A hard to swallow solidarity: Ukrainian far right, liberals, and the US police riots

The ongoing US riots against police violence have triggered solidarity gestures worldwide: besides organising their own protests against racist violence, activists in many cities reacted by creating thematic graffitis. In the early hours of June 4th, Ukrainian capital got one, as well: the painting, which was posted on the social media accounts of people from the milieu of the neo-Nazi Azov movement and the Dynamo football hooligans, features a poorly drawn person in the KKK hood performing the Nazi salute. He is standing next to the phrase “Can repeat” (sic) and a hashtag, #whitelivesmatter. Instead of brush ..

Could a Global Pandemic Defeat the Rule of European Difference?

The rule of European difference Self-reflexive European conversations have produced a great variety of genres. They proceed on diverse levels of abstraction, attend to a wide range of topics and recur in numerous narrative situations, showing slight modifications depending on who is speaking to whom about whom. There is one common feature in all that variety: We are all taught to honour a single hierarchy of moral goodness. ‘Europe,’ an evocative synecdoche that signifies almost exclusively the societies, cultures, economies, polities, folkways, etc. of western Europe, is always already at the top of this ord ..

VIDEO – Paul Stubbs: “Authoritarian Neoliberalism, Radical Conservatism and Social Policy in Europe “

A lecture given by Paul Stubbs to the Open Learning Initiative of the Central European University on the 16th of May looking at the various ways through which social policy as a technical discipline ignores political economy. “The articulation of modes of governmentality that combine heteronormative familialism, repatriarchialization, nationalism, ethnicized demographic renewal and anti‐immigrant sentiments is particularly worrying. Diverse forms of layered social divestment are occurring, delivering a radical new vision of social reproduction and fundamental differentiations in terms of access to social ..

Victory!: the Criminal Case against Russian Socialist Movement Activist Dmitry Morozov Dropped

Translated by Sean Guillory Update from LeftEast editors: The security forces in Izhevsk (the capital of the Udmurt Republic of the Russian Federation) yesterday had second thoughts about launching a criminal case against the co-ordinator of the Russian Socialist Movement Dmitry Morozov (real surname Tsarenko, aged 21). Until that point, the activist had been questioned twice by the Center for Countering Extremism E and the Investigative Committee (CK), which had been trying to accuse him of alternately attempting to set fire to a local United Russia (‘hooliganism”) and “justifying terrorismR ..

Killing twelve chickens a minute – Some thoughts on organising in Irish meat plants

In recent weeks, the work conditions in food production industries in Western Europe, which run on the sweat and toil of an overwhelmingly migrant workforce, have come to the international media’s attention, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. While we can only rejoice that publications with a wide readership such as the Guardian or Deutsche Welle are paying attention to workers’ rights closer to home, it is somewhat disheartening to notice that, as usual, public opinion is concerned with disenfranchised workers only when their issues threaten to impact the more privileged classes – in this situation, the ..

In the name of the communist ideal

One of the received ideas that became a ‘truth’ after the fall of the Berlin Wall was that the Soviet bloc’s populations cursed communism, yet obeyed it slavishly. In fact, many social movements within the Eastern bloc had long aspired to genuine socialism. This article was first published in the French edition of Le Monde Diplomatique in March. The British Edition was published in May and is available here. The collapse of the Soviet bloc in 1989-1991 is still portrayed as a collection of simplistic clichés (1). British political analyst Timothy Garton Ash says that ‘in 1989 Europeans proposed a new mod ..

For an Independent Social Ukraine: a Statement by the Reds on the Biden-Poroshenko Leaks

A Statement of The Reds on Ukraine’s loss of independence Ukraine received its independence 29 years ago. The cause of political independence has always been close to the struggle for the social liberation of Ukrainians, particularly the country’s rebellious workers and peasants. The right of nations to self-determination was originally the slogan of the socialists Ivan Franko and Lesia Ukrainka. Since 2014, the Ukrainian ruling elite and its politicians have mercilessly fought over who could pose as the main “independence fighter,” while actually reducing Ukraine to neocolonial dependency ..

Defend Socialists and Environmental Activists in Izhevsk

Demand the politically motivated charges against Dmitriy Tsarenko be dropped! Since late April, Dmitriy Tsarenko (aka Morozov), one of the leaders of the Russian Socialist Movement’s branch in Izhevsk, Udmurtia, has been under increasing pressure from the state apparatus—in particular, from the Interior Ministry’s “Center for Combating Extremism,” often wielded by the authorities against political opponents. On May 15th, the police attempted to charge him with an arson attack on the office of Russia’s ruling United Russia party, and on May 18th, Dmitriy was officially charged with on the ridiculous of ..

Missing farm workers in pandemic times: Is it really “the virus’s fault”? The view from Italy

Note from LeftEast editors: this article is an extended translation by the author of a text, which initially appeared in Italian in Rivista “il Mulino”. Two months ago, farmers’ organisations across Europe (and beyond) started to raise the spectre of ‘empty supermarket shelves’ due to the lack of seasonal labour for the harvest of crops. After a spate of contradictory statements, internal clashes and U-turns, the Italian government seems determined to proceed with an amnesty for undocumented migrants to solve the problem. Thick and heated discussion over the issue has animated this whole period, ..

[Thou shalt] Honour the asparagus!: Romanian Agricultural Labour in Germany during the COVID-19 Season

Note from LeftEast editors: The article was first published online by the German magazine KATAPULT on 30. April 2020. It was translated into English by Philipp Lottholz. Not even a pandemic should endanger the Germans’ asparagus consumption. Even if Romanian seasonal workers bear the health costs for it – or die. On April 11, a 57-year-old Romanian harvest worker died from his corona infection.1 He had worked on an asparagus farm in Bad Krozingen in the state of Baden-Württemberg before the borders were closed. His employer had not adequately protected him from infection with Covid-19 – just as he hadn ..