Category Archives: Insert

Letter to citizens of the EU from the “periphery”: Politics of the closed borders are bringing us closer to fascist rules

Note from LeftEast editors: This article has been reprinted from the Medium account of Are You Syrious. We, the human rights defenders and citizens from the countries relegated to the “periphery” of the European Union (EU) and the Schengen space, want to express our deepest concern for the current situation in which we can see the rise of fascism and a deterioration in basic human rights, such as freedom of movement and the right to seek asylum. The leniency towards and acceptance of the rise of the far-right in European countries is worsening living conditions for people on the move and increasingly endanger ..

The Living Front of Stanislav Markelov

This article by Kirill Medvedev, a Moscow-based poet, translator, and activist of the Russian Socialist Movement, originally appeared in an English translation by Tom Rowley and Guiliano Vivaldi in Open Democracy–Russia and Beyond. Ten years ago, Stanislav Markelov was murdered in Moscow. He defended anti-fascists and ecologists, mothers trying to defend their sons serving in the army and citizens of Blagoveshchensk brutalised at the hands of the riot police, the relatives of Elza Kungayeva (murdered by a Russian soldier in Chechnya) and journalist Mikhail Beketov, who was brutally assaulted for coveri ..

Statement by LevFem Regarding the Latest Demolition of Roma Houses in Bulgaria: please circulate widely

Anti-Roma racism, ethnophobia, and prejudice have reached intolerable proportions in Bulgarian government, the Bulgarian public sphere, and Bulgarian society at large. LevFem stands in solidarity with our Roma sisters and brothers who are subjected to incessant daily racist abuse, harassment, violence, and dehumanization, and navigate countless forms of prejudice while surviving an increasingly hostile racist, ethnophobic, and xenophobic social environment. On January 9, Vice Prime Minister of Bulgaria Krasimir Karakachanov called bulldozers and began the demolition of informally-built Roma homes in the village o ..

The Threat to Rojava: An Anarchist in Syria Speaks on the Real Meaning of Trump’s Withdrawal

This article was originally published in CrimetheInc. on Dec. 28, 2018. Following Donald Trump’s surprise announcement that he is withdrawing US troops from Syria, we’ve received the following message from an anarchist in Rojava, spelling out what this means for the region and what the stakes are on a global scale. For background, consult our earlier articles, “Understanding the Kurdish Resistance” and “The Struggle Is not for Martyrdom but for Life.” I’m writing from Rojava. Full disclosure: I didn’t grow up here and I don’t have access to all the information I would need to tell you what is go ..

India’s urban and rural working class to embark on two day nationwide strike in January

The shutdown in rural India coinciding with the trade union’s strike will unite the farmers and workers to challenge the pro-corporate and anti-people rule of far right BJP government. December 19, 2018 by V. Arun Kumar, original publication PeoplesDispatch.Org Building a massive resistance against the neoliberal policies of the Indian government, farmers’ organizations have given a call for a nationwide strike coinciding with the two-day general strike by trade unions. In September this year, 10 central trade unions and independent federations gave a call for a nationwide strike on January 8 and 9, 2018. O ..

Lithuania: scope and militancy of teachers’ strike shakes the ruling class

Note from LeftEast editors: We republish this article which originally appeared on the In Defence of Marxism website, on 18 December 2018, authored by Henryk Kozlowski. Lithuania is being shaken by an unprecedented teachers strike, which has now entered its fourth week and is causing severe anxiety, distress and panic among the ruling class and its political representatives. Already, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis has been forced to sack not only the hated Education Minister, Petrauskienė, but also two other Ministers: for Culture, and the Environment. The lingering mess this right-wing government finds itse ..

#YouAreNotAlone: Call for international solidarity with Bulgarian women

A call for solidarity actions with Bulgarian women’s upcoming protest against politicians’ ignorance of women’s issues, issued by Левфем (Informal group of Bulgarian left feminists) and initially published on Diversia.net . Dear comrades, This is a call for international solidarity with an upcoming protest in Sofia, Bulgaria that will voice our anguish with a growing violent wave of misogyny in the country. The protest will take place on November 26, 2018. We will demand changes that do not only concern the criminal code but such that aim prevention of misogynic crimes. We will also demand ..

Reflections on Marxism and Welfare: East and West

Video of lecture and text of presentation. The text originally appeared on Paul Stubb’s website, Paul’s thoughts on the multi-level, complex and contested nature of everything. Presentation for “Marx and the Modern History of Welfare”, University of Trier 24 May 2018 Introduction Let me start by saying what an honour it is to have been invited to this event. I hope, however, that the rather pretentious title of my intervention will not raise your expectations too high. In the time available, I really want to present some personal, even idiosyncratic, reflections only on two moments – one involving Marxi ..

“Bulgarian welfare does not combat poverty but the poor”*

The article was originally published in the portal of the Bulgarian left, New Left Perspectives. KOI’s 2018 report “The people” against welfare payments: or the art of making those in need ask for more restrictions against themselves authored by Vanya Grigorova is a follow-up of an earlier, 2016 report entitled Poor against poor. That previous report detailed the ever-proliferating types of welfare payments existent in Bulgaria, the common misconceptions about them, and the discursive and policy stratagems the Right deploys to limit access to the social safety nets. The main thesis, then and now, is that t ..

Can Russia’s opposition come together to fight the Kremlin’s pension reform?

The article originally appeared in OpenDemocracy-Russia & Beyond. While popular opinion is dead against the Russian government’s continued neoliberal line in social policy, opposition groups are competing for influence and electorate. Translated from the original Russian by Thomas Campbell. Now that the State Duma has passed the first reading of draft legislation reforming Russia’s pension system, we can speak confidently of a serious turn in state-society relations in Russia. For the first time in 15 years, the Russian government is risking a large-scale, unpopular reform. The government proposes radica ..