A defensive military intervention

Image: Antonio Friedemann
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By HASMAESTRI RIVER*

Russia outside ukrânia! NATO away from Russian borders!

The capitalist restoration in China, starting in 1978, and in the territories of the USSR and “real socialism”, since 1989-91, was a historic defeat for the workers. The hecatomb opened counterrevolutionary era that subsists until today. In the new hegemonic order, the losses of workers and population across the world were enormous. Victorious, international capital, under the direction of Yankee imperialism, glimpsed an eternal “Brigadier's sky” before it. The boy's penetration into the former areas of nationalized and planned economy and the exacerbation of exploitation throughout the world would guarantee him a century of bonanza – the “New American Century”. They would march on the oppressed, unconcerned with the fate of humanity.

Man proposes, God disposes. They haven't even enjoyed two decades of cannibalistic bounty. Worldwide operations to impose the new order resulted in immense failures, consuming unimaginable wealth – Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. And, above all, in Russia, the Yeltsin Era [1991-1999], in which the former USSR subsisted as a dumping room for international capital, gave way to the Putin Era, which reorganized the national capitalist space, with acceptance-discipline of capitalism gangsteril current. In the new resettlement, the large state oil, armament and space industries played an important role.

The east winds were even more toxic. China entered the international division of labor by producing goods with low added value, with the sweat of legions of modern semi-slaves, controlled by a renegade Communist Party. Next, it modernized its productive structure, supported by national, state and international capital and its Amazonian market and workforce. The dragon that had awakened breathing clouds of innocent smoke, began to expel flames across the world. Under the astonished eyes, especially of the globalized Yankee capital, “owner of the ball and the field”, Chinese imperialism emerged, demanding essential vital space for its survival.

 

the pantagru hungeréNATO lica

In 2008, the capitalist world experienced the most serious crisis since the Great Depression of 1929. In its senile stage, the capitalist order has shown itself, for a long time, incapable of advancing the material productive forces, to maintain its rate of profit, the not be producing destruction and social barbarization. Despite Putin's goodwill towards the West, to regain momentum, the great US and European capital was counting on the disorganization of the Russian State and the resumption of the Balkanization initiated with the dissolution of the USSR. The vast Russian and neighboring territories would become a semi-colony, in a modernization of the German monopoly capital program under Nazism.

US and European imperialism maintained permanent harassment of Russia, making use of all unimaginable subterfuges, with initial emphasis on favoring Chechen separatism. The central axis of the offensive was military pressure, which had contributed to the explosion of the USSR in 1991. Despite the drunken promises of 1990 not to expand NATO even a meter to the East, horseback riding was undertaken with loose reins, tightening without mercy the military siege of Russian borders. NATO first swallowed the satellite countries of the former USSR and then its broken republics. In 1999, the Czech Republic and Hungary; in 2004, Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia; in 2009, Albania and Croatia; in 2017, Montenegro and in 2020, North Macedonia.

Putin's Russia began the response to this offensive by sending its armies against Georgia's expansionism, in 2008. However, in a quality leap, the USA, with European agreement, promoted the coup d'état in Ukraine, in 2014, which enthroned government philo-western and Russophobic. Neo-Nazi militias collaborated in the victory of EuroMaidan's “color revolution”, heirs of the Ukrainian hordes that supported the Nazi butchers in World War II.

 

2014: Odessa under neo-Nazi terror

On May 2, 2014, in the continuation of the imperialist coup, the neo-Nazi militias burned alive, in the House of Trade Unions in Odessa, 42 demonstrators and trade unionists who opposed the US-NATO coup d'état. The world media reported those and other similar successes as a result of “confrontation” between pro and anti euromaidan. Identified, none of the promoters of the massacre were arrested and tried, having progressed in the new order. Now, neo-Nazi militias claim recognition as official troops.

In response, in 2014, the Putin government reincorporated Crimea into Russia. In 1954, she was administratively moved to Ukraine, a republic of the USSR. At the time, a measure without major consequences for the local population – 58% ethnic Russians and 24% are Ukrainians, in 2001. It was Nikita Khrushchev, a Stalinist leader with political roots in Ukraine, who promoted administrative reorganization. At the same time, an autonomist movement in Donbas, a working-class and industrialized region with a mainly Russian-speaking population, proclaimed its autonomy, giving rise to the republics of Donetsk and Luhansk, a decision reaffirmed there and in Crimea by plebiscite. Those regions, with terrible memories of the Nazi occupation, feared the new Russophobic order, with neo-Nazi auxiliary troops.

With the response to the pro-imperialist coup in Ukraine, the heavens fell on Russia, with “sanctions” of all kinds, to weaken that nation, sensitive to oil and gas prices. The justifications were fanciful: intervention in the Yankee elections; poisoning of Russian dissident; attacks by Muscovite hackers, etc. Sanctions have done Russia enormous damage. In 2015, also in response to the imperialist offensive, together with Iran, Russian military support reversed the pre-collapse situation of Syria, a former ally of the USSR and Russia. That nation had been wounded by a genocidal campaign, with half a million dead, driven by the western imperialist conglomerate. Massacre celebrated by the world media and not a few so-called left-wing organizations.

 

the pap bugão é the China

But it was imperialist China that had become the bogeyman of Yankee imperialism, by disputing its economic, industrial, financial and technological world primacy. After numerous warnings from Putin, the growing harassment of Russia led him to turn to the East, establishing economic and diplomatic relations with China that did not cease to grow. Russia's atomic and military power and China's economic and financial power outlined a scenario in which the US would face and eventually win a localized confrontation with Russia or China, separate but not associated.

Donald Trump rehearsed rapprochement with Russia, to dissociate it from China, but retreated under the attack of the deep state. With Biden, the anti-Russia offensive was exacerbated. It had been announced by the Democrat Hillary Clinton, when she was running for president, with Putin's intervention in Syria as justification. Russia is the soft underbelly of the Moscow-Beijing alliance. They have a relatively fragile economy – 40% of Germany's GDP, the same as Brazil's –; exports centered on oil, grains, weapons. The USA mobilized European subjects more easily against Russia, the eternal enemy living next door, unlike China, lost in the far East and a source of good business. Russia's defeat-disorganization is the prelude to the anti-Chinese offensive, under significantly better conditions. Preceded or preceded by the forced realignment of Cuba, Iran, Syria, People's Republic of Korea.

On February 4th, in China, at the opening of the Winter Olympics, under the boycott of the USA and its allies, Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin certainly agreed on Chinese support against the very harsh retorts that would follow the invasion of Ukraine. Successes that China follows with interest, since it promises to recover the stray province by arms, if it declares its independence. Taiwan, under Yankee protection since 1949, functions as a huge hostile aircraft carrier planted off the Chinese coast.

The concluding declaration of the meeting proposed opposition to any spread by NATO and the reaffirmation of China's right to Taiwan. The two countries have strengthened military ties, without ever signing an explicit mutual defense treaty. The declaration states that they will continue, “without rest”, the strategic coordination of their forces and will oppose, in association, “external interference and threats to regional security”.

 

ukrainenia: strong dish

With Joe Biden, the anti-Russian offensive has radicalized. On June 23, 2021, the British destroyer “HMS Defender” advanced over Russian territorial waters, in the Black Sea, in clear provocation. The strong point of the imperialist offensive continued to be the growing incorporation, in fact, of Ukraine into NATO, awaiting formal membership. Progress was made towards standardizing the country's weapons with those of NATO, which began to train Ukrainian troops. The Ukrainian military control system was integrated into that of the Organization and joint military maneuvers were planned for 2022. There was talk of the construction of atomic weapons by Ukraine, with the conditions for this.

The constitution of a pro-imperialist and Russophobic puppet government in 2014 proceeded with the rigged election of a prefabricated president. He ran for office suggesting rapprochement with Russia and expanded initiatives against Russian-speaking minorities and Orthodox Christians, in an ethnic-cultural-linguistic cleansing operation. Neo-Nazi and ultra-nationalist militias continued to operate in the country. Ukraine's integration into NATO would bring ballistic weapons closer to Russian borders, creating an indefensible situation in the event of a preemptive strike. Incorporation into NATO was written into the Ukrainian Constitution.

It would be a coup de grace for the defensive structure of Russia, which lost, with the German invasion, on June 22, 1941, more than twenty million inhabitants. It is an empty phrase to propose that Russia's precautionary operation in Ukraine is meaningless as "Russia's nuclear arsenal is still more than sufficient to protect it from any country in the world." Russia fears, with the approximation of NATO to its borders, losing the situation of parity, even relative, in terms of the capacity to respond to a preemptive strike. Missile fire distance is the deadly advantage. For this reason, the USA prevented the placement of atomic weapons in Cuba. As for localized military clashes, they have always been with land, sea and air troops, as now in Ukraine.

 

Biden prepared the invasion of Ukraineania

With the knife ever closer to his neck, the Putin government proposed treaties that would guarantee Russia's security. In other words, respect for the 1990 agreement. It demanded the de facto or legal non-inclusion of Ukraine into NATO and the withdrawal of the Organization from the former satellite nations of Russia and its former republics. On February 21, in a long speech, when recognizing the People's Republics of Donbas, he recalled, without mentioning, the disastrous consequences for the defense of the USSR, of J. Stalin's temporization in the face of the Nazi enemy.

The USA and the European imperialist club responded with disdain to the request for discussion, reaffirming Ukraine's “democratic” right to join NATO. Right that the US denied Cuba in 1961 to protect itself with atomic weapons. They cynically reaffirmed NATO's pacifism, with a long and bloody criminal record, in Europe and beyond. Biden did not see the invasion of Ukraine in a crystal ball. He literally forced Putin to such an initiative, leaving him no other way out. The invasion of Ukraine was a prepared and pursued objective, to extrapolate the economic attack on Russia to infinity. This time, with the frantic support of European and world populations, electrified by the mainstream media and, what is strange, by parties and movements that claim to be left.

 

the positiontion of workers and socialists

Russia is a capitalist economy nation, under Putin's authoritarian rule, which represses workers, unions and all opposition. A government that proudly attacks basic civil rights – women and homosexuals, above all. None of this should be an obstacle or an excuse for workers, socialists, good men and women not to support Russia in its defensive military intervention in Ukraine, a country subsumed by the imperialist offensive.

It is not about defending, criticizing or attacking a leader, a culture and traditions, a political-social order. But the defense of the autonomy and national independence of a nation harassed and attacked by imperialist nations, who aim for its destruction. It matters little whether he is capitalist or even feudal. Serbia's unconditional defense against NATO's murderous bombing was independent of Slobodan Milošević's assessment. The same happened with Saddam Hussein, for Iraq; Bashar al-Assad, for Syria; Muammar al-Gaddafi for Libya or the plump heir to power in the People's Republic of Korea. These leaderships are excuses for “democratic” imperialist attacks that sought and seek to destroy them, in order to fully submit them to their domination.

On the left, immersed in confusion, the proposal flourishes that the workers are not interested in the meaning and result of the US-Russia confrontation, since it would be a dispute between capitalist and imperialist nations. The only contradiction that matters would be that of workers against capital. The proposal of “revolutionary defeatism” is remembered, the genial orientation of V. Lenin, agitated with the German and tsarist troops, in the First World War. At the time, when the revolution was advancing in Europe and Russia, with very strong workers' organizations, this slogan was not a cake filled with wind. Today, we live in a counterrevolutionary period, with a general offensive by big capital, with the world of work in a depressed situation, without a revolutionary party with broad support among workers.

 

AIRússia não é imperialist

Even if it is not decisive for the present discussion, it is difficult to define Russia as an imperialist nation, in the Marxist sense of the term. Lenin proposed, as the main determination of “imperialism”, the domain of the export of monopoly capital, and not of goods. In this “superior stage of capitalism”, financial capital exploits the workforce on the spot, in the parasitized nation, where it obtains super profit, due to its size and technological advances. As with the USA, China, Japan, France, England, etc.

The Russian economy is dominated by the export of oil, gas, grain and weapons. It imports and does not export capital. We invite our readers to look around Brazil for Russian monopoly industries. Russia is, economically, a semi-colonial nation, dependent mainly on German and European capital. Which does not prevent it from becoming an imperialist nation, in an undetermined future. In the current discussion, the determinant is that it is a nation attacked in national autonomy, regardless of whether or not it is imperialist.

The struggle between labor and capital does not cover all aspects of social life, even though it is central and decisive for the solution of non-class contradictions. After 1917, the Bolsheviks proposed a radical solution to the vexing question of national, non-class contradictions. They organized the great nationalities into republics, with the right to become independent from the USSR, if the majority of their population wanted it. They were able to do this because they had expropriated big capital and fought to keep it away from their borders.

 

The left foreveró-imperialist

This solution, unthinkable for the time and for the bourgeois forces, sought to satisfy the aspirations of national communities and not leave room for the dominance of large nationalities over small ones. The Bolsheviks feared Great-Russian national sentiments, which were expressed within the party itself. The chauvinism of the Slavic – Russian – majority had been used by tsarism to dominate the minor nationalities of the Empire – “the prison of the peoples”. The Russification of minorities was a permanent practice of tsarism, resumed during the Stalinist period. Something that happens today in the “reverse” direction, against populations with a Russian identity, especially in southern Ukraine.

On the Marxist-revolutionary left, there are those, like the PSTU leadership, who demand that Russia withdraw from Ukraine and return Crimea, regardless of the will of its population. And, in a cynical way, he proposes that Russia, in order to “defend itself from NATO troops on its borders, should call for a great mobilization of the Ukrainian, European, North American… and Russian peoples, against the advance of NATO troops. […].” Proposal reminiscent of posadists calling for extra-planetary support for the revolution. It simply defends imperialist policies, which they have been doing for decades. Which deserves a closer look.

In a completely opposite sense, unconditional support for Russia is advocated, rightly emphasizing that it is a defensive movement. But total trust is mortgaged in Putin – and therefore in the Russian bourgeoisie – and silence is given about Ukrainian national rights. Rights that Putin showed a willingness to ignore, as far as possible, in a resumption of Great Russian chauvinism, which is not new. This intention was made clear in his speech on February 21, when he practically proposed that Russia and Ukraine were once the same thing, the latter being the invention of the “madness” of the Bolsheviks, in general, and of Lenin, in particular.

 

give to Russia and to Ukrainenia what é to giveússia and ukraineania

Putin, in a contradictory way, criticizes, on the one hand, the unavoidable right of nationalities to self-determination, an old horror of the tsarist empire, of the Stalinist USSR, and of the bourgeois states in England, Spain and so on. And, on the other hand, it suggests that, in Ukraine, the communities of the Russian-speaking majority regions decide their fate democratically, outlining the idea of ​​their separation and incorporation, legally or in fact, into Russia. This proposal, from the point of view of Bolshevik nationalities, is a right that, however, should not be exercised at gunpoint.

The working world, the left, Marxists, good women and men must demand the promptest and fullest withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine, with the concomitant general withdrawal of NATO from Russian borders, forever and ever. They must demand respect for the independence of the Donbas republics and their right to join Russia. And the right to full autonomy of the Russian-speaking regions of Ukraine, extended, of course, to all communities in Europe and the World, in the same situation. Initiatives sanctioned by plebiscites without manipulation.

The current confrontation was wanted by the US-led imperialist conglomerate, which now imposes a terrible general economic offensive against Russia, with the aim of dismantling its economy, insurrectioning its population, creating separatist tendencies. Campaign whose strategic objective is the destruction of China and all states that oppose it. The care taken by Russian troops to carry out an operation that injures the Ukrainian civilian population as little as possible, and that does not result in serious Russian losses, has delayed the intervention, allowing imperialism to prepare the transformation of Ukraine into a new Russian Afghanistan.

International “democratic” and neo-Nazi troops are already being announced to fight against the Russians, as in Afghanistan, Chechnya and Syria. In Rio Grande do Sul, he was arrested as a recruiter for the Nazi Ukrainian militias. The defeat of imperialism's world action depends only on the workers and the popular classes, and never on Putin and the Russian armies. However, the eventual victory of the offensive against Russia, with a qualitative leap in Yankee imperialist hegemony, will terribly deepen the worldwide reflux of the working and popular classes. The defeat of the Afghan Revolution, in the 1980s, and the death of Muammar al-Gaddafi, in 2011, paved the way for regional barbarism, not for the advancement of the revolutionary classes. They gave rise to counterrevolutionary waves that are still felt today. Russia's defeat would trigger a tsunami of a size that is difficult to predict.

*Badmaestri river é historian. Author, among other books, of Awakening the Dragon: Birth and Consolidation of Chinese Imperialism (1949-2021).

 

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