The Anarchical Optical and the Role of Anarchics in the World War

from A-Infos
(en) Grece, zero geographic #25
by Panagiotis Xirouhakis

"Bring the rifles you built into the streets and the barricades. Let all the forces of the proletariat rise and arm them. Put an end, with the power of weapons, on the systematic destruction of the human race. Proletarians! Raise your axes now, your axes, your barricades, the social revolution! Proletarian soldiers, despair! If you have to fight, do it against those who oppress you! Your enemy is not on the so-called borders, but here. Protestant women, rebel! Prevent the departure of your loved ones! Let it be you, the factory worker and the earth, the conscious and the powerful, let it be you who will let down the tools and you will cry: Enough! No more!



The first world war was the result of the execution of the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire Francis Ferdinand in Sarajevo by the young Bosnian Serb Garchil Prinsip, a member of the Mlada Bosna organization (New Bosnia) . Bosnia and Herzegovina was officially annexed to the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1908, while 50% of its population was Bosnian Serbs (Howard, 2006). But the irresponsible feeling of liberation from Austro-Hungariania and the union with Serbia was very strong (Ferguson, 2006), and the successor would pay it with his life, as it was executed by an organization, New Bosnia, which aimed to overthrow the Austro-Hungarian zy

After the declaration of war in Austria by Austria, developments were rapid (Hauard, 2006). One great force declared war on the other, leading mankind to a major world war. In this war, eventually named World War I, the camps were two. On the one hand, the Entente (which consisted of the British Empire, Russia, France and later the United States, Romania, Italy and Greece) and the central forces (Germany, Austro-Hungary, Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire) The causes of the war were of course not the possible involvement of Serbia in the execution of the successor (as Austro-Hungarian invoked to declare the war in Serbia) but the imperialist antagonisms.

The war has evolved into a real massacre as, due to mass industrial production and technology (Howard, 2006), older military tactics (cavalry use, bayonet raids, etc.) were overtaken, and the new technological arsenal was introduced into the scene: the use of trains for mass movements army, bulk throwing of artillery, chemical gases, guns, airplanes, tanks, etc.

In all major conflicts, ideology plays an important role. The same is true in the case of the First World War where various competing ideological trends (communism, nationalism, etc.) collided with each other. At that time, anarchism was also a very powerful and massive movement that in some countries even overshadowed the Marxist and other left-wing movements. Such a dynamic movement could not have affected the war-related developments and especially the revolutionary processes that this war caused.

In the first part we will look at the relationship between anarchist "terrorism" and the first world war. In the second part we will present the anarchists who supported the war and we will emphasize the contradiction of this attitude. In the third part, the anti-war action of the anarchists will be presented, as well as their participation in revolutions both during the war and in those that followed its end. In the latter part, an attempt will be made to explain the attitude of anarchists during the war but also in the years that followed, and an attempt will be made to assess the role of the anarchist movement of those times.

Finally, we will show that the majority of the anarchists were distinguished for their anti-war and revolutionary attitude. In the years of the war and in the years that followed (1918-1922), they participated in the great uprisings and revolutions.


First we clarify that the notion of terrorism is ideologically charged. For anarchists, states are terrorists. On the contrary, power considers any form of revolutionary movement (national liberation, communist, anarchist, etc.) that assumes the violence against it as terrorist. Things become even more confused as yesterday's terrorists can be seen after a victorious revolution as heroes from the newly established state and be imposed internationally for these beliefs. Some cases, however, remain controversial forever. For example, in the international bourgeoisie, even today, there is talk of the assassination of the successor by the terrorist Gavrilo Principe, with the exception of today's Serbia, who is considered a national hero.

After this parenthesis, we can present the relationship of anarchism to what the bourgeoisie of the time called terrorism. In any case in the late 19th century. and in the early 20th century. the anarchist-related violent movements can be distinguished in Russian zeroing and the blows associated with "Propaganda through the Act" (Laqueur, 1977). The Russian zenith as a reversal movement embraced "terrorism" as a means of achieving the purposes of the revolution. Even though it is not identical to anarchism as a movement, it has coalesced with and interfered with it. I would point out that Netsayev was an important Russian nilist, who at some point affected Bakunin.

Of all the nihilist movements, the most important was Narodnaya Voia (Tzol, 1975) who killed several Russian highs. In September 1879, Revolutionary People's Court of Narodnaya Voia condemned Tsar Alexander II to death. Eventually and after two unsuccessful attempts, success came in March 1881. Continues of the Russian Zionists were two decades later the Social Revolutionaries.

A new wave of "terrorism" erupted (mainly from anarchists and social revolutionaries) after the Bolsheviks seized power in November 1917 during the First World War. In part, they targeted the Bolsheviks (Lenin was injured in such an attack) and against German diplomats and soldiers, in order to undermine the peace talks between Germany and Russia.

The anarchist "Propaganda through Operation" in the 1990s was the culmination of anarchist violent action (mainly with bombings, executions and robberies) in Europe, and had a large share of the anarchist movement. Anarchists of this trend believed that by running rulers they brought the masses closer to the revolution. In their view, it was very important for the masses to see that even the elders could "kneel". Also the bombs of the 1880s and 1890s were the desperate reaction to the disappointment that came with the bloody crush of the Commune and the suppression of the First International. Between the last years of the 1970s. and the 1930s spread the "Propaganda through the Act" throughout the world. The most important executions of the leaders (out of several of those years that were made and attributed to the anarchists) are the following: In 1894 the French President Karnos was killed, in 1897 the Spanish Prime Minister Antonio Canovas, the Emperor of Elizabeth in 1898 and the Italian King Umberto in 1900 (Laqueur, 1977). In 1912 King George I was killed by anarchist Schina. In Spain, political violence was particularly flourishing as it became part of the trade union (and anarcho-syndicalist) struggles. For example, a group set up, among others, by Duroutti (later the leading figure of the CNT-FAI) killed the Bishop of Zaragoza. In US the US president was killed, while political executions from anarchists also took place in Argentina.

Some analysts argue that the political murders we mentioned did not have a significant effect but only increased repression. However, the execution of the successor that day in Sarajevo, even though it was the cause and not the real cause of such a blood-warned war, triggered sweeping and rapid developments.



The role of the left in the First World War was not consistent with the anti-militaristic spirit that pre-warped it. In Germany, for example, most members of the Social Democratic Party (with the more obvious exception of the anti-militarist Karl Liebknecht) voted in favor of the war budget and thus advocated their country's war effort (Harman, 1997). In Russia, Marxist Plekhanov set himself unreservedly on the side of the Tsar. In Britain, the Labor Party supported the war effort (Ferguson, 2006). Not only was the left the majority in favor of the war. In Britain, most prominent feminists stood with the Entente to be defeated, as flamboyant Germany argued, although some important feminists argued against the war. In the field of spiritual people, the same situation prevailed. Even the famous science fiction writer and humanist X. Gi. Wells settled with the Entente. On the contrary, the Bolshevik party was against the war as it believed that the war was the product of capitalism, and there were no good or evil but only imperialist interests.

Anarchists generally followed an anti-war attitude, as we will see below, with some shaky exceptions. More important was the support provided by the famous and very popular anarchist of that time Kropotkin on the Russian side. Kropotkin was a Russian prince and recognized geographer and environmentalist, as well as one of the founders of anarchist communism. Together with other anarchists he signed the "Manifesto of the Sixteen" (Avrich, 2005). In opposition to the majority of the anarchists who were against the war (Woodcock, 1990), Kropotkin and other anarchists (mainly anarcho-communists and anarcho-syndicalists) who had similar views supported socialist La Bataille in 1916 (where the manifesto was first published) allies had to defend themselves in Germany's aggression.

It is important to understand that Kropotkin (Jol, 1975) was distinguished at a cultural level by a "anti-German" attitude as did other Russian revolutionaries (such as anarchist Bakunin, Bakunin's anti-Germanism was proverbial). In general, Bakunin blamed German civilization for excessive militarism. Perhaps one of the causes of Bakunin's views on German culture is to be traced back to the German Marx (Jol, 1975). In general, Kropotkin believed that Germany was a country where militarism and expansionism dominated culturally (Nettlau, 1996). If eventually Germany prevailed in the world's chessboard of imperialism, its totalitarianism would be channeled everywhere, increasingly removing the idea of an anarchist and social revolution.

The majority of the anarchists felt that Kropotkin betrayed the anarchist beliefs. The latter thus received an angry critique (Avrich 2005). Besides, in February 1916 (before the "Manifesto of the Sixteen") an anti-war manifesto was published by eminent anarchists (Rudolf Rooker, Emma Goldman, Alexander Bergman, etc.). Kropotkin, however, went against the dominant anti-war stance of the anarchists and went along with others in the publication of the "Manifesto of the Sixteen." Then Malatesta (among many others) attacked the protest of Kropotkin (Nettlau, 1996). Other anarchists accused Kropotkin of chauvinism and "anarchopatriotism" (Avrich 2005). Finally, the Bolsheviks accused Kropotkin and the group of betraying the revolution. Already in 1915 (before the 16 Manifesto) in "

A big issue was whether Kropotkin was eventually a crypto-fascist. This was supported by many political enemies at that time, such as the Bolsheviks. The truth is that this trend is especially strange if one compares it with Bakunin's attitude of life, a man who has played an important role in the formation of anarchism. Bakunin, though in the early years of his revolutionary action, was a supporter of the Slavic Revolution, eventually reversing many of his views.

The truth is that Bakunin, shaping his ideological identity (and partly the anarchism of which he is now regarded as a spiritual father), eventually became an internationalist. For Bakunin, the social and class revolution was a priority, and he was envisioning a humanity based on anarchist federalism. But even in the anarchist phase of his life, the patriotic uprisings (Bakunin, 2000) that had taken place at different times in the world did not leave him indifferent. He then showed interest in national liberation issues but trying to turn them into the class and internationalist direction.

A patriotic rebellion, therefore, did not tell him anything unless he approached the realization of anarchy (Bakunin, 2007). Why Bakunin's purpose was the ultimate co-existence of all peoples in an extreme society. So it was not the creation of a new nation-state through a national revolution and he was struggling in the opposite direction.

Indeed, he believed (as we will see in more detail) that a patriotic rebellion (which he hoped to have evolved) was possible against the Prussians when the latter invaded France in 1870 and fought in this direction by participating in the failed rebellion of Lyon . Ultimately, Bakunin's political belief was correct, at least in the case of Paris where the Parisian people actually revolted in 1871. The fruit of this insurrection was the Paris Commune of 1871 (to which Bakunin was unable to take part) who was drowned in the blood Nettlau, 1996).

Generally speaking, Bakunin was not a chauvinist but the opposite. An important fact is that in the anarchist phase of his life he did not support any of the major state entities in the intra-imperialist conflicts of his time (Bakunin, 2007). He opposed Prussia during the French-French War (1870-1871), but it did so after Napoleon's collapse and when the Prussians had invaded France. Bakunin's ultimate goal was to turn an imperialist conflict into a class rebellion. "True patriotism is essentially international ... The boundaries of the proletarian homeland were broadened to a degree that now includes the proletariat of the whole world" (Bakunin, 2007, p. 104).

On the contrary, Kropotkin gave his support (indirectly) to Tsar. Ultimately, the fear of Bakunin and Kropotkin against German totalitarianism would be justified by the rise of Nazism in power. What would not be justified (especially in the eyes of the anarchists who felt betrayed) is the support of Kropotkin on the Russian side in a war that killed millions of poor Russians and led to the Russian revolution and the execution of the last Russian tsar.

It should be stressed that the opposition to this war was not a harmless act. People who resisted many times were persecuted or imprisoned (Ferguson, 2006), while many lost their lives. Indicatively, I mention Ben Russell, who paid his anti-war attitude with imprisonment. Thus many anarchists paid their choices with imprisonment and persecution (Proletocultur, 2011).


Some anarchists favored or fought in the 1st. war because they saw the vindication of their irredentist views. The young Bosnians were a revolutionary move before the First World War. It did not have clear political goals, but its members supported panayugoslavism and other pervasiveness (Ferguson, 2006). Today, other sources are referred to as nationalists and others as anarchists. In fact they had influences from both nationalist and anarchist theorists (Pavlowitch, 2002).

But let's take things from the beginning. The period from the mid-19th c. until the beginning of the 20th century, when anarchism emerged as an important revolutionary stream, and an ideological foundation was formed, many anarchists were perpetuated by anti-authoritarian ideas and fought in various patriotic uprisings against imperial armies (Tzol, 1975). Also important was the influence of Bakunin, which aimed at transforming the patriotic revolutions into class (Bakunin, 2000) wars. Bakunin in his anarchist life supported a form of proletarian patriotism aimed at to create a new nation-state, but to realize the classless and extreme society.

At this point it is good to remember that the concept of patriotism has changed meaning over time. Nowadays it usually means different things for people with different ideologies. The notion of patriotism is subjective and often identifies with nationalism. And in Bakunin's years, patriotism had begun to mean different things about the various competing movements. Thus, the concept given to him by Bakunin is also subjective and not necessarily acceptable by the majority (both then and now). In any case, Bakunin, as we have already argued, was not a chauvinist and was opposed to nationalism (Bakunin, 2007). The same can be said of the majority of the anarchists who fought on various revolutionary fronts.

Thus, the contribution of anarchists who fought in various revolutions against empires in the late 19th century should not be overlooked. Amilcarhe Tsipriani is such an anarchist case[2]. Tsiprianis even acted in Greece. In 1862, during the anti-ethnical uprising, he was in Athens, pursued by the Austrian police. Tsiprianis participated in the events of 1862 from the first moment. Indeed, in the area of Kavikaray, he created with other barricades where for the first time in the "Greek" area waved the red flag. He was then arrested and deported. In 1868 he participated in Crete during the rebellion against the Turkish authorities.

In 1897 he returned to Greece, taking part as a volunteer in the Greek-Turkish war along with other Italian anarchists. Indeed, in the battle of Domokos, a group of anarchists also participated. Also in the same year, some Italian anarchists fought in the rebellion of Crete, which was preceded (and was the cause) of the Greek-Turkish war. Anarchist rebels2, mostly Italians, fought as volunteers in Domokos and Crete, because they believed that there was a popular uprising and not a national conflict organized by a competitive nation.

Bulgaria was the country where the anarchists actively activated the national liberation struggles (Proletcult, 2011). A classic case was the anarchist Boeff, who today appears as a national hero of the Bulgarians (he died in the 1876 uprising against the Ottoman authorities), but his beliefs were anti-nationalist and abortive. Anarchists will also be actively involved in the revolts in the Macedonian area (Dhimon of the Printing House, 2001), which originally expressed social demands rather than the organized conflict of state-driven nationalisms. Many anarchists (Proletcult, 2011) will take part in Ilinden's failed rebellion. For a month in Thrace, during this uprising, the rebels tried to implement libertarian communism.

Finally, in Bulgaria, anarchists resist the country's entry into the First World War (Proletcult, 2011). Power will answer hard. Anarchists will be imprisoned for their opposition to the war. But in the course of the war, anarchists attack armies of symbols of power and wealth.

Generally, however, some anarchists obviously crossed the dividing line that separates revolutionary-proletarian patriotism and passed into chauvinism. An example is the Bulgarian anarchists who fought the Bulgarian army during the Balkan wars against the majority of Bulgarian anarchists who had anti-war views (Prolektul, 2011), but also the Italian futurists. However, as far as the organization that "fired" into the First World War, the contradictory of the case is that the Young Bosnians, an organization partially influenced by Bakunin, received assistance from the Black Hand by an organization created by the Serbian Army (Ferguson, 2006) .

The artistic-political movement of futurism (Botsola and Tisdale, 1984) also had contradictory and strange views on the present day. As a mixture of nationalism, anarchism and Nyceism, this important movement for the art took place from the outset in favor of Italy's entry into the war, even organizing artistic happenings to propagate the war. It should be noted here that in Italy there was a strong irredentist at that time, as it was believed that Italian integration was not complete and that many Italians lived under Austro-Hungarian yoke. With the outbreak of war, the Futurists ranked in the army faithful to their ideas, resulting in many losing their lives (Botsola and Tisdale, 1984).


"The revolution is nothing but war (just as war is the continuation of politics by other means)"

(Ehrman Esse in Coker, p. 11)

Anarchism played an important role in revolutions associated with the First World War in both direct and indirect ways. Thus we can say that anarchism as an ideology influenced to a certain extent Marxist revolutionary Lenin and consequently the Bolsheviks. The latter were very important for the success of the Russian Revolution, a historic event that triggered the revolution in the rest of Europe. Apart from their indirect influence, the anarchists actively participated in the revolutionary activities of these years (1914-1922).

"Letters to a Frenchman in the Present Crisis" (1870) is one of Bakunin's most important writings, as it is an essential contribution to the theory and practice of the revolution. Written during the tumultuous period of the Franco-Prussian War, when France was now defeating the defeat, the Napoleonic III government had collapsed and the Powers were at the gates of Paris. On this occasion Bakunin developed the idea of turning the wars between the imperialist states into civil wars for the Social Revolution[3].

In "Letters to a Frenchman in the Present Crisis", Bakunin called on the people (farmers and workers) to rise up to defy the invading army. It also called for the creation of the Communists who would abolish the French state and, at the same time, defend this new class society from the defeats of the French state (Bakunin was in favor of the civil war if it served the purpose of the social revolution). A little later the Parisians will rebel to protect Paris from the Prussians and the Paris Commune (1871) in which Bakunin was unable to take part and which eventually drowned in the blood of the French state itself. However, this rebellion was a vindication for Bakunin who believed that the popular uprising in that circumstance was possible (Nettlau, 1996).

But beyond the Paris Commune, this ideological tactic (that revolutionaries should have as a direct priority and the pursuit of a generalized and violent revolution during a period of intra-imperialist war) will find its ultimate vindication during the first world. war. Those years, devotees of this ideological positioning, (except the anarchists) and the Marxist Bolsheviks played a very important role in the October Revolution. In particular, Lenin worked systematically both theoretically and practically in this direction (Appignanesi, 1977). To point out here that the anti-war line of the Bolsheviks was called de-fetishism. According to the latter, the rebels should try to defeat their country in order to provoke a revolution there.

On the contrary, Marx and Engels believed that it was best to win the most progressive force (the one with more developed urban consciousness), because this historical development is a positive consequence for the working class of both the winning and defeated countries Draper, 1953/54). In this sense, their disdain for their tsarism and their conviction that it is good to be defeated in the battlefields also comes from. On the other hand, they believed that in cases of a defeat it could cause revolutionary processes in the state that would suffer it (Draper, 1953/54), but Bakunin was the one who consistently worked out a program to try to turn the war into a civil war.

It is of course possible that Lenin was influenced by the events of the Paris Commune and not directly by Bakunin's ideological position. Even so, however, the Paris Commune was more of the work of the Blank Communists and the Anarchists (the latter of course had already exerted a great theoretical effect outside Proudhon and Bakunin) and not so much of the Marxists. It is therefore quite possible that the anarchists exercised (at least) indirect influence on Lenin, who was in great appreciation of the Communist rebellion. Besides, in his work "State and Revolution" (1917) he had presented the commune as a model for the future revolutionary society (Jalketsis, 2017), where the armed popular masses would revive power by taking the road of self-government (of course when the time came the Bolsheviks did).

Of course, Lenin's position on imperialist wars differs in some respects from Bakunin's views or from the practices of the Communists. Lenin sought the defeat (Appignanesi, 1977) of Tsarist Russia from Germany (so that the revolution in the now defeated Russia was easier) and believed that in the same direction the German revolutionaries had to fight and propagate (defeat of the country their). As he himself stated his theory of imperialist war was the opposite of socialist patriotism. The rebellion, always according to him, must hope for the defeat of his country, so that the civil war (Appignanesi, 1977) is easier. The Communists, as we have already said, have fought against the First Invaders (patriotic and socially motivated) but also against the French state (with class and social motivation). Bakunin also called, as we have already seen, a struggle for the ultimate goal of the social and class revolution. Nevertheless, this idea of the revolution through the imperialist wars, even if it was used by Lenin slightly modified (as "revolutionary liberation"), does not cease to appear for the first time in Bakunin's revolutionary speech. But the Marxist and Anarchist gap during those years is already large, and it may have been difficult for Lenin to admit that he was influenced by Bakunin. even though it was used by Lenin slightly modified (as "revolutionary defeatism"), it does not cease to appear for the first time in Bakunin's revolutionary speech. But the Marxist and Anarchist gap during those years is already large, and it may have been difficult for Lenin to admit that he was influenced by Bakunin. even though it was used by Lenin slightly modified (as "revolutionary defeatism"), it does not cease to appear for the first time in Bakunin's revolutionary speech. But the Marxist and Anarchist gap during those years is already large, and it may have been difficult for Lenin to admit that he was influenced by Bakunin.

Here, to point out that Lenin's left-wing political enemies like Plekhanov and Martov (Jelketsis, 2017) accused him of the "Bukunism" civil war, especially as regards his pursuit of the revolt by violent and the destruction of the old system (if Bakunin would have considered his honor if he lived to have influenced Lenin, even if he was part of it, is another matter).

Also, as I have already said, in his work "State and Revolution" (1917), Lenin had presented the commune as a model for the future revolution (Jelketsis, 2017), where he puts the armed popular masses as bodies of the revolution aimed at self-government. But the "State and Revolution" is an exception (and contradiction) in Lenin's entire theoretical work. In general, he believed in the inadequacy of revolutionary spontaneity and gave priority to the discipline of the party, the revolutionary leadership of party members, and bureaucratic centralization.

However, Lenin's relations with anarchism do not stop here. Leninism, according to the Ulam historian (1998), has some similarities with Neyjayphism. Nechayev (Jol, 1975) was a Russian zenith who had been influenced by Bakunin (of course, the latter for some time seemed to have accepted the influence of Netsayev). Netsayev absolutely believed in the achievement of the revolution through the use of any means, even of terrorism. We must emphasize that in the early years of his life Lenin accepted the influence of the Russian Nile Movement, whose member was his eldest brother (Ulam, 1998), who was even executed for his attempt to assassinate Tsar with other zeros. Also after his life, although he embraced Marxism, Netsayev's influence was not indifferent (Service, 2000).
It was also influenced by Netsayev's idea of the revolutionary who should be solely interested in the revolution and for nothing else. In Leninism, however, this idea (that the revolution is the absolute priority) will not be realized through the action of the nihilists that in its eyes seemed romantic and did not fully express the working class4. On the other hand, Lenin considered the Bolshevik party (which is the leader of the working class) as an ideal body of the revolution. Thus he adapted Netsayev's idea into his own political perception (Radzinsky, 1997). The revolutionary party had to devote itself totally to the idea of the revolution. The latter became the Bolsheviks' ultimate goal. However, the prominent Marxist Plekhanov accused the Bolsheviks of using Netsagev's tactics (Jalketsis,

The conviction of the graphs is that subsequent Marxist historiography silenced as much as these influences could have found, and at least as far as the influence of Russian zeroism, and Eric Hobsbawm (1959) were concerned. We see, however, that the anarchism of the 19th century (through Bakunin, the anarchists of the Paris Commune and Netsayev) influenced to a certain extent the ideological identity of Bolshevism (which, of course, is most strongly influenced by Marx and the general Marxist political philosophy).

However, the anarchists of those war years who were faithful to the idea of revolution, took part with zeal in the revolutionary events of the First World War (Nettlau, 1996).

At the international level, the majority of the anarchists opposed the war, such as the CNT's anarcho-syndicalists in Spain. In Russia most anarchists did not follow Kropotkin and his team in their anti-bolshevik and anti-bolshevik stance (Avrich 2005). Indeed, many anarchists have originally favored an alliance with the Bolshevik party. Such was the case of the Makovites.

Nestor Makhno's movement is an anarchist effort with a huge geopolitical influence on the events associated with the First World War and its post-revolutionary consequences (Bielas and Bielas, 2008). During the Austro-German invasion of 1918 against the Russian Revolution (which had acquired radical features since October 1917), Makhno organized an armed resistance. Then, during the Russian civil war, the Makhnovites allied with the Bolsheviks against the "White" and other "enemies of the revolution" (Tzol, 1975). The most important force of counter-revolutionaries was the "White". Though many "White" were tsarists, tsarism was not the connecting ideological link of this movement (indeed, there were "White people" who were supporters of democracy, republicans, socialists, etc.).

Eventually, Makhno's army (which even reached its top tens of thousands and relied on self-management) after crushing the Ukrainian nationalists and the White House, was betrayed by its old ally, the Red Army, and eventually defeated. Until recently, Makhno was forgotten even in Ukraine (where the Bolshevik winners had seduced him). However, Makhno's contribution to the Russian Revolution was huge (Tzol, 1975). Makhno's army was excellent at a tactical level (Tzol, 1975), achieving many victories against the enemies of the revolution. He also invented "smart weapons", such as farm horse-drawn chariots equipped with machine guns (and called tachanka). Last, for some time,

In Hungary, the small but militant Hungarian anarchist movement (Everett, 2006), co-operating with the Bolshevik Party and left-wing socialists, helped create the Budapest Commune (which ran from 21 March to 1 August 1919). On 21 March, the Hungarian Soviet Republic was declared the first after Russia. The relationship of the anarchists with the Bolshevik party in the case of Hungary despite some confrontations was good. But the party itself had a relatively anti-authoritarian character. And because in 1918 (Everett, 2006) some of the Hungarian anarchists participated in the newly established communist party of Hungary (which played a very important role in the events of the commune) and tried to turn the party into more libertarian paths.

Eventually the commune collapsed when the Romanian army on behalf of the Advent invaded Hungary and defeated the revolutionary forces. The Commune succeeded a trade union government, while on August 6 the Romanian army occupies Budapest. But things will get worse. The coup d'état of Hungarian Admiral Michel Horty (who in the coming years as a regent binds Hungary to the chariot of Nazi Germany) follows the government. Then the Hungarian nationalists, under the eyes of the Romanian occupation army, unleash the "white" terror that left behind the thousands of victims (including several anarchists).

At the beginning of the 20th century, the Italian anarchist movement flourished. In addition, by 1914, the anarchist movement was boosted by the influx of new members as a result of the struggles against the Libyan campaign and struggles to defend the working class. In Italy, the results of the intra-national struggle over the issue of war were less damaging to the anarchist movement than in other countries. But in general, the Italian left has not had such a mood as in the other countries. So Partito Socialista Italiana (PSI) has not fervently boosted the war effort as did various major socialist parties in the rest of Europe1.

The anarchist interventionists in favor of Italy's entry into the conflict were not many, and it has been argued that 1 such attempts were initiated by Nysex and hibernate anarcho-individualists. We have already seen the case of the futurists who fall in part in the category of anarcho-individualists (Botsola and Tisdale, 1984).

The conflict within the revolutionary trade union organization USI, part of which was in favor of the Italian involvement in the war, brought the organization into the hands of the anti-militaristic majority in September 1914. Also the major Volonta magazine had the strongest anti-nationalist and anti-war line and promoted the internationalist and anti-capitalist role of anarchism. Eventually the anarchist supporters of the intervention were unable to enforce themselves in the anarchist movement. On the contrary, the anti-militarist tendency of anarchism when Italy finally entered the war was manifested in the army with many deserts and other acts of disobedience. Anarchists also organized and participated in popular anti-war demonstrations.

The anarchists participated in the Turin uprising in August 1917 - where the hostility of the Italian proletariat in the war and the desire for social change skyrocketed. In the last year of war due to excessive repression, anarchist activities declined. Nevertheless, the end of the war marked a return to mass action and organization within the movement. However, the October Revolution awakened the anarchists' hopes. In general, the end of the great war found the anarchists ready for revolutionary action (Staid, 2013).

In Germany, the anarchists turned against the war. Also, the artistic group of the dancers, in contrast to the futurists (of whom artistically had been influenced enough) reacted to the war (Hans, 1983). After the war, the pro-aristocratic artistic group of "Progressives of Cologne", who were Communist advisers (Everest, 2013), emerged. But the most important events concerning anarchists were in Bavaria after the end of the war. The Bavarian Soviet republic (which lasted about five months) was part of the 1918-1919 German revolution which followed the German defeat in the First World War (Harman, 1997). Both in the German revolution and in the creation and operation of short-term democracy, anarchists played an important role.

Karen Aisen (socialist and member of the Independent Social Democratic Party of Germany (USPD)) declared Bavaria on November 8, 1918 (Harman, 1997) as a free state, as the crowd had been uprooted in the past few days. free state[5]. The capital of the new state was Munich. Although the Bolshevik Revolution was inspiration to most of Europe's rebels, Einser tried not to identify with the Bolsheviks and thus did not touch the property. Aisner was finally murdered by a far-right (Harman, 1997). Gradually, the anarchists and Communists began to gain more power, and on 6 April 1919 Soviet democracy was proclaimed, with the reigning Gustav Ladywur[18](1870-1919) as anarchist Erik Muhammad.

This soviet pro-initiation phase did not last long. Finally, on April 12, 1919, the Communist Party took control of the rebellious Soviet republic led by Eugen Leviné6. The army and the far-right Freikorps eventually entered Munich and defeated the rebels after hard fighting, while many of them fought. Also included in the soviet was Ret Marut, who during the war published the anarchist magazine Der Ziegelbrenner. After the commune defeat, Maruto left exile in Mexico to save his life. We can say that he almost disappeared from his old comrades to protect himself, and changed his name. It is none other than the famous author B. Treven (Everest, 2013).


Anarchists played a very important role in the events associated with the First World War. We have already seen that they were related to the explosion of war. A group of revolutionaries, influenced by various ideologies, including anarchism, triggered the First World War. Of course, the execution of the successor in Sarajevo was the cause and not the cause. Surely the war would break out sooner or later but it would obviously have a different shape and maybe a different course.

We also saw that most of the anarchists resisted the war, unlike the Socialists and the Social Democrats. An exception to the anti-war attitude of the anarchists were some anarchists who tried to influence the whole anarchist movement in favor of the war. Eventually they did not.

To understand this fugitive anarchist tendency, one has to look at the history of anarchy. Until the outbreak of the 1st World. all anarchists were unambiguously identified with the internationalist and anti-militaristic struggle. This is due to Bakunin's past before becoming anarchist (he was a slave nationalist) but also to some controversial movements of important anarchists (with a great influence on the then revolutionary movement) such as the participation of Proudhon in the (democratically elected) government of Napoleon III (Preposier, 2011 and Tzol, 1975). The above events had created some misunderstandings and ideological ambiguities. Notwithstanding the aforementioned anarchist philosophers, there have been internationalists and rebels,

So before the First World War some anarchists had overcome Bakunin's internationalist standards and had chauvinistic views. With the outbreak of the Great War this became more intense. The futurists (most of them because there were exceptions) in Italy are a classic case of anarchopatrians who became after fascists (Botsola and Tistandl 1984). They were certainly not the only ones. However, the fact that some anarchists in Italy easily embraced some fascist-nationalist beliefs demonstrates that before they joined the fascist party, and even then they still had anarchists, they should not have truly internationalist views. Indicative of the ideological ambiguity of the time is that even Mussolini came from a family of anarchists, while in his socialist era he liked anarchist terrorists.

Lastly, the anarchists had a very significant impact on the revolutions brought about by the war. Significant action was in the revolution of Russia, but also in the revolutions and revolts that followed the end of the war (especially in Italy, Hungary, Germany). Thus thousands of anarchists participated in these revolutions, playing an active role, while many also sacrificed their lives for the revolutionary purpose (for example, Ladotun was murdered). Indeed, Italian anarchists participated in the anti-fascist struggles of Italy in 1920-1922 (Staid, 2013). In Spain a few years later (Paz, 2006), CNT-FAI anarchists will fight against Spanish nationalists during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). For years (1917-1939), anarchists found themselves in Europe with nationalists, conservatives, extreme right and fascists. These events altered the anti-communist stance of the anarchists.

As the war and military struggle of the anarchists against fascism and nationalism was taking a dramatic turn, the ideological identity of anarchism became clearer because of some thinkers like Bergman, Goldman and Rocker. For example, I mention the example of Rocker. His book, "Nationalism and Culture," Rooker wrote it in response to nationalism that became the dominant stream at that time in Germany. Nationalism, according to Rokeer, enslaves the individual in the state (Rocker, 1998). This book has had an enormous impact on anarchists.

His general political stance identified (along with other intellectuals, of course) the anarchist movement as completely anti-nationalist and internationalist, thus clearing many misunderstandings that had been created by the life and work of Proudhon, Bakunin and Kropotkin. Whatever the influence of Rocker and other internationalist anarchists, however, the majority of the anarchists from those troubled years of the First World War had a clear stance against the war.

We have already mentioned anarcho-syndicalist CNT but the same applies to all major anti-authoritarian groups and organizations such as the American IWW. But even the most prominent anarchists turned in 1914-1918 against the war. Lautauer, Sorel, Bergman, Emma Golmann, Malatesta (Jol, 1975) are just a few of the examples of well-known and influential anarchists who said no to the war.

The anti-nationalist, anti-racist, anti-militarist and internationalist spirit within the anarchists (though during the First World War was already the most powerful) will become the dominant in the years following the end of the First World War with the result that anarchism is almost synonymous with anti-militarism and anti-vowalism.

In the Second World War, many anarchists fought anti-fascist guerrillas across Europe. These anarchists saw the Second World War as a continuation of the Spanish civil war, that is, as a continuation of the anti-fascist struggle. No matter how historically this choice (that they fought against the Axis forces) seems to have been justified, as World War II is now regarded as a fair war, at least if one is seen by his anti-Nazi party. On the contrary, the First World War seems so unfair and irrational. So the choice of the anarchist minority in favor of the war is still condemned by the anarchist movement.



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