One day in the life of protest camp against inauguration of Putin in
Moscow - 14th of May
One day in the life of protest camp against inauguration of Putin in
For photos, check original at http://avtonom.org/node/17655
Before evening Anarchist singer-songwriter "comrade Arkadi" made a
concert. Later, a freemarket was opened, where everyone could leave
their goods and gather what was left by other people. Tomorrow 15th of
May, there will be a lecture on free non-capitalist economy in the camp.
Closer to the evening, participators of the "Food Not Bombs", who have
already developed a routine for feeding the camp, brough food. Evening
assembly become a full general meeting, deciding all important
questions. This evening, several hundred people took part, but
unfortunately not all participators of the camp are interested. It was
decided that a general assembly will be organise every evening 21:00 at
the statue of Abai Kunanbayev.
This time, financial questions were given a special attention. Most of
the people agreed, that due to big turnover of the people in the camp
(in practice nobody may be present 24 hours a day), there should be at
least three treasurers, and not just one, as it was decided 13th of May.
As a matter of fact, there is already a working group on the finances,
which was selected after first general assembly in the camp, it is
allocating necessary money for other groups. Amounts exceeding 5000
rubles (120 euros/$) will be dicscussed in the general assembly.
Also, question of moving the camp was discussed. Some people proposed to
negotiate with Moscow authorities, and to move camp to a spot where
authorities would allow tents (at the moment, people are sleeping
without tents). But other participators were adamant in staying in
Chistye Prudy until the end, and in case of dispersal of the camp, to
move camp to other spot in the boulevard ring of the capital.
Duma deputy Dmitri Gudkov was visiting the camp, and wanted to speak at
the assembly. However he was totally surprised, that his status as a
deputy did not implied any privilegies, and he was asked to raise his
hand and wait for his turn. Deputy preferred to leave the camp.
As we already wrote, during the day 14th of May authorities attempted to
close camp by using park workers from local administration of the
municipality, with a pretext of renovating the grass. Camp participators
moved their property from the grass, but returned in the evening. Photos
of local people prove, that grass around the statute of Kubai was
trampled a long time before the protest camp was established. However
camp participators announced that they may repair the grass on their
own, and necessary funds for that were already raised.
Activists of Autonomous Action distributed special issue of the paper
"Situatsiya" and leaflets.
Some songs of Arkadi in youtube: http://youtu.be/kMj0aZhsLaA,
Schedule for tomorrow 15th of May:
Online translation from the camp:
Updates in Russian:
http://www.novayagazeta.ru/news/56718.html (15 мая),
http://www.novayagazeta.ru/news/56685.html (14 мая)
Updates from other Russian cities: России: http://www.ikd.ru/node/18262
Contact address for those, willing to come to camp:
Contact number for anarchists: 8-985-247-20-65 (Autonomous Action of Moscow)
Also check Russian protests:
Russian protests: thousands march in support of Occupy Abay camp
OccupyAbai was broken up by
OccupyAbai was broken up by police forces in the early morning.
Some photos are available here: http://www.novayagazeta.ru/photos/52618.html
Anarchists' active engagement
Anarchists' active engagement in anti-Putin protests is a shame and betrayal of anarchist ideals. Autonomous Action - Moscow are social democrats, not anarchists. End of story.
bonobo wrote: russian
Anarchists have no nationality. You attempted to reveal unanarchist, but you ended up revealing your own unanarchism. FAIL
After eviction, Occupy camp
After eviction, Occupy camp of Moscow is reborn in Kudrinskaya square
For photos, check original at http://avtonom.org/node/17676
In morning of 16th of August Occupy camp of Moscow ("Occupy Abai") was
evicted from Chistie Prudy after a court order, but it was
re-established the same day at Kudrinskaya square (also known as
Revolution square). Lectures, infocenter and field kitchen (both
omnivorous and vegan) were relaunched. 20 PM several hundreds of people
gathered in the square. During the evening, a police officer approached
several times Food Not Bombs activists, distributing vegan food, and
demanded them to quit distribution, as they allegedly did not had
necessary permissions to distribute food. Activists answered, that they
just distribute food and offer it to their friends. Around 21:30 OMON
riot police showed up at the vegan kitchen. Five activists were
arrested, and police also confiscated food, part of the food, some
journals which were around, and most importantly a box with donations.
Protesters were enraged, and with shouts "thieves" they blocked police
vans, demanding release of the comrades. People formed chains, which
were attacked by OMON, people were pulled over and arrested, some
comrades were dearrested.
Eventually protesters attempted to block Sadovaya ring road, but cops
quickly cleared them. OMON also managed to disperse chains.
Evening assembly, which was disturbed by arrest, made a majority
decision to stay in the Kudrinskaya square only when OMON makes an all
out attack against the camp.
Eventually police administration promised that as long as protesters are
not trampling the grass (original camp in Kubai statue was evicted after
protestors allegedly trampled grass), and promised to release arrested,
with exception of those who pierced tyres of police vans and assaulted
riot police. Assembly participators were wondering, how come police may
define, who should be kept under arrest. After a short discussion, it
was almost unanimously decided that there will not be a compromise with
police, and all of the 20 arrested kept in Presnenskoye police station
should be released.
Protesters saw, how a group of arrested was taken from a van with
pierced wheels to another van. Arrested were shouting that police beats
them, and does not allow them to take their property with them.
Main accomplishment of 16th of May is that camp in Revolution square
managed to defend itself.
I am not a fan of joint
I am not a fan of joint protests with weird coalitions of neoliberals, nationalists, bolsheviks and whatever other shit gets together to be against Putin. Especially if people are not up front about what kind of shit there is and make it sound like some nice anarchist camp. Personally I sometimes go to protests organized by unions I don't like, but we have a critical view and say straight up. And I saw different photos and protocols and whatnot from Abai, and see how it is run by political party scum, who clearly just want to change who is in power. Worst of all are the nationalists and the fucking agreement not to kick them and their hate propaganda out. Or even to ban their propaganda.
The inevitable consequences of any collaboration with nazis:
> Неизбежное следствие любого коллаборационизма с нацистами
From the Protocol of the Assembly Barricade from May 18 2012, Occupy Abai
> Из Протокола Ассамблеи #Баррикады от 18 мая 2012 года #ОккупайАбай:
Inciting ethnic strife in the camp:
> 4. Разжигание национальной розни в лагере.
> Предложение. Снять данный вопрос с повестки Ассамблеи.
Proposal - to remove this question from the agenda of the Assembly
> Замечание. Здесь собрались люди с разными взглядами, в т.ч. политическими.
> Даже если Ассамблея решит, люди не откажутся от своих взглядов. Мы не хотим
> раскола и хотим действовать вместе, договариваться.
Note: People with different points of views, including political,
gathered here. Even if the Assembly decides this, people will not give
up their views. We don't want a split and we want to act together, to
come to agreement.
> Замечание. Запрет на пропаганду не означает, что человек должен отказаться
> от своих взглядов. На Чистых Прудах был прецедент, когда раздавались
> листовки о том, что нужно очистить страну от мигрантов. В связи с этим было
> принято правило о запрете пропаганды национализма.
Note: Banning propaganda does not mean that somebody has to deny their
views. At Chistiye Prudi there was a precedent, when leaflets where
handed out saying that you have to clean the country of immigrants. In
connection with this, a rule was adopted against propaganda of
> Замечание. Требование о запрете какой-либо пропаганде недопустимо.
> Пропаганда - это листовки, это лекции. Если сегодня Ассамблея запрещает
> националистическую пропаганду, то завтра можно запретить социалистическую,
> либертарианскую и пр.
Note: The demand to ban any type of propaganda is not acceptable.
Propaganda - that is leaflets or lectures. If the Assembly bans
nationalist propaganda today, then tomorrow it can ban socialist or
libertarian (capitalist) propaganda.
> Снять данный вопрос с повестки?
> Снять 116. Оставить 60.
Take this question off the agenda?
Take it off: 116, Leave it : 60
> Вопрос пропаганды национализма не обсуждать. Принято, большинство.
>Decided: The question of nationalist propaganda will not be discussed. Adopted by majority.
> Тут: http://alixesby.livejournal.com/13917.html
Camp of the “Radical”
Camp of the “Radical” Opposition: First Conclusions
Now that the authorities have broken up the protest camp of the radical anti-Putin opposition at Chistye Prudy in Moscow, the time has come to sum up the first provisional results of the new wave of political protests in Russia. The opposition intends to continue the protests, but it is now quite possible to draw certain conclusions and extract lessons of some sort.
First of all, it is quite obvious that the overwhelming majority of the population have observed the latest round in the struggle for political power with complete indifference. Some by habit will complain about the passivity and servility of Russian citizens, but this time such indifference was an absolutely healthy reaction of the working people: it is no business of theirs who will make up the ruling bourgeois group, considering that no change in social policy is at stake. As always, of course, it was possible to find both paid or volunteer supporters of “order” and a rag-tag crowd of politicians with grudges, glamorous personalities (who, by the way, were only yesterday on Putin’s side), “brains of the nation” and marginal tough guys, but even in the enormous capital could they could be counted in the advertized “millions.” The demonstrations of the authorities and the opposition were attended at most by a few tens of thousands. In the provinces they are hardly of interest to anyone; there are only hundreds or at most a few thousand who cared about the political standoff. The majority of people have quite different problems: low wages, rising prices, less access to education and healthcare, lack of money to pay for residential and municipal services, and so on.
The second point. However painful it may be for some leftists to recognize it, the protests have taken place under the complete ideological hegemony of liberal supporters of capitalism and the free market. Anarchists, anti-fascists and “communists” of all hues and shades may try as they like to raise social themes and slogans, but this has no effect on the general course and chief demands of the movement. The mood of the bulk of the opposition’s supporters in the capital can be judged from the results of the presidential elections (although they may have been manipulated): although in the country as a whole the largest number of opposition votes went to the national-Stalinist Zyuganov, in Moscow he was overtaken by the multibillionaire oligarch Prokhorov, who openly called for revision of the Labor Code, abolition of restrictions on working hours and overtime pay and further liberalization of dismissals. When on May 6 opposition protestors clashed with the police, the wave brought the “leftists” to the fore, as they did not fail to joyfully announce (1). However, this did nothing to enhance their influence on events. The head of the protest camp at Chistye Prudy was Ilya Yashin, one of the leaders of the ultra-liberal and pro-capitalist movement Solidarity. The anarchists tried to foist their “camp regulations” on him—this did not change the situation. Despite attempts by the “leftists” to discuss social issues, the protestors’ demands remained the same: cancellation of Putin’s inauguration, his resignation from the post of president, and the holding of new “honest” elections (that is, elections whose results would suit the opposition). In this situation, the leftists perform the task of providing the bourgeois liberals with the appearance of mass support. And the liberals understand very well that the “marginals” whom they so despise are now working for them. For as one of the liberals at the protest camp put it, “politics is about who is better at using whom.” (2)
Third point. Although the protestors called themselves “Occupy Abai” and referred to a decision-taking assembly, the Russian movement is quite different in character from the May 15 movement in Spain or Occupy Wall Street. For example, the observer Andrew Rivkin writes in The Guardian: “It is in fact eerily like the Zuccotti park camp - until you look at Occupy Abay's demands, and realise that New York might as well be a galaxy far, far away” (3). The movement in the United States fights against the greed of the corporations and condemns the consequences of capitalist policy. The Russian protestors put forward purely political demands to replace the individuals in power. Some “leftists” also understand this. In answer to the question “What do you think, is what was done at Chistye Prudy similar in content to the movement of the indignados (indignant ones) in Spain or Occupy Wall Street in the United States?” one of the participants (a member of the group “Autonomous Action”) admitted: “It seems to me, it is certainly similar in form, but not in content. It is a self-managing movement with a horizontal structure and without leaders, with all decisions taken at a general assembly. But the demands of this movement are quite abstract and reformist. The indignados and Occupy Wall Street are more social—there people protest against the social policy of the authorities, against the hegemony of the banks, against the established socioeconomic system. Here, by contrast, when I asked which slogan they regard as the quintessence of what is going on, the majority of people immediately replied: “Russia without Putin”.” (4) Thus, in its essence, this movement in Russia has no grounds or right to regard itself as part of the worldwide Occupy movement.
Fourth point. A characteristic feature of the current protests is the willingness of the “leftists” to accept participation in a single movement together with neo-fascists. The causes of this turn of events, which surprised many people accustomed to the long tradition of confrontation between ultra-rightists and anti-fascists, are to be sought both in the growing popularity of national-patriotic and “new right” ideas among “leftists” and in banal politicking—that is, elementary lack of principle. The neo-fascists (“Russian nationalists”) actively joined the very first anti-Putin protests immediately after the parliamentary elections of December 2011, and remain an invariable, inseparable and indisputable part of the opposition conglomerate. It should be acknowledged that some leftists at first objected quite loudly to cooperation with the neo-fascists, fearing among other things that the anti-Putin protests would be discredited (see, for instance, the declaration made on the issue by the “January 19 Committee”) (5). But because these objections were not supported by their liberal and “general civic” allies in the movement, the “leftists” were forced to bow to the inevitable. When at the beginning of the year the bloc of the radical opposition formally organized itself as a “civic movement,” its newly formed leading body or “civic council” was constituted as a coalition with the following quotas: 10 seats for the liberals, 10 for the ultra-right, 10 for the left, and 30 for various “civic” groups and initiatives (including a number of neo-fascist character).
Unfortunately, some groups calling themselves anarchist or including anarchists are also represented: they have 2 of the 10 seats in the “left fraction.” (6) In addition, anarchists participate in at least 4 of the “civic” groups: “Food Not Bombs,” the Moscow Assembly, the January 19 Committee, and the Rainbow Keepers (7).
Judging by media reports, neo-fascists also took part in the clashes that occurred during the opposition demonstration of May 6 in Moscow. Moreover, as the reports emphasized, no conflicts were observed between them and the “anti-fascist leftists.” As at the time of the winter protests, everyone was astonished to see them marching quite peacefully together in the same demonstrations, although in separate columns and under different slogans. Neo-fascists actively participated in the camp at Chistye Prudy (8). One of the fascist leaders, Alexander Belov, called on the Russian nationalists to go there, because “it is an excellent place for propaganda, for honing our skills.” (9) During the first few days there were about 20 neo-fascists at the camp, then their number grew. They recruited supporters everywhere, “used donations to buy food and distributed it to participants without charge.” (10) What is more, they were entrusted with the task of guarding the Occupy Abai camp—that is, they assumed strong-arm policing functions! (11) Nazis “guarding” the camp of the May 15 movement [in Spain] or Occupy Wall Street? It is hard even to imagine a more shameful tragicomedy.
Some “leftists” justified their cooperation with the neo-fascists with excuses like: “But what can we do?” I do not know which is more important here—political helplessness or hypocrisy. They could at least have made a fuss, demanded the departure of the ultra-rightists, and threatened to leave themselves—“It’s either them or us.” Apparently nothing of the sort took place. It is not surprising that some people who in June 2011 took part in the first assemblies of indignados in Moscow this time categorically refused to participate in the current “assemblies.”
I conclude that the current anti-Putin movement is just as reactionary and bourgeois in its orientation and content as the Putin regime. Real anarchists and leftists (even if today they are in the minority) do not want to choose the lesser of these evils.
(7) http://www.civmo.com/%D0%BE-%D0%BD%D0%B0%D1%81-%D0%B8-%D0%BD%D0%B0%D1%88%D0%B5%D0%BC-%D0%B4%D0%B2%D0%B8%D0%B6%D0%B5%D0%BD%D0%B8%D0%B8/%D1%83%D1%87%D0%B0%D1%81%D1%82%D0%BD%D0%B8%D0%BA%D0%B8-%D0%B3%D1%80%D0%B0%D0%B6%D0%B4%D0%B0%D0%BD%D1%81 %D0%BA%D0%BE%D0%B3%D0%BE-%D0%B4%D0%B2%D0%B8%D0%B6%D0%B5%D0%BD%D0%B8%D1%8F/
(11) http://kolobok1973.livejournal.com/1938997.html; http://anatrrra.livejournal.com/202855.html#cutid1
Source: http://www.aitrus.info/node/2171 (web-site of IWA section in Russian Region)