Issue 412 of Liberator out – Ukraine, Erlend, Extinction Rebellion

Liberator 412 can be downloaded here . This is the April 2022 online-only edition of Liberator and we hope you enjoy reading it.

What’s inside this issue?

Alongside Radical Bulletin, Commentary and Letters, Liberator 412 includes:

UKRAINES COMEDIAN PRESIDENT IS NO COMIC.

Kiron Reid saw great hope on democracys eastern border in Ukraine when this article was published in Liberator 398 in November 2019 after the election of Volodymyr Zelenskyy as president. Following Russias invasion of Ukraine, we reprint it here, followed by some necessarily anonymous reflections on Ukraine now and the path to war from an observer who knows the country well

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT UKRAINE.

A contributor with close knowledge of Ukraine

THE MEANING OF Z’ 

Carol Weaver looks at how Putins propaganda conceals the truth about Ukraine from ordinary Russians

WILL 41 GO INTO 16?

The Liberal Democrats have slashed the size of the Federal Board. President Mark Pack answers his critics on this

RUSSIAS GOTTERDAMMERUNG GOES GLOBAL

Putins Russia hides behind mercenaries to keep thugs in power across the global south, says Rebecca Tinsley

WHO WILL PUTIN HELP IN AMERICA? 

Will the Ukraine conflict allow Joe Biden to appear a war leader, or benefit Republicans through the impact on Americas economy? With only a wafer thin Democratic majority in Congress, Andrew Edlin looks at the options

SITTING AND SMOKING

An encounter with Extinction Rebellion got David Grace thinking about whether direct action persuades or alienates

HOW WE WORKED WITH THE GREENS

South Oxfordshires Lib Dem and Green pact has worked well, but isnt for everywhere, says Sue Cooper

OBITUARY: 

Erlend Watson, by Ed Fordham

Reviews

One Party After Another – the Disruptive Life of Nigel Farage, by Michael Crick

Belfast, by Kenneth Branagh (director)

Citizens, by Jon Alexander with Ariane Conrad

Naoroji, pioneer of Indian Nationalism, by Dinyar Patel

Anatomy of a Nation – A History of British Identity in 50 Documents, by Dominic Selwood

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4 Comments

  • Brad Barrows 3rd Apr '22 - 4:29pm

    Interesting that Rebecca Tinsley manages to mention that the Russian Wagner Group is named ‘Wagner’ as that was Hitler’s favourite composer, but does not think it worth pointing out that the Azov Battalion, which has been leading the defence of Mariupol against the invading Russian forces, is widely viewed as a neo-Nazi organisation. The Wagner Group are probably well described as ‘thugs’ but I think the Azov Battalion is equally worthy of that nomenclature.

  • Phil Beesley 3rd Apr '22 - 4:59pm

    It is fair for Brad to identify neo-Nazis acting in the Ukrainian defence forces.

    I do not have a high opinion of many European governments. However, actions by UK or EU governments are not in support of right wing movements or Ukrainian nationalism.

    As liberals, we want Ukraine and neighbours like Poland or Hungary to adopt liberal values. Those were objectives before the war, weren’t they?

  • Brad Barrows 3rd Apr '22 - 11:13pm

    @Phil Beesley
    Thanks for your comment. However, as for “actions by UK government…are not in support of right-wing movements or Ukrainian nationalism”, you may not be aware that a photograph of a meeting held in September 2021 described as “UK COMMANDERS IN UKRAINE MET NEO-NAZI-LINKED NATIONAL GUARD TO ‘DEEPEN MILITARY COOPERATION’” was revealed last year by ‘Declassified UK’. Proves nothing, but concerning.

  • The Liberator piece by a contributor with close knowledge of Ukraine comments:
    “There are neo-Nazis and extreme nationalists in Ukraine but they are a tiny percentage and have minimal political support. But it must be obvious why patriot badged nationalist battalions such as Azov have had much support. Your country being attacked and invaded and told it has no right to exist can do that.”
    These groups came to the fore in the Maidan protests of 2014 that saw Yanokovich flee to Russia. The government was brought down by ordinary people in the streets, but much of the resistance to the attacks of Yanokovich’s armed police on peaceful demonstrators came from the Ukrainian nationalist groups. Although small in number many are from the so called ‘Ultras’ – violent groups of Ukrainian football fans that oppose separist groups https://www.esquire.com/uk/culture/news/a7051/ukraine-ultras/.
    We should not elevate their importance as Putin is doing as a pretext for invasion of Ukraine. Many of these Ukrainian nationalists regard soviet communism and Nazi fascism as two sides of the same coin and oppose the ideology of both. The Zelensky government will need to disarm these groups as and when peace is restored, but his won’t be the only European government dealing with a turbulent far right faction or football fans prone to violence in its midst.

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