Rumours of war resound noisily in Europe again, cannons are loaded, fighter-bombers are packed with murderous bullets and bombs, missiles point their nuclear warheads at their future objectives.
These words we wrote in 2014 are more than ever relevant today about the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. If capitalism is viscerally a maker of evils, generating misery, climate and health crises, we had almost “forgotten” that it was and remains undoubtedly a warmonger! Today, the military offensive is launched: there are reports of bombings in the Donbass, Odessa, Kiev, Mariupol, Kharkov…
Originally published by TŘÍDNÍ VÁLKA (Class War).
Proletarians in Russian uniform. For years now, you have been sent around the world to protect the interests of “the Russian Nation”. It started with “defending territorial integrity of Russia” against North Caucasian separatists, then continued with “protecting Ossetians in Georgia” only to culminate in “protecting Russian brothers and sisters against Bandera’s hordes in Ukraine” and “legitimate government of Syria, against Islamist terrorists”.
The similar story was told to generations of proletarians, both “soldiers” and “civilians” in every previous capitalist conflict all over the world in order to make them bleed on military front or in factories behind the lines, on the production front, on the home front… They were fighting for “Tsar” or “Socialism” or “Nation” or “Democracy” or “Lebensraum” or “Christianity” or “Islam”. And the same fairy tale is told to proletarians in uniform of USA, Turkey, UK, Israel, Ukraine, Assad-controlled Syria, Daesh, Rojava, Georgia, Donetsk and Lugansk, Iran, regions managed by Hezbollah, Hamas… and any other national, regional, religious or other false community.
Proletarians in Ukrainian uniform. Your own bourgeoisie makes you believe that you have a homeland to defend against the “Russian aggressor”, that you should join your own exploiters and demand Ukraine to accede to the European Union or NATO. But like all proletarians everywhere in the world, you have only your chains of wage slaves to lose.
Proletarians on the home front. Once again, you are being told to sacrifice yourself, to be “more productive”, to be “more flexible”, to “postpone” the satisfaction of your immediate needs (even to the point of rather going hungry, than eating “food of the enemy”), etc. All that for the greater good of the Nation. You are told to unquestionably support this or that “Holy War”, to forget about strikes and disruption of production of war material, to willingly send your sons, brothers, husbands and fathers to become martyrs for the profits of your bourgeois masters.
Capital and its State had always found a way how to turn proletarians into cannon fodder and let them slaughter each other under the flag of this or that “Motherland”. As if we, the proletariat, the exploited class, had any country to defend. As if the “national interests” represented anything else than the interests of the ruling class. War and the subsequent scramble for reconstruction are nothing else than a concrete form of competition between various capitalist factions. It is an expression of their need to expand their market in order to compensate for the decreasing rate of profit. At the same time, war serves to divide our class along national, regional, religious, political, etc. lines in order to suppress the class struggle and break the international solidarity of the proletariat. Ultimately war serves to physically dispose of the redundant labor force. Or in other words, to slaughter us…
“Russian” soldiers, you are stationed in Syria or Ukraine to kill and be killed by people who just like you and your relatives back home are forced to sell their labor power to Capital in order to survive, people who are a part of the same exploited class as you, people who are your proletarian brothers and sisters on “the other side”. All those military adventures, exercises and arms races are starting to cripple Capital’s ability to appease the proletariat by throwing it breadcrumbs from the bourgeois table.
Capitalism can only bring us exploitation, misery, alienation, war and destruction as it always did. The global proletariat stands at the crossroad: to rise up against it or to fall into the biggest human meat grinder in the history. All around the world, more or less open military conflicts and standoffs between various bourgeois factions are flaring up. Alliances and counter-alliances are being formed and breached, with more and more obvious centralization into few super-blocks. Ukraine is at the center of all that and the war there threatens to escalate into global conflict, that has a potential to end all life on this planet.
Just like in Iran, Iraq, Chile, Lebanon, Colombia, and quite recently in Kazakhstan, the only alternative for the proletariat in Russia and in the Ukraine is to step up the confrontation with the State and directly attack its institutions and expropriate the goods and means of production. Let’s not just protest in the streets, but let’s spread and generalize strikes and develop the class struggle into the production front! Let’s turn the struggle of soldiers’ relatives, who had repeatedly shown in the past a strong anti-war stance into generalized revolutionary defeatist struggle, without limitations of any legalist ideology!
Revolutionary defeatism means to organize all actions aiming to undermine the morale of the troops as well as to prevent dispatching proletarians to the slaughter…
Revolutionary defeatism means to organize the most massive desertion and cease fire between proletarians in uniform on both sides of the frontline, to leave distant fronts and to bring war, not between proletarians but between classes, i.e. class war, into centers of war super-powers…
Revolutionary defeatism means to encourage fraternization, mutinies, turning the guns against the organizers of war carnage, i.e. “our” bourgeoisie and their lackeys…
Revolutionary defeatism means the most determined and offensive action with a view to turning the imperialist war into revolutionary war for the abolition of this class society based on starvation and war, revolutionary war for communism…
You, “Russian soldiers” and “Ukrainian soldiers”, proletarians in the armies of the Russian and Ukrainian bourgeoisies, have no other alternative (if you want to live rather than go on surviving, if not croaking on the next fields of horror!) than to refuse to once again serve as global henchmen of their interests! Just like many of your predecessors in the war in Chechnya, let’s break the ranks and fight no more! Just like the “Red Army” soldiers in Afghanistan or American soldiers in Vietnam, you can shoot or “frag” your own officers! Just like the proletarians with or without uniform in World War I, let’s mutiny and rise up together and turn the global capitalist war into the civil war for the communist revolution!
We of course don’t want to limit ourselves while addressing only to proletarians in Russian or Ukrainian uniform but also to our struggling class brothers and sisters all over the world and urge them to follow and develop examples of defeatism already existing, e.g. soldiers in Iran who expressed their refusal to be used in the repression against our class movements in 2018, policemen and militiamen in Iraq who did the same some months later during the riots that engulfed half of the country from Basra to Baghdad, as well as the police and military in Kazakhstan earlier this year who refused to suppress the proletarian uprising, forcing the Russian gendarmerie to intervene to restore the capitalist order…
Proletarians with and without uniform, let’s organize together against the capitalist system of exploitation of the human labor that lies in the root of all the misery, all the State oppression and all the wars!
Proletarians, never ever forget that it’s our class brothers and sisters at the time who stopped the WW1 while deserting massively, mutinying collectively and making the social revolution!!!
Down with the exploiters! From Moscow to Tehran to Washington to Kiev to the whole world!
Against nationalism, sectarianism, militarism, we oppose the international and internationalist proletarian solidarity!
Let’s turn this war into class war for the global communist revolution!
Class War – February 24th, 2022
War preparations between Ukraine and Russia – Show or reality? https://www.autistici.org/tridnivalka/war-preparations-between-ukraine-and-russia-show-or-reality/
Neither Ukrainian nor Russian! – Let’s develop our own camp, the third camp, that of social revolution! https://www.autistici.org/tridnivalka/neither-ukrainian-nor-russian/