Ukraine: war as a means of social control

October 19, 2014

In Ukraine the tumultuous social movement of last winter has been overtaken, divided, and almost silenced, by military conflict. It is a sobering contrast to those times in history, for example at the end of the first and

The “anti militarist coalition” on the Moscow march on 21 September. (See "about photo", below.)

The “anti militarist coalition” on the Moscow march on 21 September. (See “about photo”, below.)

second world wars, when military conflict produced social revolts. This article attempts to consider the historical parallels and what they mean for socialists.

Expressions of discontent around social issues continued to spread across Ukraine – including in the eastern regions – after the overthrow of the government Viktor Yanukovich in Kyiv in February. Some of these protests fed into the so-called “anti Maidan” movement. that actually mirrored the Maidan movement in many ways. But on both sides, corrosive nationalism took its toll. In the Read the rest of this entry »

Ukraine: truce the least bad option, but it gave space to fascists on all sides

October 19, 2014

This guest post, outlining the current political situation in Ukraine, is by DENIS from the Autonomous Workers Union of Ukraine. It is based on a talk he gave at the Anarchist Book Fair in London on 18 October

In terms of class theory, the Maidan protests [that overthrew president Viktor Yanukovych in February] can be defined as a bourgeois democratic movement. aiming at restoring the liberal political and individual rights and Read the rest of this entry »

Social protest and repression in Donbass

October 19, 2014

News about social protests is coming out of Donbass, the region controlled by separatist forces in eastern Ukraine. The protesters have faced violent repression and threats from the separatist governments whose policies they are challenging.

On 4 October, local people in Sverdlovsk (in Luhansk region, in separatist-controlled territory) protested at the headquarters of the security service of Ukraine (SBU) about the shortage of wage payments and of food, the collapse of the banking system, and against plunder and robberies by the paramilitaries. That night, protesters’ houses were attacked with hand grenades. On 5 October, the protesters went out again, demanding the Read the rest of this entry »

Scotland: fight against austerity, against established politics

October 10, 2014

People in Scotland need to organise themselves on social issues and transcend the political status quo – not join the SNP – argues CATHERINE MILLIGAN, a socialist and community activist on the Castlemilk housing scheme in Glasgow.

Where do we go from here, after the Scottish independence referendum? The essence of the “Yes” campaign, for independence, was a drive against the

demo against bedroom tax

Demonstrating against the bedroom tax, Glasgow, September 2013

status quo, against established politics. It was a fight against unfairness, inequality and poverty.

It brought to light the very undemocratic way our country is run. It created a vehicle, via the referendum, for ideas on how to change it – ideas such as the nationalisation of the banks and oil industry; the promotion of renewable energy, with wealth redistributed by the creation of jobs, for example by reinvesting into the building of houses; support for the NHS; and fairer representation of our communities in the political arena. These were some of ideas that were being advocated.

After the referendum decided against independence, why step back and advocate for the Scottish National Party (SNP)? This is a downright travesty – a road to frustration and heartache.

Those advocating a vote for the SNP lack vision, and only serve to tie the working class further into the status quo. A vote for the SNP is no way Read the rest of this entry »

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