Statement about the situation in Ukraine from AWU (Autonomous Workers Union)

From Avtonomia

Civil war began in Ukraine yesterday. A less than peaceful demonstration clashed with state defense forces and divisions formed by the adherents of the current government near the Vekhovna Rada (Parliament). On February 18, police, together with the paramilitaries, arranged a bloodbath in the governmental quarters during which numerous demonstrators were killed. Butchers from the special divisions finished off arrestees. Deputies of the ruling Party of Regions and their bourgeois lackeys from the “Communist” Party of Ukraine fled from the Parliament through an underground tunnel. The vote for constitutional amendments, intended to limit presidential power, did not take place after all. After their defeat in the governmental quarters, demonstrators retreated to the Maidan. At 6 P.M., the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Internal Security Bureau (SBU) declared an ultimatum to the protesters, demanding their dispersal. At 8:00 P.M., special police forces and paramilitaries, equipped with water cannons and armored vehicles, began their raid on the barricades. Police, the special divisions of SBU, as well as pro-governmental troopers made use of their firearms. However, the protesters managed to burn down one of the armored police vehicles, and it turned out that governmental forces were not the only ones in possession of guns. According to the data released by the police (on February, 19, 4 p.m.), 24 people were killed: 14 protesters and 10 policemen. Thirty-one policemen received gunshot wounds. Even if their estimate of losses on the side of the police is accurate, the number of victims among the protesters was definitely diminished. Maidan’s medics cite at least 30 killed.
One gets an impression that President Yanukovich was certain that by morning the resistance would be crushed, and so arranged for the Opposition leaders to meet with him at 11 A.M. on February, 19. As the negotiations did not take place, we can conclude that the government’s plan had failed. During the unsuccessful operation to clear off the Maidan, the citizens of several western regions occupied administrative buildings and chased away the police. At the moment the police, as an institution, do not exist in L’viv. According to the SBU, protesters have captured 1500 firearms. In less than 24 hours, the central government lost control over a section of the country. Right now, the only solution may be the stepping down of the President, however, that would mean that he, his family, and their multiple acolytes and dependents, which form a rather large group in the ruling government, would lose their source of profit. It is likely that they will not accept this.
In the event of Yanukovich’s victory, he will become a ruler for life, and the rest will be doomed to a life in which they face poverty, corruption, and the abolition of their rights and freedoms. Rebellious regions are now experiencing massive restorations of “the constitutional order.” It is not improbable that the suppression of such “terroristic groups” in Galicia will have the character of ethnic cleansing. Mad Orthodox radicals from the Party of Regions have, for a long time, seen the conservative Greco-Catholics as the aids of “Eurosodom.” Such an “antiterrorist” operation would be carried out with the assistance of the army, as the Minister of Defense, Lebedev, has already announced.
Today, Ukraine experiences a tragedy, but the real horror will start when the government breaks down the opposition and “stabilizes” the situation. Signs of the preparation of a mass-cleansing operation became noticeable as far back as early February, when criminal cases were opened against the Maidan self-defense divisions as illegal military formations. According to Article 260 of the Criminal Codex, members of such divisions may face imprisonment for 2 to 15 years. This means that the government was planning to put more than 10 thousand citizens behind bars. In the regions, as well as in the capital, special “death divisions” are acting as a supplement to the usual police forces. For example, responsibility for burning alive a Maidan activist from Zaporozhye was claimed by such a “death division,” calling itself “Sebastopol Ghosts.” They announced that they are ready to subject Maidan participants in the East to similar treatment.
In the event of the Opposition’s victory life would be far from perfect as well. Although fascists form the minority of the protesters, they are quite active and are not the sharpest tools in the shed. A few days of truce in mid-February lead to conflicts between the rightist groups, resulting in several pointless and violent confrontations, as well as attacks on ideological ‘heretics.’ Besides the fascists, old and experienced Oppositionists will also attempt to seize power. Many of them already have some experience with working in government and they are no strangers to corruption, favoritism, and the use of budget funds for personal purposes.
The “concessions” that the Opposition is demanding in Parliament right now are pitiful. Even the Constitution of 2004, that they are trying to restore, gives too much power to the President (control over the riot police and special forces is one example), and the proportional electoral system, with closed listings, hands parliament over to the control of a group of dictator-like leaders, who can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Together with the President they will rule without obstructions.
Their second demand – the appointment of a Cabinet of Ministers composed of Opposition leaders – is altogether shameful. Are people risking their health, freedom, and life for the sake of someone becoming a prime-minister, and someone-else getting an opportunity to control the flow of corrupt-money? This is the logical outcome of preferring pathos-ridden conversations on “the nation,” and focusing on vertical structures tied to the same hated politicians, instead of developing ground-up organizations around financial and material interests. This is the main lesson that Maidan is yet to learn.
However, we will be able to apply this lesson in practice only if the current government loses the battle.
The Opposition inside and outside of the Parliament is broken into multiple hostile and competing factions. If it wins, the ensuing regime will be unstable and lacking in coherency. It will be as bourgeois and repressive as was the Party of Regions before their first show of force against the protesters in November.
The guilt for the spilled blood is partially on the EU which gladly receives money from the corrupt scumbags in Ukraine, Russia, and several African countries, while diligently neglecting to check the source of such “investments.” It is only after seeing the dead bodies of the victims of such “investors,” that it gets so very sentimental and full of humanitarian pathos.
This is not our war, but the victory of the government will mean the defeat of the workers. The victory of the Opposition also does not promise anything good. We cannot call the proletariat to sacrifice themselves for the sake of the Opposition and its interests. We think that the extent of participation in this conflict is a matter of personal choice. However, we encourage all to avoid being drafted to serve in the internal military forces controlled by Yanukovich, and to sabotage by all means available the actions of the government.
No gods, no masters, no nations, no borders!
Kiev organization AWU (Autonomous Workers Union).

Source: http://avtonomia.net/2014/02/19/zayavlenie-ast-kiev-o-situatsii-v-ukraine/

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Comments

Thanks so much for posting this and/or translating it to English. A lot of people I know are very conflicted with what is going on in Ukraine, what with the nationalist and fascist groups having such high visibility.

Because they're like... totally dominating these protests since day one. Duh! What else do you need as evidence, aside from the "sea of flags" from fascist groups, or those neonazi cripples dressing up as insurgents, all with the same bulletproof vests? These are the sons of the WW2 Nazi puppet regime, their fathers have committed racist genocides. Their Youtube and Reddit agit-prop have tons of users posting White supremacist comments.

They're also being massively funded and backed by US neocons and crypto-fascists of the German government. To the amount

That's completely orchestrated phony insurrection, signed George Soros/Zbigniew Brezinski. There will be a lot more blood and destruction, all in the name of Western democracy. This is not good.

I also appreciate the work of the Autonomous Workers Union, but their rhetoric is also dangerously naive. Calling for supporting these protests while acknowledging they are dominated by the Pravy Sektor? Hmm...

Any anarchist with a sense of strategy would rather sit down and observe (and keep reporting), and wait for the proper time to attack the winning team, if there is one. That's probably what happened in Egypt, post-Mubarak.

I forgot: "To the amount of..." 5 BILLIONS USD. They've just paid themselves a post-coup government with that sum.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article37599.htm

Still … I found the tactical developments in the streets to be fascinating. Horrible too of course! That progression from marches with skirmishes to barricades and protracted melees and finally the pigs start massacring people once it becomes obvious that "non-lethal" techniques have utterly failed against a determined mass of insurgents. That progression in the last 2 months is basically a graduate thesis on street politics and violent social ruptures for anyone who wants to understand those dynamics.

All recycled from insurgent tactics already developed elsewhere, including anarchist riot and blockades street tactics, but not limited to it. It has already been studied by intelligence agencies, hence why you have that stuff happening.
"Social rupture"? No, I don't think those fascist machomen are interested in rupturing with the old world. Rather reinforce it even mre violently, as they are doing.

But feel free to go ask the National Endowment for Democracy and the CIA to help you out in setting up an anarchist insurgency in the US. Perhaps if you make a few blood oaths with them, they'll finance you with a few billions...

And no, tactics are not strategy.

I'm the poster you're responding to and I don't see why you need that attitude.

I didn't claim any of this stuff was new but YOU seem pretty naive if you think CIA instigated coups can happen without the thousands of ordinary people who're sincerely martyring themselves right now. I also didn't claim tactics were strategy.

I do think that regardless of intentions or even politics, the dynamics of this type of populist violence against armed security forces is a very unusual progression. That weird limbo of "non-lethal" crowd control tactics, met with very brave but out-gunned resistance but greater numbers and finally, the state abandons all pretence. A lot of lessons there.

"George Soros/Zbigniew Brezinski."

Sources for this, other than fucking kurt nimmo, the watsons, alex jones, or glenn beck?

Two men rule us all because human rituals unlock superhuman strengths muahahahaha.

Do people really believe this shit? Cartoon talk!

Typical knee-jerk leftist reaction against the "right-wing conspiracy nuts".
Logical fallacy ("appeal to motive") in this context: evidence comes from right-wing source, so it makes it invalid, by default.

Sighs. Alright, here you go...

National Endowment for Democracy along with the Open Society Institute (founded and led by Soros) are head-deep into funding the Ukrainian opposition. There's also the very sketchy Konrad-Adenaeur-Stiftung, tied to the Merkel regime in Germany, that is a primary actor behind the Transatlantic Partnership.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/imf-sponsored-democracy-in-the-ukraine-2/53...

On Brezinski: http://www.kyivpost.com/opinion/op-ed/brzezinski-offers-support-for-ukra...

His statement on Ukraine, from past December: http://ukrainianweek.com/News/96708

and http://www.kyivpost.com/content/ukraine/brzezinski-events-in-ukraine-his...

Brezinski, Obama and the neocons: https://moderate.wordpress.com/2007/09/15/obama-brzezinski-and-the-neoli...

The man is also remains a main eminence at the CFR, has been a hardcore anti-Russia, anti-commie political manipulator for decades -having set up the mujaheedin insurgents in the late '70s Afghanistan- and a chairman at Chase Manhattan Bank, known for its support for fascist organizations all around the world since the '30s.

As for the neocons involvement, the info is well-spread on the web, both for Victoria Nuland's speech and controversial phone conversation, and John McCain's full buddying and dealing with Pravy Sektor leaders. No, none of this stuff was made up by Alex Jones.

The infamous video: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article37599.htm

http://www.paulcraigroberts.org/2014/02/17/us-eu-paying-ukrainian-rioter...

The CIA's puppets trying to overthrow Russia's puppets?!

History sure is running out of ideas.

But srsly, thanks for the update.

I'm an American in Kiev. I arrived tonight and so I don't know much, but feel free to ask me anything.

This may totally be a troll.
Regardless, here it goes:

I've heard from left-wing (socialists and the like) journalists and bloggers that the demonstrations have adopted a certain "post-political" uprising status. This claim acknowledges that fascists are one political ideology present but that they have become even more of a minority than before, that as the demonstrations grow the nazis have not grown proportionately in influence. This analysis goes on to state that no ideology holds the uprising together and that it is becoming an honest conflict with the state but still lacks direction (which means it is not totally hopeless by any means).

I'd like to know: is this a civil war? In Lviv, demonstrators looted police armory. In Kiev, Klitchko was drowned out by chants of "revolution" just last night. What's the move forward in the eyes of the average Maiden protester? Have left wing groups or anarchists been present or have they been woefully abstaining from the conflict (therefore insuring their isolation for years to come)?

There's no average Maiden protester.

I am a troll and I am in Kiev and I am not trolling right now.

I can't answer your questions yet. Good questions and ones I came to pose, but I just don't know. Actually I do know comrades have been present and have been beaten severely by fascists for "no reason". More on that as I know more.

My first impressions is that this isn't social rupture. At least not in Kiev. The things I've read of in other cities that you mentioned are much more inspiring and rupture-y than what I've heard of in Kiev and the maidan. Physically, everything in Kiev seems too localized on the maidan to make any sense to my brain as anything but Occupy* with guns. If insurrection is social and not military then I don't think this is insurrection at least not the maidan. It is like poorly strategized warring.

Some impressions: No money in ATMs - I traded USD for local currency on the street after trying all the dried up bankomats I could find. No food on shelve but plenty of food at sites of collective self-organization. Of which there are many and are always in need of more hands I've been told. Metro being out of service is a drag and to more than the bottom line (recall Greek workers keeping metro open on days of general strike). Oh and of course the massive psychic black hole (weird feeling here. everyone feels something I don't feel [yet?] and it isn't good). Joyless.

Thanks for posting this.

No money in ATMs? No food except at sites of struggle? Sounds like a bit of a rupture to me but such qualitative analysis can not exactly capture social transformation, of course. I assume it's joylessness is related to the deaths of the last few days?

Concrete question: are the arms centralized by a group at the Maiden or does it appear to be a diverse bunch of people who are armed? Are there as many armed people present as the news seems to imply (which is: not everyone but certainly a lot at the barricades).

Come on... don't you know the meme "I am _________, ask me anything"?

I swear I'm not trolling.

I see your reply and don't have answers. My comrade host and I are heading out soon to walk and go to hospital. It is necessary to protect hospitals from police. I'll try to find out answers to your questions. I'm scared to go to maidan because of snipers but maybe I will go.

After talking more over breakfast I better understand what a horror show this situation is. There is a wide rejection of any anti-capitalist critique. Communism/socialism of any sort is vicariously connected to the president's regime in the imaginations of 'the people'. An anecdote: After being denounced by a contemporary artist from a stage at the maidan a trade unionist tent was attacked. People in it beaten, sound and generator stolen. They were there to participate and to distribute their paper.

The line in the maidan is to be strict legalist. This despite shooting police. Looting and rioting are forbidden. Very pro-business. For the representative opposition this is about seizing state power. For many activated this week after the terrible police violence, they hate the regime and are active in support infrastructure like hospitals and logistics, and they are not right wing or fascist or even regular conservative, but they think the answer is that a new regime will be better. No talk of social things or of wages or healthcare. It is a mess.

Anarchists here are not inactive but they are active in the infrastructure stuff. They do not fight because it is a fight for regime change and they don't want that. When they criticize the opposition they are 'with the regime'. But when any sort of mild left-ness is being beaten by zerg mobs it is hard to do anything explicitly anarchist. So they try to analyze the situation and do infrastructure. This seems to me to be the same mistake as the plaza movement in Spain and with us in Occupy* to an extent but I don't know everything involved so I can't judge.

Back from the walk and hospital visit.

The hospital felt great! Lots of smiles amd collective work. Still very serious but there was joy in the air along with grief and tensions.

A very gendered work division. I am a man. I've never appreciated the American anarchist approach to gender more than today. Very bad seeing only women do caring work and almost exclusively men carrying clubs and wearing helmets and masks blockading. Some bad ass young women carryied clubs in hands with painted nails and stylish clothes along with the younger men. Before I saw the gendered situation inside my comrade told me they did a feminist action going and 'making sandwiches in the Fordist model of production'. I nodded but didn't understand the significance. I don't understand all the differences of this culture but the gender politics stands out as a real point of departure from what I know. We grabbed food on the way out today. We stepped around to the server-side of the table and fixed our sandwiches. There were lots of smirks from the women at the table and looks from the men around and blockading. Not totally unfriendly smirks, but not totally friendly. I asked one of them women who had offered to make me tea earlier if it was OK me making my own sandwich. She said it was fine. Weird to be making a feminist action by making a sandwich for yourself publicly. I suppose it must have been super provocative when the comrade men showed up to make sandwiches for everyone. Context, context, context.

ATMs have money where I was today. We saw a bank transport car drive around. A grocery had lots of food.

Ministry of education is occupied by people including comrades. We may go there tonight and see what is going on now that an "agreement" has been brokered between "opposition leaders" and the regime. I have a feeling the lack of true generalization of conflict and the use of firearms has made the myth of "opposition leaders" more of a reality on the ground just as the brokering by EU and USA has made it true in the political realm.

Things that happened on Maidan this evening (YESTERDAY)

--city hall is overwhelmed with people (including several clergymen) who are bringing food and medical supplies.

--the middle-aged woman who collected our food donations from us gave us a large package filled with packets of black pepper and allspice. She said(barked really) "Devushka! When you go around this way, you will see a group of men preparing molotov cocktails. You must take this to them."

--the same woman then tried to give one of the self defense volunteers (a man in full flack jacket and helmet, weapons and body armor) one of the mandarins we had brought. He had a sandwich in one hand and a soda in the other. "you need vitamin C!" she said. He said "naw, both my hands are full, I don't want it." The woman huffed at him in offense and grabbed the collar of his sweatshirt. he was in a hoodie and the hood was up. She stuffed an orange violently into his hood until it sat securely in his collar. "You must eat it! You need your health!" The self defense volunteer laughed and pulled away like he was a child being tickled.

--People from all over Kyiv in all kinds of cars (Kia, Jeep, Lexus, Daiwoo) are driving up to the barricades to deliver piles and piles of tires to add to the fire. Mostly women are carrying the tires towards the front.

--Cobble stones are being ripped up all across Independence square and broken into smaller pieces so that they can be thrown. Women in heels and fur coats can be seen digging up the stones. Even a man i a wheel chair with no legs was there breaking stones with an ax.

--As we approached the fire line, a man in his 60s stood up from his chair. It was sitting against the barricade. He offered for me to stand on his chair so that i could take pictures over the wall. I hesitated. My feet were muddy. "May I?" I asked. "You need to," he said. He and another woman, without asking, just doing, hoisted me up to the top of the barricade and silently held me steady for several minutes while I documented the area. He then helped me climb down and turned to my friends saying, "Who's next?"

--Police are still using water canons to try to "put out the fires". Mostly they are turning the square into a swamp.

--Artists are singing classical Ukrainian music on stage. Their voices are hypnotizing and beautiful.

--The crowds are immense. Everyone is kind and smiling, cooperating together and working hard. One of my friends was even recruited to help carry a huge piece of sheet metal over to the barricade to reinforce it while we were there. People are kind and helpful and lovely. Even the guards manning the gates yell over their megaphones not to order people around, but to thank them for being so kind and keeping to the right and making way for each other.

How can these people be radicals? They want you to be fed and be safe. They want everyone to come join them, because there is more than enough tea to go around, and the band is about to start.

from across the ocean, it seems that for local anarchists not to participate in this is madness. challenge the fascists and the national rhetoric more generally, using the common ground of opposition to the state and the existing order.

Global Anarchy TM

Brought to you by Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Monsanto, Chase, etc. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2y0y-JUsPTU

If you don't accept democracy, democracy will come to you! Duck and cover.

Anarchists and Fascists united in a CIA coup against a mild centrist corrupt government. Woohoo!! Maidan is a front group for extreme-rightists calling for "National Revolution." Stormfront and (A) News praise the protests!

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