets between the opposition and police forces, the protesters begun to arm themselves, and the openly ultranationalist and neofascist forces and groups conquerred a hegemony on the street and in the discourse. After the violent overthrow of Yanukovitch in Kiew, a counter-movement arose in the East of Ukraine, at first, with the federalist demands, and then under the banner of Russian nationalism and separatism as a counter-play to Ukrainian nationalism of Maidan. This movement is also under the leadership of bourgeoisie, and the pro-Russian ultra-rightists and neofascists playing a very significant part here. The separatist regimes in Donbass are no less reactionary then in Kiew. And there is a civil war between them.

The intervention of foreign powers is another decisive factor in the crisis. The USA, the states of EU, the NATO and the Russian state have manifold interests in Ukraine: economical, political, strategic and military. The worldwide struggle for a new repartition of World between the capitalist powers continues, and they wage a "substitute" war on the soil of Ukraine. Western powers supported from the beginning the Euromaidan and then the new, the NATO-oriented regime in Kiev, giving to new rulers money, consultants, weapons and dictating the politic designed by IMF. On the other hand, the Kremlin used the situation of quasi "failed state" in Ukraine to annex the Crimea and to help to Eastern separatists, directly and indirectly. In such a way, the foreign powers struggling each other using their puppets in Ukraine.

Question: Ukraine actually has a long anarchist tradition, people were telling me that everybody in Ukraine known or heard something about anarchism, did any anarchist really root in the society today, if not why, if yes how?

Answer: This tradition existed of course, but it was interrupted by Bolshevist and Stalinist repressions as in other parts of "Soviet Union". It`s true that almost everybody in Ukraine heard about Nestor Makhno, but people consider him as a "popular hero" rather as an anarchist. This lead to very strange phenomena. Both Ukrainian nationalists and people from East of Ukraine take now Makhno as their "own", without having any real understanding or knowledge about Anarchism and about it aims.

So we can`t say that the anarchism has more roots in the Ukrainian society than anywhere. The society in Ukraine is atomized as in the other countries of ex-"Soviet Union", and the workers haven`t a class or libertarian consciousness.

Question: Well about the anarchist history in Ukraine, was it only Nestor's army or was there other existing anarchist faction, what were they like, if they are now existed in any other different way?

Answer: Properly speaking, the Makhnovist army was not anarchist; it was rather a formation of local / regional self-defense, consisted mainly of peasants. Among the political active people, there were not only anarchists therein, but also members of "Party of Left Social Revolutionaries", non-party people or sometimes also rank-and-file Bolshevists. And this army didn`t have any "anarchist program": it declared only that it aimed to liberate the population of the dictate from outside and to give to it a possibility to organize the life how people wanted. There were only few socialized industries or agrarian communes; the traditional structures of peasants self-administration dominated in the countryside. But it`s true that the anarchists played a key role both in the army and in the constructive work in the liberated areas. The principal anarchist organization was the "Confederation of Ukraine`s Anarchists "Tocsin"". It was surely a most attractive anarchist association which participated in the Russian Revolution 1917–1921. It militants (Voline, Aron Baron etc.) had most developed and radical revolutionary ideas, combining anarchist communism as the goal, syndicalism as the means and anarchist individualism as a philosophy, and they proposed to all anarchists to unite themselves on this ground. The militants of "Tocsin" organized worker unions / syndicates, initiated the building of free Councils and their Congresses, made a school, cultural and propaganda work, and they struggled also in the army of Makhno. This organization was destructed by the Bolshevik State simultaneously with the suppression of Makhnovist movement; some militants were arrested and later executed, the other get in foreign exile. But there were several attempts to rebuild the "Tocsin" in the underground, up to the beginning of 1930s. The repressions of the State were terrible.

Unfortunately, this tradition was interrupted. The new libertarian movement in the Ukraine emerged in the time of Soviet "Perestroika", in the beginning as a part of an Union-wide movement. Like the most libertarian groups in Russia, it was rather "moderate", sometime supporting the ideas of a "market socialism without state" or some other strange things. In the 1990s, two principal centers of movement appeared. The first, the so-called "RKAS Makhno" had it strongholds in the East, in Donbass. Despite some allusion to anarcho-syndicalism, this organization was more or less "platformist", i.e. it advocated a building of a centralist "anarchist" party for leading unions or other social movements. There were also some moments of a quasi-religious sects in it: there was a real leader who was in the same time a teacher of martial art Wing Chun, and the trainings get hand in hand with the mental influence and "anarchist" postulates. In the 2000s, the leaders of the group tried to build a new "platformist" International, with the groups or people from Ukraine, Russia, Georgia, Bulgaria, Germany, Israel etc., but this project failed after a short time. After the beginning of actual civil war in the Ukraine, the RKAS ceased it activities: some militants supported the Ukrainian state, some others get to separatist army units, and the leaders declared the organization "frozen".

The other center of movement was in Kiev. It was from the beginning more "new leftist" or sub-cultural, partly with intellectual semi-marxist interests. In the 1990s and 2000s, they animated a semi-syndicalist student union "Direct action", together with the Trotskyists and some other Marxists. The group didn`t have any clear conception of anarchism, mixing together some platformist, syndicalist and neomarxist elements. Then they proclaimed creation of an "adult" organization, "Autonomous Workers Union" (AWU), which contacted the Swedish SAC and other reformist syndicalists abroad. After the beginning of the actual crisis, the more important figures in the AWU supported the Maidan, declaring it a "bourgeois revolution". They defend the Ukrainian "national liberation" and the actual regime in Kiev against Russia, rejecting the internationalist position against all states, governments and nations and welcoming the NATO. Some members of the AWU consider such position "too nationalist". They consider themselves "internationalist" and created a group "Black Rainbow", but they miss until now to reject Maidan and to break definitely with the nationalist leadership of AWU.

Question: Ukraine in recently years have a lot of political active group appears. When we say political, it says it is almost a pan-political trend of people thinking if they act under the name of the "nation" or a certain big name such as "feminist" or such they are rather promoting a democratic or post colonized (reflects to the culture imperialist they have faced in such politcal-economical weakness in Europa) under its acutal political/economic situation. What do you think, what are the real interests of the people in this? Are they facing a very difficult time that they are using a lot name to confused people what are the real problem? And what is the reason it brought such an revolt with the people?

Answer: It`s a very important point. This problem exists not only in Ukraine, it is worldwide. In the last years, we see a lot of movements in different countries (from Egyptian Tahrir to "movement for free elections" in Russia or "umbrella protest" in Hong Kong), where there are no social and economical demands but only striving for removal of some politicians and for replacing them with others. Moreover, because the demands for any real different social politic are absent, these new rulers obtain in the fact a "carte blanche" for the continuation of the same (or for the carrying out of even worse) politics against working people. These movements are usually multi-classist and occur under the hegemony of bourgeoisie and oppositional politicians. The active political or non-governmental groups mentioned by you consist partly exactly of such people with "middle-class mentality" who think that the existing authorities, corruptions etc. hinder them to go upstairs. Sometime they name themselves a "creative class". But it`s true that sometime there are also working people who participate in these movement. The grounds are various: the democratic illusions, the lack of class and libertarian consciousness, the personalization of politics (with an identification of system problems with concrete politicians), the absence of any alternative idea about how the society can be reorganized etc.

Unfortunately, some libertarian groups and militants incline to participate in these "pure political" movements "for the democracy". Some share in the reality a Marxist concept of "stages in the revolution": first the bourgeois democracy and only then a social revolution. Some other are simply too "movementist": for them, the principal thing is to do something, and what concretely - it`s secondary. We say in jest about activist "adrenaline-dependence" in such cases. And some activists are afraid "to cut adrift from The People": as though "the People" has always right... Some try to find the elements of "self-organization" even in reactionary and nationalist mass movements, forgetting that even the fascism can be "self-organized" and that exactly a coincidence of form and content is important...

In our opinion, this is a very dangerous trend. We can and must participate only in the broader movements which promote an independence of working people from ruling classes and politicians, which help to destroy illusions and not to strengthen them. So pure "political-democratic" movements, without any real social demands and under the leadership of politicians, aren`t interesting for us as Anarchists. A normal decisive strike challenging a capitalist or any real social conflict in the neighborhood is a thousand times more important for the possible awareness-building of working people.

Question: How would you explain why it bring such a war situation, politically and what it means to ordinary people?

Answe: Both sides of the war don`t want to make any serious concessions, because they don`t want limit their power hunger. Both desire to have all. And the puppeteers from Brussels, Washington, Berlin, Moscow etc. incite them to this stubbornness. In the same time, the working people in Ukraine are too desorganized and have to less consciousness to stop this war really through mass actions or strikes. It`s true that there is a massive local resistance against mobilization and conscription (at least, in the regions under the control of Kiev; unfortunately, we don`t have a such information from Donbass). But it was not enough for stop the war.

The toils of war and the suffering hit the population, ordinary people. This are not only immediate consequences of the war: several thousands of killed, more than 1 million refugees, destroyed houses, schools, hospitals, infrastructure... Also a humanitarian catastrophe (lack of foods and medicaments in the war zone), and a social one (much workers and retirees don`t have their money since months)... The economic suffers from the war, and this makes the hardest economic crisis deeper and only heightens the dependence from IWF, EU and USA, in one side, and from Russia, in the other. And also mental and ideological impact of bestial nationalism will poison the conscience for several coming years if not decades...

Question: Those anarchist outside who went to join the ANTIFASCIST army seems they have simplified what is happening in Ukraine, and it seems that they are also reflecting their failure in their own local that they search a war to fight against the visiualized enemy, rather the rooted enemy - state- capitalist in their own country. Would you give some example about what the Russian people think, and how this refelcts their own life struggle?

Answer: I agree with your appraisal: this is unfortunately a very serious problem for activists of solidarity movement in the whole world and especially in the so-called "First World", where many generations of leftists were educated politically in the sense of a "collective guilt" complex against the "Third World Peoples" as whole. So they see in the other parts of the World often only what they want to see. A good example is f.ex. the appreciation of PKK regime in Syrian Kurdistan as a "libertarian revolution".

For some libertarian people in Europe and America the "antifascism" is a magical word which can justify everything. Also a very active role of ultra-rightists under the so-called "antifascist" spectrum. Thereby they don`t want to see the presence of many Russian and pro-Russian neofascists in the armed forces of Donbass, speaking only about the neofascists on the Ukrainian side. Or they consider it not important at all because they think, the NATO / US imperialism is the "greater evil" etc. This reflects also the leftist ideas about "national liberation".

And you have right: for some people it is also a kind of compensation for the inability to fight "at home", against local state and capital!

As to reaction of ordinary people in Russian... I must recognize that not few people were carried by nationalist, patriotic sentiments and supported the annexion of Crimea etc. The nationalist hysteria organized by the state aimed also to distract the attention from the economic crisis in Russia. But little by little, in process of deepening of crisis, the number of people ready to suffer the real worsening of their situation for the sake of Crimea etc. decreased perceptibly. The population is discontent with low wages, high prices and other social problems (in health, education etc.). But it remains passive in majority: the level of social atomization is too big.

Question: Lets called off the international support of the anarchist of the world in this war? Are they fighting this "for the ordinary people of Ukranie"? What is your personal idea toward Ukraine issue, what do you think what is the real thing that we can do in this ????

Answer: I think, the anarchist must don`t support any of belligerent sides in this war and any of imperialist state power or bloc. Of course, anti-war protests are important and necessary, but they must be equidistant, against all sides and states. And of course do not participate in such joint actions with ultrarightist only because they are against USA (as it occurs for example in Germany). It would be very good to support the deserters and conscription evaders and also strike movements and social protests in both sides of Ukraine. And if people want to send a humanitarian aid, it is strictly necessary to don`t give it to organizations close to any of belligerent sides: there is no guarantee that this aid will reach ordinary people. A such sending makes sense only through real independent organizations, with the possibility to prove the just repartition at place.

Source: https://emblack.wordpress.com/2015/03/26/%E7%83%8F%E5%85%8B%E8%98%AD%E6%83%85%E6%B3%81%E7%B3%BB%E5%88%97%E4%B8%80-%EF%BC%88%E6%8C%81%E7%BA%8C%E6%9B%B4%E6%96%B0%EF%BC%89/; https://emblack.wordpress.com/2015/03/31/%E7%83%8F%E5%85%8B%E8%98%AD%E6%83%85%E6%B3%81%E7%B3%BB%E5%88%97%E4%B8%80-ii/

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Iskra
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Apr 3 2015 08:18

Great read!

baboon
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Apr 3 2015 11:46

Good points made above by KRAS. Here's another internationalist position: http://en.internationalism.org/icconline/201503/12358/ukraine-imperialist-war-both-sides

akai
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Apr 3 2015 12:11

One thing I believe is a consequence of the conflict is a growing number of pro-Russian movements in Europe which are inspired by the state-patriotic-nationalist claims of anti-fascism and which see gain politically as presenting themselves as an "anti-West" position. In Poland they say "anti-Atlantists" to highlight their opposition to NATO. Here this led to the creation of a Russian-funded party which combines leftists (usually authoritarian communists and anti-capitalisits) and fascists, such as Eurasianists and the Falanga. These positions also have support amongst others, such as pseudo-syndicalists.

Although the tradition of combining the left and right in Poland is rather old and this isn't the first time anarchists and leftists got in bed with nationalists and fascists, the war in Ukraine renewed this process and it looks quite bad now.

As I understand, it also had extraordinarily bad consequences in Ukraine and Russia, with all sorts of self-proclaimed anarchists, antifascists and leftists taking up troubling positions.

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Apr 3 2015 12:49

Can this be posted in the library? Makes it easier to share. Tanks!

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Apr 3 2015 13:05

This is a problem not only in Poland, helas. For ex., the so-called "Montagsdemonstrations" in Germany were (are) a such left-right "Querfront" under the banner of Antiamericanism / Antiatlantism

akai
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Apr 4 2015 10:47

I don't say this is a problem only in Poland. Besides the problem of the Querfront, there is a really big problem of so-called "anti-fascists", particularly from Spain, Italy and Greece, which are involved in very shady actions in Ukraine. These no doubt are useful idiots of authoritarian communists, most notably groups like Borotba but also others, which using Soviet-style national-based antifascism have got communists in these countries doing stupid things, anarchists as well.

Today I also saw that the IWW ISC spreads this type of disinformation also.

So communists have Querfront under the name of fake antifascism and also fake socialism - nationalism socialism.

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Apr 4 2015 11:41

In library; http://libcom.org/library/what-happening-ukraine-interview-international-secretary-kras-iwa

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Apr 8 2015 15:04

https://www.facebook.com/anarchocommie/posts/818661544891260

Quote:
These pictures prove again that AWU from Ukraine’s role has nothing to do with promoting anarchism, and that indeed their main concerns during the maidan and after were directed at discrediting the resistance in the east of Ukraine against the fascist government of Ukraine, while trying to gain support from the anarchists and in the west for the Nazi boots which have been put in power by Western machinations.
Here they are seen displaying the anarcho-syndicalist flag next to one of McCain’s stooges in Ukraine; perhaps we are to believe that McCain is now an anarcho-syndicalist too? Why are they trying to compromise anti-capitalist struggle like this?
They associate themselves publicly with Alexei Geraschenko, one of the organizers of the Odessa massacre on May 2, 2014, when Nazis trapped, clubbed to death, butchered and burned alive anti-government protestors, setting the site of the massacre, the trade union building in Kulikovo square, on fire to cover up the traces of the bloodshed.

AWU constantly downplayed and whitewashed the Nazi presence and influence during and after the maidan. They covered up for the fact that the civil war was the demanded by the Nazis in Ukraine with the aim of “wiping out” the “sub-humans” in east of Ukraine, as their Nazi prime-minister (IMF’s man) called the local population.
AWU supported the civil war against eastern Ukraine, promoting it in the language of their government – as “anti-terrorist” operation; some of their members even joined the Nazi battalion Azov. They subscribed to the government propaganda against the people in the east of Ukraine as they were bombed and slaughtered with impunity. They do not stand for anarchist ideas, but for nationalist ones, and certainly they are not anti-capitalists, but rather parasite leftist language and concepts to make themselves look credible to the western audiences.
They lied that Stepan Bandera was just “a nationalist”, when in fact he was a Nazi, and a supporter of the greater Ukrainian Aryan empire, the cause promoted by the Nazi battalions in the war against eastern Ukraine. They promoted all the Cold War lies about the Nazis in Ukraine, mainly that during WWII they fought against “the Nazis” when in fact they were their most enthusiastic collaborators.
In Ukraine, the Nazis who committed the February 2014 coup have finally colonized all institutions of force in Ukraine – at first the secret service SBU, then the police and now they have been incorporated in the army (US trains these Nazis in the army and police).
Their Gestapo, SBU (secret service) is to be organized on the model of the Nazi collaborators OUN/UPA, whose plans aimed at transforming Uraine into a third reich state during the world war II (but US government and Nazi-apologist historians erased this fact from their history and lied instead they fought against “Nazis”.)
http://ukraineantifascistsolidarity.wordpress.com/…/ukraini…

While Ukraine bullies the entire world that they will blacklist state leaders who accept to participate at the ceremonied in Moscow celebrating the defeat of Hitler’s armies during World War II, the Ukrainian Gestapo (SBU) seized even servers of wordpress.com (nic.ua) for registering domains and hosting of "separatist" sites.
The Gestapo sized them after courts supported their demands to have these blogs shut down: nahnews.com.ua; slv.org.ua; rubezhnoe.org.ua. This is the “democracy” the western governments support in Ukraine; imagine what censorship they inflict on information transmitted by mass media.

This is another proof that the maidan was indeed a counter-revolutionary, ultra-reactionary, armed and military-style operation orchestrated by the United States and which resulted in a coup which brought Nazis in power positions in Ukraine.
They have been incorporated in the police after even western so-called “human rights” organizations (Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch) had to admit their war crimes against the population in eastern Ukraine.
In eastern Ukraine they kidnapped people from the streets and tortured them for fun – these atrocities have been confirmed by Amnesty and HRW; but not the rapes too.

The Nazi UNA-UNSO leader Dmytro Yarosh, also a war criminal, is part of the government now – he occupies a position of councilor for the defense minister. Against this AWU does not protest. Nor they protest against the fact that Nazis have taken over public schools indoctrinating children into Nazism. They don’t protest the fascist laws of the Ukrainians state, the political assassinations of their opposition and of the media. They do not protest the calls for genocide which come from Ukrainian journalists or Ukrainain fascist politicians.

Here AWU are seen, abusively using the anarcho-syndicalist flag, holding a rally for the release of Aleksandr Kolchenko, who is presented in western anarchist circles as a left-wing activist, and who was arrested in Crimea for plotting terrorist attacks to protest Crimea breaking away from Ukraine and being annexed by Russia. Kolchenko is accused of being part of Right Sector (UNA-UNSO’s stage name). He denies this. He claims he’s not nationalist, but considers himself “a citizen of Ukraine”; Russian authorities say he is a citizen of Russia. He considers that post-maidan controlled Ukraine is “free”, strangely he does not see the Nazis boots who terrorize the population of “the free” Ukraine.
http://avtonom.org/…/support-crimean-anarchist-aleksandr-ko…

During the maidan in Kyiv he was present weekly in Moscow at protests supporting the maidan in Kyiv.
http://www.jamestown.org/single/…

One of his friends, Maxim Osadchuk, a self-proclaimed “Marxist” but who is part of nationalist group 'Avtonomny Opir', joined Aidar battalion, which terrorized and slaughtered the local population of eastern Ukraine (AIDAR were some of the most sadistic torturers and terrorists unleashed by the state of Ukraine against the civilian population in east Ukraine.) Here Opir marching with nazis in 2009: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOC_9z0YRYs

As for Crimea, here’s one Nazi from Azov who says: "Ukraine will be Ukrainian or it will be deserted!" His dream is to return Crimea to Ukraine, but without its inhabitants because he considers them “traitors”.
https://www.facebook.com/azov.batalion/photos/pb.879147128782077.-2207520000.1428414022./1032449423451846/?type=3&theater

In an interview for “Radio Free Europe”, after Crimea was transferred under Kyiv’s administration as an autonomous region, Stepan Bandera stated clearly that the inhabitants of Crimea – mostly Russian ethnics – will always be considered “occupants”, and enemies of the state of Ukraine. The program of the “national revolution” of Ukraine which is enforced, step by step, by the post-fascist coup ruling power of Ukraine states clearly that one of the first measures of their “natiocracy” (the dictatorship of the nation) was to cancel the autonomous status of Crimea and force the Ukrainianization of the Russian population there.

As for those presented as “leftists” by liberal media in the West, here are some proof that they serve exclusively the western war propaganda machine.
The person who signs this article published by Salon claims he’s a “Marxist” and a leftist activist, when in fact he is a fraud and has been exposed as such when he tried to parasite western leftists organizations before.
http://www.salon.com/…/we_should_recognize_that_there_are…/…

It’s ridiculous, liberals can’t even google?
https://komepd.wordpress.com/…/maidan-and-a-ukranian-stor…/…

http://www.yenicag.com.cy/…/ukraynanin-protesto-hareketi-…/…
Of course, such a “Marxist” he is that he supported the fascist coup in Ukraine:
http://www.criticatac.ro/…/left-sector-euromaidan-possible/…

akai
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Apr 9 2015 04:57

For all the problems I have with Maidan and some of the positions some AWU members have, this Ukraine antifascist solidarity is shit beyond shit of lying Stalinoids who apologize for red-brown alliances and are nothing more than reactionary statists who grossly associate fighting "against the West" with fighting against capitalism, again exposing the fatal flaws of the false dictomy created by the great powers and being manipulated by pro-Russian forces. In other words, some of what some AWU people were doing was indeed dumb and even inexcusable, but the politics of people you are quoting are even worse.

anarchistsolidarity
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Apr 9 2015 08:22

What AKAI said. Couldn't put it any better myself.

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Apr 9 2015 23:54
akai wrote:
Are there any decent links to sober critiques/exposés of Borotba that I could circulate locally via FB to counter this?

edit: also anything specifically to do with links to Russian neo-nazis or antisemites, as this is being sold on the "anti-fascist resistance to rising Right Sector nazi tide" line.

(fuck you subprole, you ain't big enough...)

No.Seriously. I know people are sometimes a bit intimidated from answering to my questions in case there's a diatribe at the end of it, but it's an honest question. The interviewer from Look Left, who had interview Dimytry Kovolevich is a good friend of mine who, no matter how much I disagree with his recent political fall from anarchism into Kautskyist-Stalinist deviations, is a sincere Jewish lefty and deserves a bit more from me than me just rolling my eyes in horror at the mention of Borotba. I could do with some comradely help here.

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Apr 9 2015 13:38
Quote:
but the politics of people you are quoting are even worse.

akai, as long as you cannot provide any evidence that these mentioned facts and the picture showing AWU demonstrating together with fascists are manipulated I do not care about the politics of the source.

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Apr 9 2015 23:53

subprole. would you ever stop re-editing your comment, that must be the 6th time by now. what's wrong with you. do you want to talk?

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Apr 10 2015 03:13

Ocelot. Since I would be losing my time answering you I am not interested in any form of discussion with you or someone else of this fucking idiots who are supporting AWU. Besides: I did not make more than one or max. two orthografic corrections. So stop bullshitting, got it?.

It is confirmed now (ironically from pro-AWU source) that this politician spoke at this AWU gathering without any doubt.

akai
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Apr 10 2015 09:08

Subprole, I do not claim that this photo was not manipulated. I do not know about it and it well can be true and I wouldn't be surprised. I am certainly not in favour of this kind of shit, never have been and have always denounced this kind of thing when I have seen it in the last 20 years. This is a lot more than some others, who regularly brush this interaction with fascists under the carpet. In Poland there are people pretending to be libertarians from a syndicalist organization (WI) who even run in election with fascists and their buddies cover up for them. So all these organizations need to be held accountable for this asshole stuff. (And when I say all, we should add the supporting or fundng organizations like SAC.) That said, I consider it really bad to quote Borotba in this situation because they are just as bad or even worse PLUS they are authoritarian leftists who are misleading left people all over the world to support THEIR struggle which includes fascists, nationalists, Stalinists, etc. and grotesquely labelling it anti-fascism.

I think it is very bad to look at things as a choice between two diseases, as we say, as choice between the plague or cholera. So I support the ideas being forwarded by KRAS, which refuses to be dragged into the shit of one side or another but is on the side of the working class against capitalism, the state, etc.

But I said something here because I think what Borotba has been doing is extremely dangerous, that is using and manipulating anti-fascism in the service of authoritarian statism and all the time being involved with Russian nationalists. Right now, anybody who is really against the spreading of totalitarian ideologies and nationalism should be focusing on what is happening with parts of the European left who have actually moved over to these positions. It is only getting worse due to the false recognition of the Russian state as some "opposition" to "western capital".

I don't agree with this analysis 100% in the details, but it is in English and has links to other English language articles, http://www.workersliberty.org/node/24525 There's other stuff if you search. I rely mostly on Russian-language stuff, but have no time to translate it. Sorry.

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Apr 10 2015 12:56
Quote:
I do not claim that this photo was not manipulated.

Of course it is not, what are you talking about?

Quote:
That said, I consider it really bad to quote Borotba

I. I did not quote Borotba, I quoted a text from this 'anarchocommunism' page on fb (which included some links to groups etc I do not necessarily agree with)
II. As long as the basic facts (especially those marked bold) are correct it does not matter at all who is quoted.
III. Since I did not have another source I had to use this one. If you then consider the presentation of facts "really bad" you (and more openly others) obviously want to divert from AWU collaboration with this fucking Ukrainian nationalist politician.

Quote:
I don't agree with this analysis 100% in the details, but it is in English and has links to other English language articles, http://www.workersliberty.org/node/24525

They are Trotskyist and as shit as Borotba and probably only scum of AWU - who are objectively pro-fascist - that collaborate with politicians who take pictures together with John McCain and have been involved in the massacre in Odessa are worse.

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Juan Conatz
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Apr 10 2015 14:35

Is there anything but an anonymous Facebook page that gives evidence the following?

1. Is that person with a flag in AWU?
2. Was this a rally organized by AWU?
3. Some background info and evidence of the speaker being who they say he is and if he really is in Right Sector and/or participated in a massacre?

akai
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Apr 10 2015 14:37

No I don't consider the presentation of facts bad, I consider using the accusations about fascist collaboration by fascist collaborators to be bad Not trying to cover anything bit am just critical of trends towards being useful idiots. If that's not you, fine.

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Apr 10 2015 18:31
Quote:
1. Is that person with a flag in AWU?

Yes, he and other people in the background of this fucking bastard. Evidence? On one of the posters the logo of AWU can be seen:




The person directly behind the politician is a member of AWU. Here are more pictures from the gathering in Kiev (April 6th):


Quote:
2. Was this a rally organized by AWU?

They organised this gathering together with other leftist and liberal groups. Even if they would have "just" participated it would make them objectively collaborators of the state and Ukrainian Nazi-terrorists.

Quote:
3. Some background info and evidence of the speaker being who they say he is and if he really is in Right Sector and/or participated in a massacre?

He is probably not a member of Right Sector (this has also absolutely nowhere been stated), but definitely of the political organisation that is currently in government (Poroshenko). Here he can be seen in Odessa during the massacre as a "passive" observer:

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Apr 10 2015 16:38
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Media: nationalist leader to be appointed adviser to Ukraine's army commander-in-chief

http://tass.ru/en/world/787331

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subprole
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Apr 10 2015 18:26

Amazing to see this very, very confused pro-imperialist left liberals from AWU posing for the media scum of "Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty" (owned by the United States government, obviously without any relations to Borotba etc.) in front of the Russian embassy - this politician can also be seen there:

http://www.radiosvoboda.org/media/photogallery/26941110.html
http://www.radiosvoboda.org/content/news/26941039.html

America, fuck yeah!

anarchistsolidarity
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Apr 10 2015 19:05

subprole, you forgot to add "FACT" with all the stuff you have written. You should remember it always makes it look more important. But then again, facts don't seem to be too important, as they are getting in a way of a good story wink

akai
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Apr 10 2015 23:00

OK all, I did a bit of investigating. I now think Subprole has been using very shady sources of information .... in other words, taking the words of idiots. This does not mean I am not gonna criticize AWU here. I've read some articles about the action, seen TV coverage, looked through various web pages and social media in Ukraine and can say a few things now. And answer Juan's questions.

Yes, the politician Aleksei Goncharenko was at this demonstration. The people denouncing him botched his name, which probably means they are not locals and not 100% aware of what they are talking about. Goncharenko is collecting money for Kolchenko.

As I see, the protest was organized by a liberal human rights person. I don't know anything about her personally, but judging my her FB etc., it is a classic human rights activist. There is nothing to link her to fascists....... unless you call all liberals that are pro-EU type human rights activists fascists. Because I guess the wing-nuts who support Russian nationalists do that.

It's clear that Goncharenko was there because many people in Ukraine are interested in the Kolchenko case and see him as framed by authorities. The idiots brainwashed by Russian nationalists try to support the accusations of the Russian state and imply that Kolchenko was a terrorist or something but I don't see anything to support that. Of course the useful idiots of the Russian state would argue that anybody who had a different position n the Ukraine conflict is a fascist, but that argument is just assinine.

It is also clear that members of the action were typical for those types of actions where you have liberals, politicians and anarchists together and it looks like shit. Somebody at the action was talking about how they were meeting with the Minister of Foreign affairs, how they are getting the government interested in the stuff, etc. etc. There was no indication this person was an anarchist. There were anarchists there though. Well, let's just say that there are anarchists all over the place that go to actions organized by liberals and stand silently by while politicians, often very scummy ones, take stage. I don't agree with this type of shit and don't think it is cool. So yes, I think it is legitimate to criticize this shit, but the circumstances are a bit different when people are organizing in this "open" way, together with liberals and so on. Because, let's face it, lots of anarchists act like left liberals in this respect, trying to get up the asses of politicians who promise to help one of their causes. I really don't like it .... but just clarifying what it looked like.

Then there is the question of the accusations about the Odessa fire and of Goncharenko being a fascist. Well, I have no intention of defending any politician.... but after reading through some things, what Goncharenko actually seems to be guilty of is being against Russian separatism in Ukraine and not being sorry about the Odessa fire. There is no evidence he organized that action - he was there, he was doing some broadcast from outside and he was not on the side of the separatists. A little while ago he went to Nemtsov's funeral in Moscow and was detained by Russian special services in relation to Odessa, but they let him go without pressing any charges and saying that they had no accusations to make against him. It seems unlikely he would get off so easily if he had actually organized events in Odessa. The ones who seem to be accusing him are nationalist wing nuts. Of course one could argue that being against the separatists in Odessa makes one a nazi, but I personally think that is a really grotesque simplification which is the type of trash being spread by Russian nationalist scumbags..

I repeat I am not defending Goncharenko's take, but trying to see if he is a nazi. Personally I reject the idea that anybody against Russian separatism is a nazi since it is an absurd distortion of the wide range of ideas one can find. I don't defend most of the ideas, but simply put, somebody who has stupid illusions about the EU is not the same as somebody who supports fascism. They support something terrible, but not necessarily Right Sector or anything like that.

Goncharenko himself is not clear politically for me, although I tried to see what his politics are. He started off in the Green Party but made his political start in the Party of the Regions. I really don't think Ukrainian nationalists were too popular with that Party and we could see how he was fighting against Yuschenko and Timoshenko. Although I don't have good knowledge of Goncharenko's actual positions, the Party of the Regions of course had a Russian electorate and one of its main political goals was to protect Russians in Ukraine. The first thing that Goncharenko did in the city council of Odessa was to fight for the recognition of the Russian language there ....... against the policies put in place by Ukrainian nationalists who wanted to marginalize Russians. Goncharenko studied in Moscow. This is a strange background for a Ukrainian nationalist. But not so strange when we consider that there are Russian politicians in Ukraine against Russian separatists. Simply put, they see themselves as Russian citizens of Ukraine and have a vision of a multi-cultural Ukraine, like it has been. But I am not sure - I only read a few things by him.

I would appreciate it is Subprole refrains from any mad dog rumors that I am trying to "excuse a fascist" or justify appearing with politicians. But I see here that it was right to question the sources that Subprole were quoting because they are first morons and second, there were mistakes and unproven (and unlikely) allegations there.

I hope that anarchists quit their silly alliances and stop associating with scummy politicians of all shades.

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Ed
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Apr 10 2015 23:15

Can we keep this on topic and with no flaming?

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subprole
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Apr 11 2015 00:02

Thanks for the research, seriously. The problem is it does not change anything. AWU have proven now and before that are open for the collaboration with anyone who is politically positioned a bit "left" to Right Sector, including this liberal nationalist politician and other democratic pro-Maidan trash - which makes them a polical enemy for any anarchist/communist inside and outside Ukraine. Anything else is equivalent to complicity and an apologetic position towards their support for the Kiev regime and the war against the working class and the poor in the East (including the strategy of stopping of food supply, withhold of pensions etc.pp.).

akai
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Apr 11 2015 08:19

Ed, I appreciate that this discussion is a bit off the topic of the original article, but I was responding directly to the accusations made earlier and don't think I was flaming.

Personally I think the problem of collaboration with people of shady politics is very serious and, maybe unlike Subprole, I have a direct interest in this problem because it is common in some countries, where I live now and where I lived, and it has dire consequences for the libertarian movement. So I take these accusations seriously and investigated them. But I am saying here that I also have a really big problem with people who are under the influence of propaganda of authoritarian communists and Russian nationalists, spreading their denounciations without checking them and seemingly only to attack one side of the pathology. Because the idiots who have been supporting the political goals and movements of Russian nationalists, who use the tragic situation of the working class to get people into their movements which do not challenge the state or capital in any way - just the opposite - they tend to put all the "fascism" on one side and overlook the obvious red-brown collaboration.

Here is something in English: http://elpais.com/elpais/2015/02/27/inenglish/1425051026_915897.html It's about the volunteers in Donbass arrested in Spain. They said, "“Half of them are communists and the other half are Nazis,” they explained. “We fought together, communists and Nazis alike […]. We all want the same: social justice and the liberation of Russia from the Ukrainian invasion.”

Running through a lot of stuff on the internet, I can see that a lot of the communists are fully aware that they are collaborating with nazis in defense of Russian statism.

As I have said before in different threads on Libcom, I can see a lot of cooperation with nazis in defense of Russia as a perceived alternative to Western capitalism, which is just an idiot position of these leftists. In Poland we have a party which combines members of the Komsomol, Falanga and various "leftists", including different unionists and more and more people are supporting this type of crap. I would like to see this topic treated as seriously as the silly liberal collaborationism of some of the AWU. I think it is really grotesque to go on about AWU but NOT to mention the so-called anarchists who have been convinced to support projects of integration with nazis in the guise of helping working people against Ukrainian fascists. NOBODY who cooperates with this shit should be beyond criticism.

As I have also said before on Libcom, we have a problem with people holding red and black flags and being cozy with nazis, and even running in elections with them. There is a huge attempt to cover this up and this is done by self-proclaimed anarchists, by syndicalists (SAC, CGT, etc.), even by some "anti-fascists". So I don't care whether you or anybody else calls out AWU for what their silly people are doing. Is it part of a "non-sectarian" culture, particularly valued by some Western anarchists, only its application in the East usually means being "open" to participate in actions with fascists, neo-liberals or whatever. If anybody would like to understand it, they just have to look through criticisms made by KRAS members during Maidan, where it was just answered that it is easy to sit in your house and criticize, but people are out on the street and we have to "go and influence". This will always be the answer of people who are out of the streets in questionable circumstances.

That said, while I don't care if you call out AWU for their sloppy politics, typical of the activist subcultures of E. Europe, I do care if you are just copy-pasting accusations from lunatics with crap politics that later turn out to be not-so-exact. Like saying that someone was the organizer of a massacre. I only see evidence to the contrary. That said, of course this and all other politicians are crap and it's pretty crap when anarchists are sort of uncritically out in the public with them and when the politicians are making their political capital on issues like Kolchenko. But this is certainly not limited to AWU and really I'd like to know why some people are so furious about this, but say nothing about the much closer collaboration integration of say Polish anarchists or some idiots in Spain with politicians. OK, it's maybe not the topic for a discussion about Ukraine, that's true, but I don't see this in general, so it looks like AWU is singled out for something that is not uncommon in this region. It is important to know that regionally, the anarchists of this kind support each other mutually in their convictions that this sort of way of acting is necessary and just part of being involved in larger social movements and that this line is also actively supported by people outside E. Europe.

My comrades have been exposing this for many years and have asked for support from those who are against the integration of "anarchists" and fascists. We have got some support, but some organizations really are fucked as far as this is concerned and will got take a clear position. Subprole, if you are truly against cooperation with fascists, maybe you will also take some time to acquaint people with leftist cooperation with fascists in the Russian separatist areas, and so-called anarchist integration with fascists in Poland, which has a long and disgusting history.

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Apr 26 2015 16:22

‘Where’s our money?’ Thousands of coal miners blockade Ukrainian govt

Right Sector Radicals Attack Striking Coal Miners in Kiev

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Apr 26 2015 17:50

Ukraine’s military mobilization undermined by draft dodgers

Quote:
Rank-and-file soldiers can make upwards of $200 a month, with commanders eligible for far more. But those who shirk the call to duty — or go AWOL, as about 13,000 have — risk fines and years of jail time. In one recent case, a journalist speaking out publicly against the draft was charged with treason.

But that isn’t enough to scare many potential draftees from dodging.

“I would rather sit in prison for three years — and be fed and secure — than serve,” said Andrey, 26, a metal plant worker who was drafted in March. “After a whole year of this government, we still have to work for two days to buy a loaf of bread. I don’t want to go fight for that kind of government.”

[...]

“We were fighting for autonomy, for the right to live and work in our own region. When the army came, they just bombarded us for two months in a row,” Andrey said. “And now I’m supposed to go and fight for them? I don’t think so.”

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Jun 16 2015 16:05

http://michael-hudson.com/2015/05/ukraine-labor-dares-operation-vulture/

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Ukraine’s collapse since the February 2014 coup has become an umbrella for grabitization. Collateral damage in this free-for-all has been labor. Many workers are simply not getting paid, and what they actually are being paid is often illegally low. Employers are taking whatever money is in their business accounts and squirreling it away – preferably abroad, or at least in foreign currency.