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Antifascist Resources on Ukraine

By staff - Three Way Fight, March 2, 2022

In this post we offer an annotated list of resources on Russia's February 2022 invasion of Ukraine and the background to the crisis. We don't agree with every point in all of the articles, but we believe that all of them provide important information and make important contributions to the discussion. We will update this post as we learn of new resources to include.

Voices from Ukraine

Taras Bilous, “A letter to the western left from Kyiv (February 2022) (Cached here.)
This open letter by a young Ukrainian leftist challenges those western leftists who have refused to criticize Russia out of a distorted concept of anti-imperialism. “Part of the responsibility for what is happening rests with you.”

War and anarchists: anti-authoritarian perspectives on Ukraine (CrimethInc., February 2022)
This text, written by several anti-authoritarian activists from Ukraine, offers an anarchist perspective on events from the Maidan protests of 2013-2014 to the eve of the 2022 Russian invasion. It provides helpful information about events and some of the political forces, but has also been criticized for minimizing the reality of Ukrainian far right nationalism. The Russian group Anarchist Fighter (or Militant Anarchist) offers a useful response here.

War and occupation: life and death across the front line: Interview with Olena Skomoroshchenko of the Social Democratic Party of Ukraine (Transnational Solidarity Network, November 2019)
This 2019 interview with the SDPU’s representative to the Socialist International discusses Ukraine’s economic and social situation, the war in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, and the impact of Volodymyr Zelensky's 2019 election as president.

Solidarity and critique

LeftEast Condemns Putin’s Imperial War Against Ukraine (LeftEast, February 2022)
LeftEast is a collective of intellectuals and activists from many different countries and nationalities, predominantly eastern European. This statement holds the Russian state to account as the main aggressor, yet it also criticizes the U.S. and NATO for fueling the crisis and the Ukrainian government for repressive and discriminatory policies.

Why no mass protests in Russia?” (interview with Grigory Yudin) (Meduza, February 2022)
Contrary to the misleading title, sociologist Yudin argues that relative to the repressive consequences of protesting, “people are coming out in force.” The interview discusses antiwar sentiment and likely impact of the Ukraine invasion on Russia.

Sharing the Shame: A Letter from Internationalists in China (Chuǎng, March 2022)
This letter from an anonymous group of leftists in China provides a useful perspective on how Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has been perceived within the Chinese left. “As internationalists, we are firmly against the invasion by Russia, to the same degree that we are against NATO’s reckless expansion. What we’re in support of is not the Ukrainian government, but the right of the Ukrainian people to be free from any imperialist interference.”

Tony Bramble, “No to war, no to imperialism (Red Flag, February 2022)
A useful statement from an Australian Trotskyist organization. “The left, the only consistent opponents of militarism and war, needs to raise its voice against a Russian invasion and against the imperial ambitions of Putin and his authoritarian state…. [But] everything the US accuses Moscow of it has done itself for many decades and continues to do all around the world, usually with the full backing of its ‘democratic’ allies.”

Gilbert Achcar, “A memorandum on the radical anti-imperialist position regarding the war in Ukraine (New Politics, February 2022)
This statement addresses a number of important specific issues, such as demanding withdrawal of troops rather than just a cease fire, opposing direct military intervention by one imperial force against another, and advocating unconditional delivery of defensive weapons to the victims of aggression. These issues are important for us to consider, whether or not we agree with Achcar's specific positions.

Analysis of far right forces

Atlanta Antifascists, “War in Ukraine… Where are the Fascists? (February 2022)
This 13-minute video presentation provides a helpful introduction. “While none of the states involved are ruled directly by open fascists, there are fascist adventurers present in Ukraine, Russia, and also within the US military.”

Vyacheslav Likhachev, “The Far Right in the Conflict between Russia and Ukraine (Institut français des relations internationales 7/2016)
A detailed study of both Ukrainian and Russian “radical nationalists” before, during, and after the events of 2014, including the Maidan revolution, Russia’s annexation of Crimea, and the formation of the separatist “people’s republics” in eastern Ukraine. This was published in 2016 but still provides useful background.

Diane Francis, “Vlad’s Wagner (Kyiv Post, December 2021) (Cached here.)
Report by a mainstream journalist on the Wagner Group, the private armed force of Russian mercenaries that works closely with the Russian state. Wagner soldiers helped Russia annex Crimea and invade eastern Ukraine in 2014, and they have also operated in Syria and over a dozen African countries.

Lev Golinkin, “Neo-Nazis and the Far Right Are On the March in Ukraine (The Nation, February 2019) (Cached here.)
Putin’s claim that neo-Nazis run Ukraine is false and self-serving, but fascists do have a significant presence within the Ukrainian military and police, far rightists have violently attacked Roma and LGBT communities repeatedly, and World War 2-era Nazi collaborators have been widely (and officially) glorified.

Far rightists and the 2014 revolution

Three Way Fight published a series of articles in the immediate aftermath of Ukraine's 2014 revolution. Although many of the specifics have changed, the basic analysis remains relevant: 

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are not the official position of the IWW (or even the IWW’s EUC) and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone but the author.

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