Ukraine

HBO’s Chernobyl: a service to us all

Author

Les Hearn

Chernobyl was a disaster — there is no doubt about that — but what lessons should we learn from it?

Though the catastrophic meltdown and explosion of the RBMK Reactor No 4 happened almost half a lifetime ago, when police states claiming to serve the workers ruled eastern Europe, the recent HBO mini-series Chernobyl has brought that time back to life.

Though partly fictionalised and sometimes wrong (according to survivors and experts), the basic facts are correct.

From St George to Xi Jinping

Author

Rhodri Evans

The Times (18 May) has splashed our denunciation of the wearing of the old Russian imperial emblem, the St George Ribbon, by some members of Lewisham Momentum. The incident is only a specially gaudy display of the general political trend of the section of the Labour supposed-left which gravitates around the Morning Star.

EU left refuses to condemn Russian abuse

Author

Dale Street

On 14 June the left bloc in the European Parliament voted against a motion demanding Russia release Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov and 70 other Ukrainian political prisoners.

It was official policy of the left bloc, GEU/NGL, to vote against the motion. Only six members of the 52-strong faction rebelled: five by voting for, and one by abstaining. The GUE/NGL has not issued a statement explaining its opposition to the motion.

485 MEPs voted for the motion. 76 voted against. And 66 abstained.

Trump, Putin and the CIA

Author

Charlotte Zalens

The CIA’s report to US senators — that Russia intervened in the US presidential election to help the election of Donald Trump — is extraordinary. That’s not just because of the fact that Russia seemingly interfered in an election in the world’s most powerful country, but also because the US intelligence agency chose to make it public.

National Union of Mineworkers stands in solidarity with Ukrainian workers against imperialisms east and west

Author

NUM

The National Union of Mineworkers in Britain recently affiliated to the Ukraine Solidarity Campaign (USC), a network building support for independent unions in Ukraine struggle against both Russian imperialism and EU/IMF-driven austerity. We reprint below their statement in response to criticisms of this stance, republished with permission from the USC website. Following this is a message to the NUM from Sergey Yunak, President of Ukrainian miners' union PRUP.

The Left Opposition that is not left

Author

Ann Field

The Communist Party of Ukraine (CPU) has teamed up with the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine (PSPU) and a dozen smaller organisations to create the Left Opposition, “an alliance of left and centre-left parties and social organisations”.

In fact, there is nothing remotely left-wing about the Left Opposition and its constituent elements.

The CPU is a conservative Russian-nationalist party. It has no links with the organised labour movement.

Its press has overtly racist articles.

Ukrainian left fights for workers' interests

Andrej from the Ukrainian Left Opposition (LO) spoke to Solidarity.

The LO was created in 2011, after a split in a broader group which included Stalinists. LO aims to unite Marxist workers and intellectuals. (The Stalinists are now grouped in Borotba). From then our priority has been to find connections.

300 Ukrainian LGBT activists march and defy far-right's threats

Author

Dale Street

300 LGBT activists and their supporters took part in a March for Equality in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev last Saturday (6th June) despite threats by the ‘Right Sector’ organisation to drive them off the streets.

It was the fourth attempt in successive years to stage such a demonstration.

The 2012 March for Equality was abandoned when 3,000 protestors turned up to prevent it from going ahead. (Ukraine was one of the first post-Soviet countries to decriminalise homosexuality, in 1991. But popular anti-LGBT prejudices remain widespread.)

NUM connects with Ukrainian miners

Author

Rhodri Evans

Britain’s National Union of Mineworkers has recently sent two delegations to meet miner trade unionists in Ukraine.

One was to an all-Ukraine miners’ union congress in Kyiv on 21 April, the other to a meeting with West Donbas union leaders on 28 March.

The Ukraine Solidarity Campaign here comments that this sets “an example to our trade union movement in providing real solidarity with our brothers and sisters of the Ukrainian labour movement”.

NUM secretary Chris Kitchen has written to the TUC:

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