24-02-2022: Snookering the relentlessly hostile provocations of Washington the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), Russian President Vladimir Putin signed two decrees on February 21 which recognised the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) – collectively known as the Donbass. In the presence of the leaders of the DPR (Denis Pushilin) and the LPR (Leonid Pasechnik), he also signed the Treaty of Friendship Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between Russia and the Donbass republics. This followed a meeting of the Russian Security Council the previous day, which was broadcast live on Russian television. Several members of that meeting pointed out that some 700 000 of the 4.6 million inhabitants of the Donbass already have a Russian passport, and some 500 000 more have applied for one. This effectively makes them Russian citizens who are entitled to protection from harm.
President Putin stated to his constituents that Russia had done everything possible to maintain the territorial integrity of Ukraine through the Minsk Agreements. However, seven years after signing the last round of them, it was becoming more clear than ever that Ukraine was violating the Minsk Agreements by not implementing them. NATO has been foiled because with Russia formally recognising the DPR and the LPR, it is a straightforward matter for them to request Russian military assistance against the relentless shelling of the Ukrainian forces against civilians in the Donbass. And indeed, this is precisely what Russia has now done, deploying a peacekeeping mission to the DPR and LPR. Obviously, no “invasion” has taken place, if the Russian forces are invited into the Donbass – in the same way that Russian forces were invited into Syria to help protect the Arab Republic against US backed terrorists from 2011 onwards. Sheepishly, responding to the news of the Russian peacekeeping mission to the Donbass, the White House refused to make a statement one way or the other.
This comes after around five years of continual Western “warnings” that Russia was about to invade Ukraine! Needless to say, these allegations are utterly baseless, and only recently have their cries become more and more shrill. This whole crisis stems from 2014, when the US state department orchestrated a Nazi coup against the then government of Ukraine. The word “Nazi” is not used for hyperbole – these elements are literally into Nazism. Backed by extremely anti-Russian, anti-communist (even though socialism in the former USSR disappeared decades ago!) and anti-Jewish barbarians such as the Azov Battalion, Svoboda and Right Sector, the US government backed “UkroNazis” proceeded to wage war on the Donbass, which took the only option available to it and defended its land against imperialist installed coup which later proceeded to do things such as a defacto ban on the Russian language. This, alongside rejecting an illegal Nazi coup government elected by no one, was part of the reason why the Donbass took action to protect themselves, and 96.77% of Crimeans voted to re-join Russia in the referendum which took place in March 2014.
Wag the dog scenario
Arguably, Anglo/US imperialism sought to ramp up their deadly provocations against Russia over Ukraine in a “wag the dog” situation – where an unpopular President seeks to distract attention by starting a war on the other side of the world. In any case, Anglo/US imperialism needed a political distraction from the huge impact of the Freedom Convoy in Canada, which beset Ottawa for weeks, and inspired replica actions in Australia, New Zealand, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Finland and Israel. Rather than just truckers, these Convoys mobilised millions of workers rightly fed up to the back teeth with vaccine mandates and all aspects of totalitarian repression meted out under the name of “Covid”. If these actions continued and deepened, global capitalism itself may have been called into question. To distract from the undeniably just demands of the Freedom Convoys – no one should lose their job over a vaccine, no one should be forced by the government to act against their will – Anglo/US imperialism ratcheted up the pressure on Russia. It wasn’t like they were not already doing it anyway.
Even though Anglo/US imperialism is entirely to blame for the dire prospect of a nuclear war on Russia, the Russian government did not aid themselves by actively engaging and implementing the fraudulent Covid “pandemic” and associated attacks on their own working class. Even though many Russians simply ignored some of the pointless or harmful restrictions put in place, the Russian government would have been better off taking the position of the Belarusian government of President Alexander Lukashenko – who resisted and stared down the enormous pressure from imperialism to crash the Belarusian economy, force people to wear facemasks and impose lockdowns. Unfortunately, President Putin and the Russian government dutifully carried out the scientifically absurd dictates of the very imperialist forces that seek to destroy them, in a vain attempt to assuage decades long Western anti-Russian hostility.
The seemingly infinite patience of the Russian government with the insane war provocations of Washington and NATO has yielded it almost zero in terms of results. Having abandoned even a heavily distorted and vulgarised version of Marxism more than 30 years ago, today’s Russian government fatuously appears to cling to the belief that through persistent diplomacy Russia will eventually be able to come to working agreements with the West in trade, investment, security and other matters. This delusion is fuelled by the Russian government’s wild misunderstanding of its own Soviet history, demonstrated by Putin’s recent speech to the nation over Donbass. While recognising the political repression of Stalin, Putin blamed Lenin and the Bolsheviks (!!) for not only the creation of Ukraine, but the problems existing now. Washington could not agree more!
Defend Russia despite its leadership
In reality, the problems in Ukraine today have much more to do with Stalin and his henchmen reversing the positions of Lenin and the Bolsheviks on the national republics, and virtually everything else, after taking power in a political counter-revolution beginning in 1924. Stalin could never have come to power without the failure of the 1919-23 German revolution, which was betrayed in blood by social democrats. Stalinism then completed its betrayal of October 1917 by handing the USSR to the USA via Yeltsin in 1991-2. During the 1990s, Russia entered a social catastrophe the likes of which they had never experienced. From 2000, Putin – despite his anti-Soviet politics – began the rebuilding of Russia by taking back key industries under state ownership and control. These had been privatised under US sponsored “democracy” in the 1990s with disastrous consequences.
Now, basic industries in Russia are state owned, or majority state owned. Of course, this state ownership is vastly different to the state ownership of, say, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) – which had a socialist revolution in 1949. Nevertheless, Russia’s state-owned industries are off limits to imperialism, and do not necessarily have to run purely on profit. Therefore, they make a huge contribution to the development and rebuilding of the Russian economy. For example, two-thirds of market capitalisation on the Russian stock market is owned by the state. Some “stock-market”! It is true that state ownership is mainly limited to four industries: energy (oil, gas and electricity), banks, defence and transportation. Yet defence and transport are total state monopolies. Compare this to the US, where giant privately owned “defence” companies more or less dictate to the US government.
Admittedly inheriting the Soviet Union’s formidable military, Russia’s state owned defence industry today has achieved virtual miracles – with a fraction of the resources available as compared to the USA. Russia’s hypersonic missile technology, for example, is at least 20 years ahead of where the Pentagon finds itself. This, above all, is why – despite all the bravado in the world – the US government repeatedly states that it “will not engage” Russia in military conflict. It could not do this in Syria, and it definitely is not able to do this in Ukraine – or anywhere else. It continually seeks a limited war – but given nuclear and now hypersonic weapons technology, a “limited” war is probably not possible.
The pall of nuclear war once again hangs over humanity, threatened by the unhinged elites occupying Washington, London and Brussels. As Russia is eons away from being “imperialist”, workers of the world need to stand for the military defence of Russia, Crimea, the DPR and the LPR and Belarus – while offering no political defence of governments which reject the heritage of the Soviet Union. Both the Covid war and any associated military or nuclear war can only ultimately be avoided by the working classes in the East and West disarming their respective governments through new socialist revolutions, modelled on the world’s first – Red October of 1917. Vital for this perspective is the construction of Leninist-Trotskyist vanguard parties, with linked international sections, to forge a future where the collective wealth of humanity benefits those who live by the sweat of their brow.