All support for Russia’s military action for the defeat of the Nazi government in Kiev, NATO/US/ European Union front man! By worker-controlled People’s Republics across Ukraine!
The left and the workers’ movement must fight for all nations to recognize the right to self-determination of people’s republics! For People’s Republics throughout Ukraine!
Putin has launched a war operation against the Kiev government. His aim is to demilitarize and denazify Ukraine. Zelensky ordered martial law in Ukraine. Ukrainian airspace was formally closed by the Kiev government, which, however, no longer controls it. The Russian army is carrying out a successful attack, impossible to defeat, with few civilian casualties. Russian Special Forces units advanced towards Kiev. Paratroopers descended on the capital. The Ukrainian navy was destroyed. Dozens of Ukrainian border guards fled to Russia. Several Ukrainian army units abandoned their positions.
The military action was preceded by a selective hunt for Ukrainian Nazis. On February 23, the Russian Secret Service (FSB) averted an extremist attack on Crimea, prepared by “Right Sector” militants supervised from Kiev. Rumour has it that the head of the Nazi Azov battalion of the Ukrainian National Guard, known as the “White Leader”, Andriy Biletsky, has fled to Poland. Putin said he will bring justice to the Nazis who have barbarized the country in recent years and will find them wherever they are.
Putin was buffeted by the historic demand of the people’s republics of Donetsk and Lugansk to formally recognize their independence from the Kiev government, which he did on 22 February. Recognition of the republics by the Russian Federation was supported by the countries of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CTO), Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Syria and the Houthi government in Yemen. But important though this formal international recognition was, it could not stop there while Kiev’s bombing of the recognized republics continued. That would be a profound demoralization for Putin. Zelensky provoked the Russian military response. He has not been able to defend himself against Russia so far, and he has not had the military support he expected from his imperialist masters.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said “There are no NATO forces on the territory of Ukraine, nor are there any plans to send them there. We support Ukraine, but we provide firm security guarantees only to NATO allies. What we’re doing is defensive.” Stoltenberg noted that the deployment would include part of NATO’s 40,000-strong rapid reaction force, including a highly prepared unit of 7,000, mostly French, and an air wing under French command. NATO will meet on February 25th to activate a defence plan from its member countries.
The imperialist media that desperately create factoids to demonize the Russian special operation is the same one that for the last eight years supressed, or at least minimized, the Nazi atrocities against the oppressed peoples of Ukraine. All the imperialist war media outlets hid the attacks suffered by the Russian population throughout Ukraine. And now they censor information about the fact that in recent days, supported by the US and many imperialist countries, Kiev has increased attacks against the Donbass region, hitting schools and homes. The mainstream media hides the fact that these attacks were preceded by barbaric atrocities such as those committed against the Federation of Trade Unions of Odessa, the House of Trade Unions, on May 3, 2014, when 43 anti-Maidan people were tortured, executed by shooting, or burned alive while imprisoned in the Federation building that was set on fire by the “Right Sector”. Another 174 trade unionists and communists were injured. The leftist organizations, PCU and Borotba, suffered the most. Most of those who were burned at the Casa dos Unions were their members. None of these media outlets today want to remember the Mariupol massacre of May 9, 2014, when more than 100 people were shot by Nazi death squads, on the day of commemoration of the USSR’s victory over Hitler’s Nazism in 1945.
The pro-imperialist “neither-nor” world left
The majority of the world left, much of which constitute a petty bourgeois media layer, follow “critically” the orientation of the big bourgeois media, assuming there is a supposed ‘third camp’ in the war. They defend an ideal wall on which they climb so as not to directly assume the positions of imperialism, covering their shameful capitulation with a supposed policy against all capitalists. That left that imperialism likes says “neither Russia nor NATO, for Ukraine!”. This left calls itself Marxist, and justifies its pro-imperialist defeatism because Russia would be “imperialist” for “invading” Ukraine. But this position is opposed to that of Marxism. For Marxism, imperialism is the expansionist policy of finance capital, which demands economic domination over other nations. When Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1990 he did not turn Iraq into an imperialist country. Russia, despite its military and energy might inherited from the USSR and developed in recent years, is still a backward country, whose GDP is practically the size of Brazil after all the damage that the 2016 coup against Dilma Rousseff and then Bolsonaro did to the country. Putin may want to lead an imperialist power, but this status in the struggle between states does not depend on his will.
We also reject the imperialist version that it all started with “the Russian invasion of Ukraine”. War is a relationship. A dialectical relationship far beyond the relationship between Russia and Ukraine. First, it is a war provoked by the insatiable expansionism of finance capital towards Eastern Europe since the 1980s, an offensive that ended up playing two historically symbiotic nations one against the other, from the moment it sparked a Nazi insurrection in 2014. against the pro-Russian government. This also refers to the future of how imperialism will respond to Putin and how Putin will respond to imperialism’s response.
The appetites of imperialist finance capital have no limits. After the counter-revolutionary tragedy in the USSR and Eastern Europe, after 30 years of NATO expansion to the East, of cumulative economic sanctions to strangle Russia, in the last eight years they resorted to using neo-Nazis as front men in their expansionist march to the East. Of the 30 NATO members, 14 are former Eastern European workers states or directly former Balkanized USSR republics (Poland, Estonia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovenia, North Macedonia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, Albania, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia , Latvia, …). With Ukraine joining NATO, no less than half of the countries in the Atlanticist alliance would be made up of countries captured from the enemy, from the old Warsaw pact.
For all these reasons, we believe that workers and oppressed minorities benefit from this anti-fascist and anti-imperialist action and therefore should support it. Just as they must reject all economic sanctions from imperialism to strangle Russia and even more we must reject any military reaction from NATO. And beyond that, the workers of the world must take advantage of Russian preventive-defensive military action against the expansion of NATO on its borders and we defend the full democratic right of the people’s republics of Lugansk, Donetsk, Kharkov and any other, of all national minorities for self-determination in relation to the Ukrainian central government, puppet of imperialism and xenophobic in relation to the other peoples of Ukraine, and the extension of this right to remain independent republics or unite with Russia, if they wish.
We advocate that the workers’ movement in each country fight for all countries to recognize the right to self-determination of people’s republics!
We advocate that this anti-Nazi, anti-imperialist and national liberation struggle becomes a socialist struggle for workers-controlled people’s republics throughout Ukraine!