No to Putin, no to NATO! For the internationalist unity of the working class against war and militarism!

The war in Ukraine has become the new battlefield between the great powers and imperialist blocs for world hegemony. As in 1914, both the capitalist regime of Putin supported by China, and the US together with the declining European powers grouped in NATO, appeal to noble reasons to justify his militaristic intervention. But the whole heap of propaganda and misinformation hides a war for dominance of the world market, capital flows, spheres of influence, raw materials and trade routes.

As revolutionary Marxists we condemn the brutal military invasion decided by the Russian government, whose interests in this conflict have nothing to do with "denazifying" Ukraine or protecting the population of Donbas, but that does not make us close our eyes to the direct responsibility of US imperialism and NATO, which have decided to prolong the war even at the risk of Ukraine being completely devastated.

Both the capitalist regime of Putin, supported by China, as well as the US and declining European powers grouped in NATO, are fighting in this war for dominance of the world market. 


For Washington's plans, the Ukrainian people are only cannon fodder in a confrontation that has been hatched for a long time, and that is allowing them, at least so far, to ensure the servility of the EU and to strike a blow at Germany to break its economic ties with Russia and China. The US ruling class wants to maintain its determining influence on the European continent at any price, applying a strategy that leads to unpredictable chaos in the military, economic and political fields.

The reformist left capitulates

As in 1914, the shameful capitulation of European social democracy to NATO, US and European imperialism is astonishing. The case of Spanish President Pedro Sánchez is paradigmatic. Governing in coalition with Podemos and Izquierda Unida (“Unidas Podemos”), he has faithfully followed Washington's diktats, including a trip to Kyiv to meet with Zelensky and to announce Spain's largest military aid shipment to date. A position publicly endorsed by the Vice President of the Spanish Government, Yolanda Díaz, a member of the Communist Party of Spain (PCE) and head of Unidas Podemos for the next general elections.

Just like traditional social democracy, the new reformist left has also caved to Western propaganda by directly joining the NATO choir or claiming, in the best of cases, "negotiations for a full and lasting peace" with the same powers that have brought us this far. This is how it is stated in the manifesto promoted by intellectuals and leaders such as Noam Chomsky, Pablo Iglesias or Jeremy Corbyn[1].

Of course, no denunciation of the imperialist interests of the US and European governments, which have led wars that destroyed entire nations (Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria...) and continue to do so today (as in Yemen). No condemnation of the despicable cynicism of the warmonger Biden  — who until recently was presented as a champion of world "progressivism" — when he speaks of a conflict between "democracy" and "authoritarianism". No calling to organize massive mobilizations to stop this and all the reactionary wars and the barbarism that is being committed against millions of innocents. No serious opposition against the adjustment plans and the new social cuts that are being prepared by appealing to "national unity" and "social peace", and that will impoverish hundreds of millions but will line the pockets of the big monopolies.

The dynamics of war

In recent weeks we have seen how all the attempts to reach a truce, all the contacts and telephone calls between European leaders and Putin, all the mediations, and finally, the peace talks in Istanbul, which seemed to point to the possibility of achieving an agreement, have collapsed. The Turkish Foreign Minister himself, Mevlut Cavusoglu, pointed out responsibilities: “After the meeting of NATO foreign ministers, I had the impression that... there are people within the NATO member states who want the war to continue and for Russia to be weakened”[2].

As we have explained in previous materials[3], the war in Ukraine is just one more link in the battle for world hegemony in a context of organic crisis of capitalism. US imperialism has suffered defeat after defeat in the last decade, while China burst onto the scene and established itself as the most influential economic power in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and even in much of Latin America. This decline was fully evident with the outbreak of the pandemic, which has claimed more than a million American lives compared to the 4,655 deaths in China and took a leap with the humiliating US military and political defeat in Afghanistan.

Washington urgently needs to make up for itself and try to recover part of the lost ground, starting with Europe, which it has so far subordinated to its aggressive warmongering strategy. The continuous declarations of the Biden Administration against the Xi Jinping regime reveal their true intentions: they need a decisive defeat of Putin to stop China as well, and that is why they boycott any kind of agreement, deepening the terrible cost to the Ukrainian people of this conflict, with thousands of deaths, 7.1 million internally displaced persons and more than 5 million refugees who have left the country, a 50% drop in GDP, 60.000 million damage to infrastructure...

The war is entering a more decisive and virulent phase of unforeseeable consequences. The offensive in Donbas by Russian troops has made clear the true intentions of the Putin regime: to gain control of southern and eastern Ukraine, dominating its main industrial and mining area and its only outlet to the sea. The political form in which this imperialist territorial annexation would materialize is yet to be seen. In turn, the US, NATO, and a large part of European countries have launched themselves to supply the Zelensky government with heavy weapons in large quantities (tanks, artillery, helicopters, etc...) and bog down Russia in an endless conflict.

The declarations of the NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, pointing out that the war could last “weeks, months or years”, are eloquent in this regard. This position has been echoed with the same warmongering enthusiasm by the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, who said that: “There is no difference between heavy and light weapons. Ukraine must receive everything it needs to defend itself... We have to do everything we can to prepare for the fact that the war can last for months and even years in the worst case.”

And so they are doing. The aid received by the Zelensky government in just a couple of months is unparalleled: more than 8.000 million from the US, 4.100 exclusively in military aid, 2.900 million from European countries, and another 2.000 million from the European Investment Bank. Almost 15,000 million, the equivalent of 9% of the Ukrainian GDP![4], which could reach 24.000 million throughout 2022[5].

Biden's request to the US Congress for a "supplemental budget to maintain the flow of weapons and ammunition to Ukraine without interruption"[6], and his meeting with the eight largest US arms companies (Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, L3 Technologies, Boeing…) to increase their production shows how far they are willing to go[7].

The aid received by the Zelensky government in just a couple of months is unparalleled: almost 15.000 million, the equivalent of 9% of the Ukrainian GDP! 

The character of the "Ukrainian resistance" and Putin's anti-communism

Zelensky and his government are mere puppets of US imperialism. The idea that they are leading a progressive struggle for the national liberation of Ukraine is a complete fraud. This government, like Western imperialism, cares very little for the Ukrainian people, just like democracy. Everything is pure war propaganda to hide the real interests at stake.

As we have explained[8], the Ukrainian state apparatus and army are dominated by extreme right-wing and neo-Nazi groups such as the famous Azov Battalion, integrated into it after the triumph of the counterrevolution in the Euromaidan mobilizations in 2013/14[9]. These sectors have been the backbone of the Ukrainian army during the eight years of civil war in Donbas, with more than 15.000 deaths, and have been denounced by numerous NGOs for committing numerous war crimes and human rights violations.

Since the Russian invasion thousands of foreign mercenaries have also joined their ranks. As a former Spanish legionnaire who fights in Ukraine pointed out: “I have not seen armed civilian militias here. What we have are military companies from many countries (...) there are Polish, Swedish, Danish and, above all, from the US”[10].

This is the reality of the Ukrainian “resistance”. An army led on the battlefield by chauvinists and neo-Nazis, with a General Staff that is guided by the indications of American and British intelligence, and that are declared enemies of the workers and oppressed of Ukraine. The idea that revolutionaries have to support these forces because they are resisting Russia by fighting for "Ukrainian national independence" is a mockery of the internationalism of Marx and Lenin.

The image cultivated of Zelensky as a democrat is another fallacy. Just a few weeks ago, his government approved by decree to outlaw eleven political parties, including the Platform of the Opposition-For Life, with 43 deputies in the Rada and almost two million votes, and all the parties of the Ukrainian left.[11] Before the war, the three communist parties that existed in Ukraine had already been outlawed, and their activists persecuted, imprisoned and killed. The images of Gypsies tied to lampposts, of executed or tortured Russian prisoners, or of disappeared Ukrainian dissidents, show that it is not only Russian troops that are committing war crimes.

This reality cannot in any way justify the imperialist goals of the Putin regime. In previous statements we have analyzed in detail the aggressive expansion of NATO in Eastern Europe and the real threat that this poses to Russia’s interest. Without subtracting an ounce of significance from Washington's provocative strategy as a trigger for current events, Putin's public statements are transparent: he is a great Russian chauvinist and a declared anti-communist, who charges against the legacy of Lenin and the Bolsheviks, those he accused of granting the right of self-determination to Ukraine and the rest of the nations oppressed by tsarism after the revolutionary triumph of October 1917.

Putin and the capitalist oligarchy that supports him deny the Ukrainian nation, do not hide their sympathies for the tsarist imperial past and have forged close ties with the European extreme right, as well as having the services of the mercenary military unit of the Wagner Group. These facts alone disprove the "denazification" story.

War, recession and class struggle

The military escalation and the prolongation of the war are accelerating to the extreme the serious contradictions that the capitalist system was already suffering from. The prospect of a new recession, and even of a deep depression with incalculable consequences, worsens day after day. And at the center is the European continent and its leading industrial power, Germany, which is already paying a price for sanctions against Russia.

Western sanctions have hit the Russian population hard but are far from decisive in stopping Putin[12]. Since the beginning of the war, Europe has paid Russia 40 billion euros for its gas and oil. With the current rise in crude oil prices, Moscow could reduce its exports by a third without even losing income thanks to the alliance it continues to maintain with OPEC[13]. But the dependence and interrelation of the European and world economy with Russian raw materials goes much further, affecting the production of enriched uranium for European nuclear power plants, also excluded from sanctions, or essential minerals for the automotive industry such as nickel. or palladium.

The alleged international isolation of Russia with which the "experts" and the media bombard us is a true fairy tale, which ignores the change in the correlation of forces that has occurred in the last two decades as a result of China's rise as a world power.

China's strong and decisive support for Russia is giving Putin a wide margin, and will continue despite the threats from the US and the West. As Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng recently stated: “No matter how the international landscape changes, China will continue to strengthen the strategic coordination with Russia for win-win cooperation, jointly safeguarding the common interests of the two countries…”[14].

China's strong and decisive support for Russia is giving Putin a wide margin, and will continue despite the threats from the US and the West. 

Hence the desperation and aggressiveness of the US and the most pro-NATO sectors of the EU, who are pressing for the supply of Russian gas and oil to be cut off as soon as possible. A step that would plunge Germany into a serious recession that could sink its GDP in 2022 and 2023 by up to 6.5%, the biggest setback since World War II, which would destroy hundreds of thousands of jobs and whose effects would spread: “assuming the worst (...) it could mean a reduction in European GDP of 3%”, in the words of Alfred Kammer, director of the European department of the IMF.

For a consistent internationalist policy

It is difficult to foresee how events will unfold in the short term. The IMF has already cut its global growth forecast by one point, leaving it at 3.6%, but even these estimates will fall far short if the war is prolonged and intensified, or if Europe suddenly cuts off Russian oil and gas. On the other hand, the inflationary escalation, prior to the war, has taken a new leap and will worsen in the coming months as a result of the increase in speculation and hoarding by the large monopolies. War means misery for the masses but great business opportunities for the capitalists. And so it is happening!

The wheat and food  price index reached an all-time high in March, above the price index triggered by the Arab Spring in 2011. The war is accelerating the collapse of the living conditions of the working class and the oppressed masses throughout the world, and is preparing, hand in hand with this crisis, great social upheavals, popular uprisings, insurrections and revolutions.

We revolutionary communists are clear in raising an alternative of class independence and internationalism which does not bow to the interests of any of the imperialist bandits, rejecting the "sacred union" with the bourgeoisie of our own nation and fighting without quarter against a “social peace” that aims for the workers  to pay the consequences of the imperialist war. As Karl Liebknecht said in front of the carnage of 1914, the main enemy is at home!

We reject the imperialist aggression of the Putin regime, and we demand the immediate withdrawal of its troops, and we point out that the war is also the responsibility of North American imperialism, NATO, and the European governments. None of them act for the freedom and independence of Ukraine but in defense of the spurious interests of their respective bourgeoisie. The obligation of the revolutionaries is to reveal and denounce this tangle of interests, the rotten arrangements and agreements of the capitalist governments, and the obscene profits that the great monopolies will again obtain at the cost of the suffering of the Ukrainian people and of a greater exploitation of the class global worker.

Following the example of Lenin, we fight for the national and democratic rights of the Ukrainian nation. But we know that only the impulse of a revolutionary and socialist action of the working class, that breaks all kinds of subordination to any of the imperialist blocs and that overthrows the Zelensky puppet government, will be able to achieve the authentic national and social liberation of Ukraine.

The only way to stop the imperialist war is the revolutionary action of the world working class and its unity with an internationalist and socialist program. 

In the face of the lies of bourgeois propaganda, in the face of those who resign themselves to begging the imperialist powers to "dialogue" and make empty calls for diplomacy, we point out that the only way to stop the imperialist war, the humanitarian tragedy of the refugees, the impoverishment and militarist barbarism, is the revolutionary action of the world working class and its unity with an internationalist and socialist program.


[1] Ucrania: ¡Paz ya!

[2] Some NATO states want war in Ukraine to continue: Turkiye

[3] Second month of war in Ukraine. The working class will pay dearly for the consequences

[4] Who is helping Ukraine? A new database makes international aid comparable

[5] The IMF, controlled by the US and which has always imposed draconian conditions to finance countries in crisis, says that the Ukrainian economy needs 4.6 billion dollars a month to sustain itself and that the aid should be in the form of donations and not loans.

[6] Biden pide presupuesto al Congreso para armar a Ucrania "sin interrupción"

[7] North American and European arms companies have seen the value of their shares increase between 15 and 70% since the beginning of the war.

[8] La extrema derecha en Ucrania: mucho más que los nazis del Batallón Azov

[9] La invasión rusa de Ucrania y la lucha imperialista por la hegemonía mundial

[10] Un francotirador español en Kiev: «Mis opciones de salir vivo de aquí son del 50%»

[11] Los 11 partidos que ha prohibido Zelenski en Ucrania: la medida que criticó IU ante su discurso en el Congreso

[12] Part of the Russian oil affected by the sanctions of the US, Great Britain or Australia, 1.5 of 3 million barrels according to the International Energy Agency (IEA), has been reabsorbed by the many countries that refuse to apply sanctions, such as India. (Rusia encuentra la vía para colocar el petróleo que Occidente no le compra)

[13] Las finanzas de Putin pueden sobrevivir a un embargo a la energía

[14] China Says it Will Keep Boosting Strategic Ties With Russia