A statement by London Anarchist Federation (AF Nomads) on the war in Ukraine.
Originally published by Organise!
As anarchists we are against all state wars and stand in solidarity with the victims of those wars; the people whose lives will be destroyed as “collateral damage” in their rulers’ pursuit of power. Whoever “wins” this war, it it hard to see this improving the lives of either the people of Ukraine or the people of Russia. Many will die, many more will have their lives ruined, and the consequences of this war will impoverish the people suffering under both governments.
We hope that out of this bloodshed the people of all the involved countries are not duped into an even more aggressive nationalism and support for their corrupt leaders, but see these leaders for what they really are; power mongers hiding behind nationalist lies who care nothing for their subjects and will use them as cannon fodder for their own objectives. “National glory” and “state interests” have always been bought with the blood of common people who share no interests with the rulers that demand their sacrifice.
However, while we a neither fans of the Ukrainian state, the Russian state, or the western states supporting Ukraine, the majority of the blame for this war clearly lays at the feet of Moscow. This is an imperialist war of aggression against a territory that has traditionally suffered horribly under the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. But we must also be clear that while the Russian state may be the aggressor, the Ukrainian state is still a despot over its own people, and its western supporters are no less imperialist than Russia, even if they may be the lesser of two evils in this specific situation.
In the face of this disaster, our solidarity goes out to all our Ukrainian comrades. Ukrainian anarchists are now forced to choose whether to fight against Russian imperialism and risk being drawn into practical support for nationalist and militarist institutions that all anarchist oppose, or to attempt to oppose all military action and risk allowing the people of Ukraine to have a puppet state forced upon them that is likely to be even worse than the current Ukrainian state. We do not envy those having to make this choice, and we would not feel comfortable passing judgement on any of our comrades for whichever choice they make. We wish you all luck.
Our solidarity to the Russian and Belarusian anarchists who are no doubt doing what they can to oppose this war, and anyone else working against the war within those states. War very often brings an upsurge in nationalism and internal repression, and the situation is likely to become even harder for our comrades in those countries, who already have to work under a great deal of repression.
Our solidarity also goes out to The Resistance Committee and the peoples of Ukraine who have taken this stand against fascism and forces of the imperial invasion.
Our solidarity also goes out to the anti-war demonstrators around the world but especially to those in Russia and Belarus who are rising up against the tyranny that silences them.
And finally, Our solidarity goes out to all those who have self organised to provided much needed support and mutual aid not only to those fighting in Ukraine but also to the refugees.
If you are able to provide material solidarity please do so via these channels:
Against all states and against all their wars! ■
London Anarchist Federation.