The road to Kiev- 26 May 2018
On the 2nd May 2014 socialist Andrew Brazhevsky, was killed by a band of fascists in the House of trade unions in Odessa, Ukraine. The police strategically withdrew and allowed the fascists to enter and burn the building, killing a total of 38 activists. Earlier that year, on the 20th February, a band of fascists overthrew the puppet of Russia, Yanukovitch. The regime of Poroshenko came to power, in alliance with the Svoboda group, that used the swastika as its emblem. The core of the fascists who had gathered in the Maidan square in Kiev, were mainly football fans. They used hotel Dnipro as their base from which to carry out their attacks. At the time, the country was heavily in debt to the IMF.
The workers’ movement had resisted the Yanukovitch regime as well as the fascist regime that came to power. One of their slogans had been for the return of the ex- USSR. If the workers had taken power in Ukraine, that would have posed an immediate threat to the mafia regime of Putin in Russia. On the other hand, through their control of Poland and Georgia, US imperialism has been steadily working to extend its influence in the region. US imperialism was behind the fascist coup that brought Poroshenko to power.
The strategy of imperialism has been to divide up the country and thereby divide the working class resistance. Russia was allowed to occupy the Crimea. In the West, the fascist Poroshenko regime holds sway. In the east, in mining regions of Lugansk and Donetsk the pro-Russian oligarchs are in control. In the East, Russian forces dominate the resistance and prevent them from marching on Kiev. The workers’ resistance has been repeatedly bombed, resulting in schools, houses and hospitals being without gas and electricity, in the heart of the colder months. Ironically, Gazprom uses Ukraine as a conduit for gas to Europe.
Not only are the Ukrainian masses under brutal fascist dictatorship, but there have been a number of attacks on their gains. Imperialist companies, Cargill and Monsanto are steadily taking over the wheat fields, the bread basket of Russia and the region. The pension age has been raised from 45 to 65. US imperialism met with Svoboda and declared they had broken from their fascist roots. Svoboda met with the Israeli regime and declared they had broken from their anti-semitism.
Why does imperialism still go ahead with sporting events in Israel and Ukraine, despite the openly fascist character of these regimes? It is that they want to normalise and generalise fascism.
When you brush shoulders with the local football fans at the Olimpiskiye stadium, spare a thought for the widows and widowers of Odessa.
They walk alone……………….