Anarchist and anti-fascist victory day actions in solidarity and in Russia
Regardless of the fact that we anarchists have no illusions about the aims of the Second World War and the so-called "victory over fascism" -- which was first of all the victory of the stalinist USSR over fascist Germany -- we welcome the anti-fascist actions taking place around the 9 May holiday and report on various news agencies and the active groups' websites.
Anti-fascist Hackers Break Into a Nazi site.
On 9 May, 2006 the Russian hackers group Antifa Hack Team broke into the neo-nazi site "Bseslovyanskiy Nazistski Portal" (All-Slavic/Pan-Slavic Nazi Portal). The site's header was replaced with "Anti-fascists of Russia. Antifa Hack Team." Photographs from the (1945) Victory parade were placed on the main page along with text congratulating anti-fascist veterans: "S Dnyom Pobedy! (Happy Victory Day!) We, the anti-fascists of Russia congratulate all fighters against fascism and all those who respect this country's history, happy victory day in the Great Patriotic War! Happy victory over fascism day! One day fascism will be defeated once and for all. Our grandfathers' task, for which they fought from 1941-1945, will prevail. Thank you to the veterans for what they've done for us!"
This wasn't the Antifa Hack Team's first such action. On February 8, 2006 anti-fascist hackers broke into the "National-Socialist forum" website.
Anti-fascist rally in St. Petersburg
On May 8, 2006 a rally in honor of the global day of struggle against fascism was held across from the Baltiyskiy Dom (Baltic House) theater. Around 70 participants took part in the event, including anarchists, liberals and human rights activists.
Rally participants called on the public to oppose any and all manifestations of fascism. One of the event's slogans included "Net fascismoo fsekh mastei - ot podvoroten do vlastei" (No to fascism of all stripes - from the backyard to the authorities).
A scuffle took place at one point in the event between rally participants and activists from the Nashi ("Ours") movement who tried to join in under the slogan "No to Fascism!" After this incident the opposition activists began to chant: "Not to Fascism in the form of Nashi-ism!" The resulting fist fight was broken up by the police.
Solidarity action in Kiev
A solidarity action in support of Russia's anti-fascists took place on 8 May in Kiev. Even though it was a public holiday [offices usually closed], the participants were able to get the message out via mass media and submit a letter to the embassy.
At 4pm local time, around 15 people gathered in front of Russia's embassy in Kiev to express their solidarity with Russian anti-fascists and their dismay at the actiosn of neonazis. The even was attended by members of anarchist, anti-fascist, left-socialist and democratic groups which originally formed during the movement of opposition to Kuchma's rule.
The assembled group brought portraits of Timur Kacharava and Sasha Ryukhin, which were eventually left by the embassy, flowers decorating each of them. "Nazism kills" was written in Ukranian on pieces of paper strapped together into makeshift banners which they made on the spot.
The decision to conduct a solidarity action was reached literally at the last minute. Although it was a public holiday, two major national television channels and the BBC's Ukraine service covered the event.
After a not-so-simple discussion with representatives of the "forces of public order" the solidarity action proceeded as planned. In the end, a diplomat came out of the embassy building to take the protesters' letter and asked for a "two-word" explanation of what's going on. He listened, as his face turned gloomy, said that the statement will be passed on and left.
The statement letter itself was quite brief. It expressed solidarity with anti-fascists and civil rights activists, condoleneces to the families and friends of the victims of nazi crimes, and support for civil rights activists' that stated: "Brown (represents Nationalists in Russian politics) terror must be stopped, it's organizers and benefactors must get what they deserve." In addition to this, the protesters distributed pamphlet entitled "Life exchanged for beliefs."
May 8 in Paris
Around 100 people picketed the embassy of the Russian Federation in Paris on May 8, the day of victory over nazism, to express support for all who are those who targets of unpunished/ignored neonazi attacks in Russia, be they anti-fascist and anti-racism activists, who periodically face threats and killings, or immigrants and foreign students who're faced with almost daily aggression. It's important for them to know that there'll be continued international pressure on the Russian government regarding this matter.
Several groups involved in tracking the situation in Russia got together in front of the embassy, including Comité Tchétchénie Confédération nationale du Travail, Fédération anarchiste, No Pasaran, Observatoire des Libertés publiques, Ras l'front, REFLEXes, SCALP-REFLEX and Solidarité Résistance Antifa.
Despite the multi-striped and rather well attended picket line (considering that the information was distributed only over the internet and through personal contacts) the participants were met with an absolute refusal from employees of the Russian embassy. The embassy's representatives totally refused to accept the group's letter of protest which was addressed to Russia's Ambassador to France.
Nonetheless, we underscore the fact that this will not stop us. We promise support to all who struggle against racism and the rebirth of nazism in Russia and other countries, to ensure that anti-fascist solidarity doesn't remain mere empty words!