Join international solidarity campaign for Alexander Kolchenko

  • Posted on: 10 March 2015
  • By: Anonymous (not verified)
Alexandr Kolchenko

Alexander Kolchenko is a Crimean anarchist, social activist and antifascist who is held in captivity by the Russian authorities. Along with other Crimean activists, he has been kidnapped by the Russian FSB (ex-KGB) and is now detained as a political hostage in Lefortovo jail in Moscow. He is charged with committing “acts of terrorism” and “belonging to a terrorist community”.

Why Alexander Kolchenko is in the jail?

Alexander, who has undeniably proved his antifascist stance over many years, is facing preposterous accusations of belonging to “Right Sector”, a radical Ukrainian right-wing organization, whose real role in Ukrainian events is blown out of proportion by Russian official propaganda.

In modern Russia any activist — left-wing, anarchist or liberal — can be slandered as a member or sympathizer of “Right Sector”. This situation is comparable to the hunt for nonexistent “Trotskyists” under Stalin, or the McCarthy witch-hunt for communists. Putin’s authoritarian and nationalist regime, which uses in its propaganda everything from religious prejudices and conspiracy theories to outright racism, shamelessly steals “antifascist” rhetoric. And yet anyone who is
considered bothersome is called a “fascist”, even if he/she stands on
the opposite side of the political spectrum.

The case against antifascist Alexander Kolchenko and civil activist and film director Oleg Sentsov (investigators enrolled them into the same “terrorist” group) is political. It is meant to intimidate inhabitants of Crimea and prevent any resistance on the peninsula. The most authoritarian of methods are now used in annexed Crimea to repress all discontent. Many people were obliged to leave Crimea because their life and freedom were threatened: lawyers, left-wing activists, students and trade union activists, anarchists, antifascists and Crimean Tatar
activists who have fallen victims of ethnic discrimination.

What threats does Alexander Kolchenko face?

A terrible prison sentence of up to 20 years threatens Alexander Kolchenko for a non-existent “terrorist attack” in which he was not involved. Kolchenko and other Ukrainian political prisoners are detained only in order to demoralize opposition by show trials. Their freedom is directly linked to the stability of the Putin regime: if we can shake the confidence of Putin in his impunity, the prisoners will be set free. There is no hope that Kolchenko, Sentsov and others would be judged by
the law. Their arrest was unlawful, the charges against them are
far-fetched. It's not a mistake, the regime knows what it's doing.

How can you help Alexander Kolchenko?

We're asking international left-wing and libertarian forces for help. You can organize and lead actions of protest and solidarity, write letters to Kolchenko, send donations for lawyers and food parcels, help his family. It is also important to spread information about his case. Most of all, we need to dissociate ourselves from any forces that support aggressive expansion of Russian nationalism, even if they cover it up with “leftist” and “anti-imperialist” rhetoric. Putin's regime is
doing just fine without your sympathy, better save it for those who have
become its victims.

When to start?

You can start right now by helping us to spread this text, translating it into other languages and sending it to comrades. We also strongly encourage you to organize demonstrations in support of Alexander Kolchenko and other political prisoners jailed in Russia from April 1 to 7, 2015. On April 11 and 16 Sentsov’s and Kolchenko’s custodies end, respectively. In the first half of April Lefortovo District Court of Moscow will decide again whether they should await judgment in jail or have the right to exit under the injunction not to leave or under home
arrest. Only strong and massive pressure on the Putin regime, protests
around the world would give a chance to set our comrades free. We demand
their immediate discharge and the end of their prosecution.

More information below

Interview with Alexander Kolchenko

Repressions against Crimean activists: political context

Multilingual Facebook group

Contact us:

German version

French version

Italian version

Ukrainian version

Russian version



... to which western NGO does he belong?

"Most of all, we need to dissociate ourselves from any forces that support aggressive expansion of Russian nationalism, even if they cover it up with “leftist” and “anti-imperialist” rhetoric."

Sooooo... you're expecting Western Leftists and libertarians to further support the New Cold War official NATO rhetoric, as well as the Kiev Neonazis rhetoric? This is getting very problematic.

I've seen French "antifa" lately who refused to support (by not spreading any news about) those commie Spanish guys who've been arrested by the current right-wing extremist regime in Spain over their support to Novorossya, against the OVERTLY Neonazi battallions. Which means that they basically ditched their very own ideological comrades, in support of a Neo-fascist regime's "resistance" against what is presented as Russian imperialism. In support of battalions staffed with even well-known Neonazis from Western countries.

That's fucking insane.

It's funny but I never seen Avtonom decry all the hateful calls for the killing of Russians by the Euromaidan government and its troops, that WAS followed in the Spring of last year by a military assault on Donetsk region, as well as the obvious Neonazi imagery, posture, politics and their violence on the left-wing Ukrainian opposition.

More and more you are exposing yourselves as fakesters, who could very well be on the payroll of George Soros/American NGOs.

"Sooooo... you're expecting Western Leftists and libertarians to further support the New Cold War official NATO rhetoric, as well as the Kiev Neonazis rhetoric?"

No, they expect anarchists in whatever country to oppose all nation-states and their wars. It's pretty basic shit. And Stalinists might be your ideological comrades, but they aren't mine. Unless you're trolling in which case, ehhh, at least 6/10.

No... this text really is focused SOLELY on Putin and its "imperialism" over Ukraine and especially Crimea, which is a fucking farce set up by the Ukrainian ultra-nationalist themselves (and the CIA, most probably)). I still fail to see any broad anti-State or anticapitalist analysis in there.

This text is solely focused on Russia because it's written by Russian anarchists about a comrade kidnapped by the Russian state. Opposing what "your" government does doesn't automatically make you a supporter of that state's enemies. There are plenty of texts here that are just focused on what the US state is doing, with no mention of ISIS - does that make the authors of those pieces ISIS supporters? If someone writes an article about the struggle in Greek prisons, and doesn't explicitly condemn the German state, are they an apologist for Merkel? NWBTCW, m8.

Of course not. But the "automatically" in contexts of imperialism can be replaced by "likely" or at least "possibly". In the case of Greece, it's obvious that CCF and other prisoners aren't still held in jail because they CIA tools or whatever, as many of them DID attack foreign interests in the country and capitalists as well.

Though there's been highly dubious "autonomous" people in Ukraine who turned out to just be Neonazis (some groups actually use the "autonomous" rhetoric in their names), and also some apparent anarchist youngsters who didn't mind protesting along hordes of neonazis, not against them, as well as some "antifa" were reported to have joined the Azov battalion, whose logo was a wolfsangel. There's even those same crypto-fascists in Western European countries, even some rumored "antifa", and that's why we need to take a critical distance these days, or at least critical solidarity. There appears to have been a major fuck up in East Europe around the issue of neonazism just like over the issue of Western imperialism and Avtonom did nothing to counter it, actually contributed to it. And now they want MORE of this shit, and the quote in the first comment makes it quite clear.

Many western anarchists have been caught twice at supporting the wrong "comrades" in Ukraine and Russia lately (namely with the "Ukrainian Revolution" and with Pussy Riot), and there's been many poor or deceitful analysis posted on Avtonom that heavily contributed to fool people in downplaying the dominance of Neonazis/fascists and US interests in Euromaidan, and in the following conflict in Ukraine. That's a problem.

Also, the BND was proven to have used phony insurgents in Kosovo to attack imperialist interests. (...just imagine the drama if some anarchoid dupes would have picked up on this and created a solidarity campaign for these phonies)

There's so much smoke and mirrors in the disputed territories East Europe, Middle East, North Africa and some of Latin America that it's just idiotic to take things at face value.

Lemme get you in touch with Anderson Cooper right away, and probably John McCain and Victoria Nuland but understand they're busy people at the moment, though they also are hardcore against "Russian imperialism" and especially Evil Dictator Putin an they never let down anti-Russia resisters, even when they're openly neonazis (especially when they are!).

Also, ever heard of the New America Foundation and the National Endowment for Democracy? They might provide you with a few big bucks if you keep playing your cards right. Also contact Ukraine's Ministry of Finance to facilitate, as it's now run by an ex-US State Department official who just switched citizenship for this *golden* new job.

All I hear in these comments is very confused leftists. The only sensible anarchist position is a pox on all their houses. The only people that should be supported in this conflict, if they're even present in any meaningful way, are those who aren't fighting for statist ends. Why is this so confusing? The enemy of your enemy isn't necessarily your friend, which should be absurdly obvious when it comes to US-Soviet proxy wars.

Yes, this ^^^. I really hope those other commenters are just one poster. Of all the various kinds of stupidness that infest this site, I never thought to see people going for straight-up "anti-imperialist" leftism.

"I really hope those other commenters are just one poster" Go ask your buddies at the NSA... they should know that!

The last US-Soviet proxy war was in the '80s, and as far as I know anarchists were completely out of the picture, so I don't know what you're talking about. Nobody here has promoted Putin as a good guy and that Russia's prisons are cooler than the US prison hell. And you should know that Putin's regime is far more popular among conservatives in the West than the anti-imperialist Leftists. For a reason.

Nonsene, they are totally engaging in proxy warfare, with the Crimea "annexation" (*cough*), unmarked soldiers, providing weapons to Donetsk, that aid convoy that they "lost track of" (lol), all well-documented.

Speaking of which, you seem to be playing into that role pretty well. That whole "The Maidan revolution was funded by the US and consisted solely of fascists" narrative comes straight from the Putinista's and their favourite state sponsored newspaper. It makes me wonder, sometimes...

It's not a narrative, it's a fact. But because "Putin propaganda media" like RT covers it and CNN doesn't, you just decided to ban the historical and recent facts from your washed brain. Oh... and RT also talks about the deadly water contamination by Freedom Industries and how people protested it, but since that, too, was shunned by Western controlled media it was also lies straight out of Putin's office (gosh that guy must be sooo busy).

Breaking news: Capitalist media from all over the world found to be twisting the facts, at least sometimes.

I tend to agree with you. However I would side with Russia on the basis of a few things:

* Russia is highly anti-GMO and pro conservation efforts.
* Putin's Russia respects the old ways in terms of conservative and family values. They
* It is very difficult to tell much about anyone reliably through the television/print. However to me Putin seems like basically a good man who does what he believes is right for Russia and certainly is not in the pocket of corporations like the US.

Nothing is as bad as the US, nothing. Radioactively poisoning places in Iraq that's inducing cancer in children? Come on.

Writers of this type of news should take a completely neutral stance should be taken to these kinds of issues by the Articles like this or for example acutely feminist articles insult me and turn me away from anarchoprimitivism movements. These silly points of view are nonsensical in terms of anarchoprimitivism.

Writing something like this as some kind of fact that we all agree on is going to be a self-fulfilling prophecy - people who don't agree with it are going to turn away and believe this place isn't for them. Really, stupid to use labels like "political prisoner" as if they were fact.

oops, I made a bit of a mess of that post and can't edit it. Hope it's not too offputting.

You're totally correct that the article above bluntly fails at being politically neutral, as it's overtly still defending the same Western BS propaganda (that now is becoming mostly US/UK-based as more Western politicians have realized the insanity of supporting neonazis for "freedum" and above all, the crazy war-mongering that only helps at further militarizing East Europe on both sides).

As I wrote before, some Russian anarchists/radicals should think harder and come up with a truly radical analysis of the current, explosive geopolitical mess, that IS on its way to an apocalyptic world war.

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