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January 19: Anti-Fascist Marches in Moscow and Petersburg

19jan.ru/english/an-appeal-from-the-january-19-committee-2012

An Appeal from the January 19 Committee

Three years ago, on January 19, 2009, we lost our friends Stanislav (Stas) Markelov and Anastasia (Nastya) Baburova, who were gunned down in broad daylight in downtown Moscow. After many protest actions, marches, rallies, and speeches by activists and ordinary citizens shocked by this violence, Nikita Tikhonov and Yevgenia Khasis, themselves the unfortunate victims of the neo-Nazi narcotic, have been convicted of the murders and sentenced to life and eighteen years in prison, respectively. Events have come full circle and the criminals have been punished, but we continue to remember how sincere lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova were in their anti-fascist convictions. We are aware of their absence on a daily basis, when hundreds of activists, people from various movements and of different ideological hues, require an uncompromising lawyer to defend them and an engaged journalist to cover their cases and their campaigns. So for the third year in a row, on the day when they were murdered, the coldest day of the year, we will take to the streets in an anti-fascist march to remind our fellow citizens and ourselves of the need for each of us to continue our daily struggle with fascism. We must be extremely vigilant in order to recognize fascism in ordinary things: fascism mimics and constantly changes its guises without altering its essence.

There are changes, however, that only a blind man would not notice. Three years ago, the neo-Nazis switched from the indiscriminate slaughter of immigrants to targeted, more “effective” political assassinations: this is how we lost Fyodor Filatov, Ivan Khutorskoi, Stas, and Nastya. After Tikhonov and Khasis were sent to prison, ultra-rightists were on the verge of tucking their tails between their legs, but a year ago, in response to the unlimited callousness and corruption of the courts and the police, we were treated to the monstrous, senseless riot on Manezh Square in Moscow. A year later, in December 2011, during the mass protests against the rigged parliamentary elections, we once again saw extreme right-wingers trying to appear more respectable at meetings of protest organizing committees and on the podium at protest rallies.

They scream that it is time we stopped “feeding” the North Caucasus, although it is not the most federally subsidized region of our country: the problem is caused by the local authorities there, who embezzle all available resources and suppress dissenters. The neo-Nazis stuff immature minds with demagoguery about immigrants, but if their fellow “national-democrats” came to power in Europe and began kicking out ethnically and religiously “inferior” Russia, what would they say? They criticize the regime, but many of them are always willing to serve it for a small fee by breaking up opposition rallies and attacking environmentalist protest camps. It is the neo-Nazis who will support the current regime if it is faced by the real threat of a democratic revolution demanding freedom and equality for all. Along with other opposition forces, they are against anti-extremist laws, but they want to abolish them only in order to insult other ethnic groups with impunity and play them off each other. It is not immigrants and “aliens” who threaten a mythical “indigenous majority,” but rather an ultra-right minority that threatens the majority of people in Russia. The “Russian question” is not the issue, but corruption and an unjust social order that enables some people to suppress, exploit and gag others, regardless of their ethnicity and religion. Nationalism is an obligatory element in this society. The anti-fascist cause is an inherent part of the struggle for genuine democracy, for the right to vote, to speak and be heard for everyone now deprived of this right. Baburova and Markelov proved this with their lives and their deaths.

Please join us on January 19, 2012, at 19:01, on Nikitsky Boulevard, for a rally in memory of Stas and Nastya involving social and civic activists and musicians.

We will never forget, we will not forgive! Russia for everyone willing to work and live honestly!

***

The January 19 Committee is a public anti-fascist initiative involving people from various walks of life – workers and teachers, lawyers and journalists, artists and filmmakers, musicians and sociologists. The January 19 Committee was formed in autumn 2009 in memory of anti-fascist lawyer Stanislav Markelov and anti-fascist journalist Anastasia Baburova, who were murdered in downtown Moscow on January 19, 2009. The January 19 Committee will hold its third annual civic march against neo-Nazi terror on January 19, 2012.

More information:
Telephone: +7 968 836 9877, +7 919 970 0060
Web site: http://19jan.ru
LiveJournal blog: http://january-19th.livejournal.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/groups/393549975496/

_____

City Refuses to Approve Commemorative Rally
By Sergey Chernov
The St. Petersburg Times
January 18, 2012

The city authorities have refused to authorize an annual anti-fascist march and rally in memory of the slain anti-fascists Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova due to be held on Thursday, Jan. 19, allowing only a “picket” on the largely deserted Ploshchad Sakharova on Vasilyevsky Island.

Human rights lawyer Markelov and journalist Baburova were shot dead in downtown Moscow on Jan. 19, 2009, and the date has been marked with vigils and rallies across Russia since then. Other anti-fascists, such as Nikolai Girenko, Timur Kacharava, Ivan Khutorskoi and Alexander Ryukhin, who were also killed by neo-Nazis, are commemorated as well.

Stefania Kulayeva, the program director of Memorial Anti-Discrimination Center, said City Hall refused to issue a permit on purely technical grounds, just as it did last year.

According to the law on public assemblies, applications must be submitted to the authorities from 15 to 10 days before the event, but because of New Year and Christmas celebrations, City Hall was closed from Jan. 1 through Jan. 9.

Kulayeva said she applied on Jan. 10, the first working day of 2012, but received a refusal the following morning on the grounds that the application was too late. Last year, she said she applied on Dec. 31, just before the holidays, and a refusal was issued on the grounds that the submission had been made too early.

She pointed out that the Jan. 19 march in Moscow has been authorized. “We didn’t choose this date, they could have issued a permit, especially if they did not need more than one day to give us a refusal,” she said.

Nevertheless, Kulayeva said the protesters are planning to gather at 6 p.m. near Gorkovskaya metro, the closest station to Ploshchad Sakharova, and walk together to the site for security reasons, as threats against participants have appeared on neo-Nazi web sites. The event, which will feature a slide show, will be held at 7 p.m.

Under Russian law, picketing is defined as a form of stationary public assembly that does not use sound amplifying equipment. Only posters and other forms of visual agitation are allowed.

Kulayeva said that she received multiple phone calls from City Hall officials and police officers Tuesday, who warned her against holding an unauthorized march.

“It appears that the commemoration of human right activists and anti-fascists such as Markelov is highly undesirable for the authorities,” she said.

Markelov, 34, and Baburova, 25, were shot and killed by a masked man in downtown Moscow after they left a press conference at the Independent Press Center.

Despite international outcry over the killings, neither Prime Minister Vladimir Putin nor President Dmitry Medvedev reacted or offered their condolences to the families of the slain activists.

Interfax quoted a Foreign Ministry official who said that the murders were “artificially politicized and used, with dishonest intentions, to discredit Russia.”

In November 2009, Nikita Tikhonov and his partner Yevgeniya Khasis, described as extreme nationalists, were arrested in Moscow and charged with the double murder. The investigators said the FN/Browning M1910 semi-automatic pistol that was used in the double murder was found in their apartment during a search.

In May 2011, Tikhonov was sentenced to life imprisonment, while Khasis as an accomplice was sentenced to 18 years in a penal colony.

According to the January 19 Committee in Moscow, commemorative events for Baburova and Markelov will be held in 20 Russian cities, including Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg, Petrozavodsk, Ufa and Omsk, as well as in Ukrainian cities and in Berlin and Paris.

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January 19 Committee: Neo-Nazi Terrorism in Russia Today

 The January 19 Committee calls on everyone who cares to distribute this text as widely as possible.

Nazi terrorism. This is exactly how we should call the problem facing our society today, a problem no less acute than the fundamentalist terrorist underground in the North Caucasus. For many people, ultra-rightist terrorism is a relatively unfamiliar, new and to a great extent incomprehensible phenomenon. That is why bureaucrats, politicians, the media, the siloviki, and the expert community in the majority of instances prefer to ignore the real problem, presenting it instead as a series of isolated, unrelated excesses.

Telling in this respect is the bombing of the Nevsky Express train late last year. The Nazi group Combat 18 Nevograd first claimed responsibility for this terrorist act, followed a few days later by Dokku Umarov’s guerrillas. The media immediately began discussing the likelihood of neo-Nazi involvement. Many journalists, members of the security services, “experts,” and politicians demonstrated their total lack of command of the situation. A stereotype still exists in our society: contemporary Nazis are embittered teenagers in heavy boots who gather in mobs to beat up people who they think look the “wrong way.” Of course they can kill someone in a pack, but terrorism is a serious matter. Following the politicians on the right end of the spectrum, many are inclined to go even further: Those guys are not Nazis at all, they’re nationalists. Sure, they sometimes do stupid things, but in their hearts they’re patriots. You shouldn’t defame them. As it turns out, such notions, very much in the spirit of the 90s, are still extant amongst the populace. For the majority of average citizens, Nazis in Russia are a bit of disgraceful exotica.

For those who monitor the situation attentively, however, it is obvious that over the past few years the neo-Nazis have made the qualitative shift from street violence to the tactics of terrorist groups supported by a well-developed infrastructure of extreme rightists. It suffices to analyze ultra-rightist Internet resources and the statistics of nearly daily crimes to understand the scale and nature of the problem.

One of the most notorious events of 2009 was the murder of lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova. Two neo-Nazis have been charged with these crimes, and investigators had every reason to do this. Not everyone who was party to this crime has been apprehended, however, and the Tikhonov-Khasis gang is not the only one of its kind. On June 28, 2009, antifascist Ilya Dzhaparidze, who had promoted anti-racism among football supporters, was murdered near the entrance to his own building. On November 16, 2009, Ivan Khutorskoi, a leader and founder of the street-level antifascist movement in Moscow, was shot and killed in the entryway of his own home. This was the second attempt to murder Ivan there; the first such attack took place in 2005. On the morning of October 10, 2008, antifascist Fyodor Filatov, a friend of Ivan Khutorskoi, was killed as he left his home.

When we talk about attempts on the lives of antifascists, we should remember a series of attempted bombings. On December 22, 2006, a homemade bomb went off in the entryway of a residential building in the southwestern Moscow suburb of Lyublino; several police officers who were attempting to defuse the bomb were seriously injured. The device was attached to a radiator near the door of an antifascist’s apartment, and a swastika had been drawn on the wall near the bomb. On October 13, 2007, three neo-Nazis attempted to set off an explosive device containing the equivalent of 200 grams of TNT and packed with bolts and bits of glass at the Roks Club in Petersburg, where an antifascist concert headlined by a Swedish band was taking place. No one was injured thanks to the swift actions of security guards.

Another widespread misconception is the notion that the only people who are in danger are those in the so-called risk groups: people of non-Slavic appearance, active antifascists or members of subcultures. This is not the case. In recent years, “random” people have more and more often been the victims of Nazi terrorism.

On January 16, 2009, an attempt was made to blow up the McDonald’s on Zelenodolskaya Street, near the Kuzminki metro station. Black smoke began to issue from a bag left behind by one of the customers, and then a loud bang was heard. FSB bomb technicians who arrived on the scene discovered that the bag contained an explosive device that for reasons unknown did not go off. Members of the neo-Nazi group NS/WP turned out to have organized the unsuccessful blast. This same gang was responsible for blowing up spur tracks near the Tsaritsyno station on October 5, 2008, and the main tracks of the Paveletskaya line near the Bulatnikovo station on November 4, 2008, as well as the explosion at the Nicholas the Wonderworker of Myra Church in the Biryulevo-Zapadnoe district on November 30, 2008. The members of this gang who were arrested had committed almost two dozen attacks on passersby, people they regarded as non-Russians. All these crimes took place between November 2008 and January 2009. For example, on January 1, 2009, the gang murdered an Uzbek and a Dagestani on Biryulevskaya Street. On December 6, 2008, these same criminals attacked an ethnic Russian whom they mistook for a priest because of his thick beard. One of the leaders of the gang was 17-year-old Muscovite Yevgenia Zhikhareva, a student at the Water Transport Academy who personally participated in the murders. The terrorists were aided by 29-year-old Pyotr Bashelutskov, who worked in Moscow as a departmental head in the Russian Federation Ministry of Tourism, Sports, and Youth Policy. Investigators suspect that this government official provided the fugitives with money and fake passports.

The ideology of the NS/WP is expressed in texts on their own website:

It is time to change our psychology, to throw out all the shit of small-minded nationalism. Our cause is not nationalism, much less patriotism. Russia for Russians, yeah? But the Russians are a nation of enslaved people, degenerate Slavs. Russians are merely a nation, moreover a nation of unter-Slavs. This has to be understood. Russia was first a country of Russian Christians (which is a verdict in and of itself), and then the state of the Yids. Russia must be destroyed!

Another telling example of the psychology of the ultra-rightists is the text “Cultivate Your Inner Executioner!”:

If you see a white traitor or a white whore walking with their colored lovers, imagine how the white race is degenerated by mixing with inferior beings. Imagine the suffering of Russian children who grow up in poverty because the authorities give the best piece of the pie to non-Russians. If you see a pregnant colored or white whore, imagine yourself cutting the future Untermensch from her belly and train yourself to see this as an act of courage.

If your relatives condemn your views, imagine how you will execute them with your own hands once we come to power. Remember that they might become accomplices of forces inimical to the Russian people if you don’t stop them. Get used to the thought that the deaths of your antifascist relatives will be your noble sacrifice to God and Nation. A genuine National Socialist is someone who, even when forced to choose between his nation and his mother, will chose his nation.

When you see or read that some “distinguished cultural, scientific or artistic figure” condemns nationalism, racism and national socialism, remember that thanks to such “authoritative” figures, who brainwash the Russian people, our nation is still enslaved by non-Russians. Get used to the thought that we will have force them to serve the cause of national socialism or destroy them.

We should mention several other characteristic instances of ultra-rightist terrorism in 2009. Major terrorist strikes were planned for Moscow and Izhevsk on the eve of Victory Day, May 9. In Lyublino, a teenager who held ultra-rightist views was arrested for plotting to detonate in a crowded place an eight-kilo explosive that he had fashioned himself — according to the security services, his target was the chapel on Poklonnaya Gora. A 20-year-old neo-Nazi from Izhevsk planned to blow up himself and those around him with a one-kilo explosive device packed with shrapnel. In preparation for this act, he conducted a test explosion on May 2 in a forested area. The terrorist planned to blow himself up on Victory Day right in the middle of a column of marchers.

If we speak of the motives of these lowlifes, then an incident that occurred on May 9, 2009, in Tambov speaks for itself. There a young neo-Nazi was arrested after he attempted to tear war medals from the jackets of veterans.

One example of the well-developed terrorist networks that formed in 2007–2009 is the NSO (the National-Socialist Society). Thus, the video that they posted on the Web on August 12, 2007, which showed the beheading of two migrants against the background of a swastika-emblazoned flag, turned out be real, although many journalists and “experts” had been quick to pronounce it a montage.

The identities of the murdered men were established, and later suspects were arrested. The murderers were members of the NSO Obninsk cell. No less resonant was the posting of another video on the Komsomolskaya Pravda website on May 5, 2009. In this video, neo-Nazis from the NSO-North cell are shown beheading one of their accomplices, whom they suspected of treason. These neo-Nazis committed more than two dozen murders and a series of robberies, and they had planned to blow up a hydroelectric plant in Moscow Region. In the case brought against the NSO, more than two dozen neo-Nazis belonging to terrorist cells were arrested. The leaders of the NSO had links with State Duma deputies (with Nikolai Kuryanovich, in particular), and with a number of commercial organizations and neo-Nazis in Europe and the US. Such international ties are not at all unique in the neo-Nazi world. For example, a branch of the international terrorist organization Blood and Honour operates in Russia.

The Nazi terrorists mentioned above are only the tip of the iceberg. There now exists a tendency in the neo-Nazi milieu to heroize the most odious gangs of neo-Nazis. Such terrorists as Nikolai Korolev and the SPAS gang, who were responsible for the blast at the Cherkizovsky Market, or the Borovikov-Voevodin gang, who murdered the ethnographer Nikolai Girenko, sold drugs, and committed a number of other murders and crimes (including the murders of two of their own wayward comrades-in-arms), are now objects of adoration amongst ultra-rightists.

New groups of lowlifes are emulating these “heroes.” Extreme right-wing websites are distributing Voevodin’s book, allegedly written in the Crosses Prison (Petersburg), as a cult classic. The book is an artistic rendering of a hypothetical plan of action for a neo-Nazi terrorist group. As targets for attacks, Voevodin lists Orthodox priests and parishioners, members of the police and the FSB, trains, antifascists, celebrations for WWII veterans, and Jewish kindergartens. He proposes that migrants and homeless people be murdered as a way of “training” for “serious missions.” Voevodin explains that the goal of this terror is to spread fear and destabilize the country as a whole, thus easing the ultra-rightists’ seizure of power. He also suggests that the Nazis borrow the methods of the guerrillas in the North Caucasus. Yes, you heard it right: this sort of borrowing and even imitation is discussed on ultra-rightist websites and forums. Whereas Russian neo-Nazis had once taken their cues from ultra-rightists in Europe and the US, today they find their examples in the history of the dozens of terrorist groups that functioned in our country during the nineties and in this decade. What is more, neo-Nazis and racists in the west, who have been practically driven into total isolation, observe with unconcealed joy the expansion of the terrorist network in Russia: the members of all the groups that have been neutralized had been in one or another form of contact with members of other gangs and other such legal, semi-legal, and illegal networks.

In 2009, 75 people were killed and at least 284 people were injured as the result of racist and neo-Nazi violence in Russia. Over the past three years, no fewer than 277 people have been killed and 995 injured at the hands of ultra-rightists. In 2009, 319 people were convicted of crimes involving racial and ethnic hatred. This is two times more than in the previous two years.

And yet the crimes of the neo-Nazis continue. They have their own infrastructure, sources of financing, links to state officials, and security services officers who are loyal to them; and they continue to actively promote their cause amongst young people. The facts speak for themselves. All the known terrorists were educated and trained by the Slavic Union, Russky Obraz, and hundreds of other formal and informal organizations, which have supported them legally and financially after their arrests. All the murderers and terrorists were raised on the music of such neo-Nazi bands as Kolovrat, which performed in public in downtown Moscow on November 4, 2009. The absolute majority of organizations for “legal nationalists” are in fact accomplices of flagrant neo-Nazism and terrorism.

The most important problem is the absence in our society of an adequate assessment of the threat posed by neo-Nazis and extreme rightists, and, as a consequence, the absence of systematic measures for countering terrorism. Repressive methods are powerless to tackle complex phenomena of this sort: the Nazi milieu, which has been actively growing in recent years, is capable of successfully reproducing itself. In order to really combat the ultra-rightist underground we need to destroy this movement’s well-developed infrastructure, in particular that part of it where a convergence between Nazi terrorists and state officials (bureaucrats, deputies, security services officers, police officers) is taking place. Indifference to all problems has become the norm in our society. But this is precisely the situation in which such indifference is really dangerous. Our society is sick. It is sick with alcoholism, drug addiction, crime, and corruption. Nazi terrorism is another such illness. We have to recognize it and combat it, not pretend that the problem doesn’t exist. This is a situation in which the reaction of each person is extremely vital.

Here is information about the crimes of ultra-rightists and legal actions taken against them in December 2009:

—The January 19 Committee (http://19jan.ru/)


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Manifesto of the January 19 Committee

http://jan-19.livejournal.com/884.html

MANIFESTO OF THE JANUARY 19 COMMITTEE

On January 19, 2010, a year to the day from the murders of Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova, we, the organizers of an antifascist march, call on you to join our campaign against neo-Nazi terrorism.

The word fascism has been utterly devalued today. It is hard to find a political movement that avoids branding its opponents as “fascists.” But there are also meaningful interpretations of this term. Many of them have a direct bearing on what is taking place in contemporary Russia.

For some people, fascism is the extreme intolerance intrinsic to authoritarian societies. For others, it is an ideology of exploitation and coercion. For still others, it means the use by the authorities of covert paramilitary units for the suppression of democratic movements. Finally, for some, fascism is a force that murders good people, people like the lawyer Stanislav Markelov and the journalist Nastya Baburova, the young antifascists Fyodor Filatov and Ivan Khutorskoi, the ethnologist Nikolai Girenko, the chess player Sergei Nikolaev from Yakutia, the programmer Bair Sambuev from Buryatia, and hundreds of others. People who define fascism in this way do not divide their enemies into Russians and non-Russians, grown-ups and children, priests and punk rock fans, young activists and defenseless janitors from Central Asia.

It is not a matter of definitions, however. All the murderers come from one and the same environment.

They can be defeated only through a combined effort, only by overcoming the barriers that separate political activists from each other and from people who do not trust politicians and are not involved in the political process. For this purpose we are organizing an antifascist initiative that will unite people of various political persuasions with all those who consider themselves apolitical but who are convinced that the rise of fascism in Russia demands a clear response from society.

The neo-Nazis have changed. They now not only attack marketplaces, they also blow them up – along with railroad tracks, concert halls, churches, cafes, and the entryways of the buildings where their political opponents live. The fascists now not only beat up people on the streets, they also murder them. Neo-Nazi terrorism has become a reality.

If this goes on much longer, Russia will turn into a country wracked by ethnic cleansing and inter-ethnic war. We appeal to everyone who would rather not wait to see this happen. Act now: take a public stance using whatever means you have at your disposal.

We also call on well-known and respected people – scholars, artists, writers, and intellectuals – to support our cause with their good names. We believe that the struggle against the neo-Nazi scourge in Russia must be raised to a new level. It has to become a mass campaign of solidarity that reaches beyond youth subcultures and activist groups. The understandable aversion people feel to politics should not prevent them from recognizing the threat posed by neo-Nazism.

We believe that we have three main tasks today. First, we need to deprive neo-Nazis and racists of the explicit and implicit support they receive from bureaucrats and establishment politicians. Second, we have to drive members of ultra-rightist organizations out of mainstream politics. Third, we must put an end to the practice of using radical right-wing gangs to intimidate and murder social and political activists.

We call on people in various cities and countries to take to the streets on January 19, 2010, and show their solidarity with our cause.

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Speech of Moscow Antifascists at Berlin Memorial Demo for Silvio Meier

Thanks to Vlad Tupikin for this. You can see his photo reportage from the Berlin action in memory of Silvio Meier here

Vlad writes that 3,000 people attended the Saturday demo in Berlin. Typically, the Moscow authorities forbid a memorial march for the murdered antifascist Ivan Khutorskoi planned for Sunday after allegedly consenting to it. Instead, the much smaller group of demonstrators resorted to placing carnations on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, next to the Kremlin. (See the excellent photo reportage by blogger keltea here.) Later in the day, a group of about forty anarchists and antifascists held their own unsanctioned march in central Moscow (photos here).

Speech Given by Moscow Antifascists at the Berlin Memorial Action for Silvio Meier and Other Victims of Nazi Violence

Today, November 21, 2009, we honor the memory of Silvio Meier and other people who have perished at the hands of the Nazis.

Unfortunately, in Russia we also have good reason to remember the victims of fascist violence in November. Four years ago, on November 13, 2005, our friend and comrade the antifascist Timur Kacharava was murdered in Petersburg. This past Monday, November 16, 2009, the antifascist Ivan Khutorskoi was murdered in Moscow. Over the past three and half years, a total of seven antifascists have been murdered in Moscow.

But the antifascist movement is also growing. Because they can no longer risk open confrontations with the antifa, the Nazis have switched to cowardly murders on the sly, to shooting their victims in the back of the head.

Recently, the Russian president Dmitry Medvedev reported to the German magazine Spiegel about the solving of the murders of the antifascist lawyer Stanislav Markelov and the antifascist journalist Anastasia Baburova. Yes, specific Nazi murderers were apprehended. Yes, over the past year the authorities have intensified their fight against Nazi gangs. But the number of murders committed by Nazis (that is, those that we know about and could thus count) has practically not decreased. There were around one hundred such incidents in 2008, and approximately eighty in the first ten months of 2009.

We should not forget, however, that over the past years the state authorities and state propaganda in Russia have done much to incite xenophobia and nationalism and thus strengthen the Nazi camp.

We must not forget that at various times four major Nazi organizations have enjoyed the direct patronage of the authorities: Russian National Unity (RNE); the National-Socialist Society (NSO); the Movement Against Illegal Immigration (DPNI); and now Russkiy Obraz (Russian Way). The two people arrested on November 4 for the murders of Markelov and Baburova are members of this organization. That is why, in response to the murder of antifascist Ivan Khutorskoi, Moscow antifa attacked the headquarters of Young Russia, a puppet pro-Kremlin youth organization that provides “protection” for Russkiy Obraz.

As we can see, the Nazi terror in Russia continues.

And that is why we must continue to pressure the Russian government to end its support for Nazi front organizations, to end its nationalist propaganda, and to engage seriously in the capture of Nazi murderers.

We need to remember this not only on days like today, but on those days when Russian leaders come here to do their financial deals with Germany, when they come here to open art shows and film festivals and try in general to present Russia as a normal democratic country. Don’t believe them! Remind them about the unsolved fascist murders in Russia, about the Nazi terror that continues in our country.

Long live the international solidarity of antifascists!

The Antifascists of Moscow
November 21, 2009, 3:00 p.m.
Berlin, U-Bahn Samariterstrasse

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Copylefter: “They Killed Vanya”

The following text appeared yesterday in the LiveJournal blog of copylefter. According to several folks on our platform, it is the most thoughtful response to the murder in Moscow of Ivan Khutorskoi, an antifa activist. As such, it is less about that horrible event than about the growth of the neo-Nazi movement and the Kremlin’s attempts to control and manipulate elements of that movement for its own ends. It is also contains a very clear call for a mobilization of all normal people in Russia to face what is happening and unite to stop this double-headed menace. 

Although we have rendered the text into English as faithfully as possible, we have had to replace the links in the original with references to English-language sources and add a few explanatory links of our own. Our apologies to the author for this intervention.

Copylefter: “They Killed Vanya”

They killed Vanya. Now the Nazis don’t jump random punk-rock concertgoers — now they operate like professionals. And indeed, why else would they have trained so much at “patriot” camps and abandoned building sites if only to operate like a mob of disguised football hooligans who attack their victims with knives? If it goes on this way, then the right-wingers will simply gun down all the important actors in the antifascist network. Then they’ll finish off the “importunate” liberals like the folks at SOVA. Then probably they’ll go after artists: after all, they’re too visible, and besides, they already have practical experience with organizing pogroms at art exhibitions. And after that the selection of books at Falanster will arouse their displeasure… And so, without taking power directly, the fascists will quite palpably begin limiting the freedom of people who aren’t involved in political life. Meanwhile, the Kremlin will with one hand catch some “right-wing terrorist” or other, reporting to the west about the success of its operation, while with the other it will shake the hands of his comrades-in-arms, make them aides to Duma deputies, and shell out dough to organize right-wing resources — all exclusively within the conceptual framework of controlling the nationalists. What kind of fucking controllable Nazis are we talking about? How can you use training camps to “castrate” Nazis?

RNE (Russian National Unity), a 1000% police-controlled organization, was able to use the financing and resources of pro-Kremlin structures to recruit a staggering number of people to the right-wing movement: newspapers that were distributed amongst cops and the military, training camps… The story of the NSO (National-Socialist Society) and [Dmitry] Rumiantsev is also widely known, but who cares? Now there are new Nazis at the feeding trough — Russian Image (Russkiy Obraz). It’s total fucking nonsense: the guy under whose name [the organization’s] eponymous journal is registered is being prosecuted for a political murder to the accompaniment of the state-controlled media, while his comrades-in-arms write daring texts about “killer journalists,” and the Kremlin gives them permission to hold concerts by Kolovrat [a Russian Nazi skinhead band whose name is taken from the Slavic version of the swastika] in the middle of Moscow.

I will say it one more time: what kind of fucking controllable nationalists are we talking about? What, if you create a legal political buffer for them and feed them, they won’t kill people? Fuck that. Vanya’s murder is merely the latest tragic example of the idiocy of this idea. It’s clearly revenge for [the arrests] of [Nikita] Tikhonov and [Evgenia] Khasis, and the legality of the Russian Marches couldn’t stop it in any way.

Meanwhile, posts and comments have already appeared in LiveJournal in which people who “do not approve” of fascists talk about how the antifa are the same kind of shaven-headed extremists —just look at what a big guy [Ivan Khutorskoi] was, and he’s wearing a Lonsdale shirt. This is such a convenient way to distance yourself from the problem. It’s in the style of the late nineties: all politics is sansara, and the best way to deal with it is to consciously keep aloof. But keeping aloof is possible only if and when all participants in an event are equally losers. If you recognize that at least one of them has truth and honesty on his side, then keeping aloof is tantamount to treachery. And that is why the flywheel of collective therapy — “they’re just like the Nazis, they’re just like the Nazis…” — will start spinning again.

It is time to put a stop to it.  What is happening has long ago stopped corresponding to the favorite theory of office clerks made wise by their benefits packages (about turf battles between neighborhood teenage gangs) — this is genuine political terrorism. And the policy of the authorities vis-à-vis the right-wingers — this de-marginalization of Nazis in the teeth of a constant stream of murders — unties the hands of the “Aryan warriors” and enables them to recruit 100 people for every one that gets sent to prison.

Moreover, there is no need at all for any kind of “centers for extremism prevention” or passing harsher laws. As it is, they already forbid practically everything you can think of, but for some reason the Nazis aren’t becoming fewer. We need a decisive mobilization on the part of all people who don’t fancy ending up to their ears in fascist shit, despite the fact that we’re unaccustomed to traditional political actions.

We need to put an end to very possibility that the authorities could support the right-wingers. For the sake of this goal we can even forget about political differences, about our traditional fussiness and the fear of being deceived by “politicos.” Otherwise we’ll soon find ourselves in a country where the Nazis have grown so strong and made themselves so at home that it won’t even be possible to think about autonomy and personal freedom.

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Antifa and Leftist Activist Ivan Khutorskoi Murdered in Moscow

www.ikd.ru/node/11658

Yesterday evening at around 9:00 p.m., 26-year-old Ivan Khutorskoi was shot and killed in the stairwell of his apartment building (Khabarovskaya, 2) in Moscow. While the greater public might not know his name, this is a truly enormous loss for many Russian antifascists and leftist activists. Ivan held leftist views and periodically participated in various social protest actions. First and foremost, however, he was known as one of the informal leaders of the Moscow antifascist movement. It is obvious to most of Ivan’s friends that Russian Nazis committed the murder.

Like the addresses and names of many other well-known antifascists (for example, Stanislav Markelov and Nikolai Girenko), Ivan’s address and name were frequently posted on pro-Nazi sites alongside calls for his liquidation. And in fact the murder was the fourth in a series of attacks on Ivan. The first attack took place in 2005, when Nazis attacked him and wounded him in the head with a razor blade. This incident was captured on video and then later used in the program “Ordinary Antifascism,” on NTV.  The second time, the radical right-wingers were waiting for him in the stairwell of his building. Although Ivan received multiple wounds in the neck area from a screwdriver and numerous blows from a baseball bat, he miraculously survived. In January of this year, Ivan was stabbed in the stomach with a knife during a street fight, and once again Ivan barely survived the attack. But now, it would seem, the Nazis have succeeded in achieving their goal the fourth time round. 

Recently, Ivan has been involved in providing security at concerts of antifascist groups, and he was also an organizer of martial arts tournaments for antifascists. His friends will remember him as an extremely kind, life-affirming individual for whom the notions of friendship, freedom, and solidarity were never mere talk.

At present, a police investigative squad is at the scene establishing the circumstances of the crime. Meanwhile, information about the murder has already appeared on Nazi websites.

This is the sixth murder of an antifascist in Moscow in the past few years. In April 2006, 19-year-old Alexander Ryukhin died from multiple stab wounds before a hardcore concert in the neighborhood of the Domodedovskaya metro station. This murder was solved. Three of the assailants, activists from various ultra-rightist organizations, were sentenced to between four and a half and six and half years in prison. Two other assailants are still wanted by the police, while a sixth, Nikita Tikhonov, was arrested on November 4 on suspicion that he murdered lawyer Stanislav Markelov and journalist Anastasia Baburova, who were also involved in the antifascist movement. In March 2008, another young antifascist, Alexei Krylov, died from stab wounds. Approximately twenty neo-Nazis attacked a group of young people near Maroseika, 6. Alexei received thirty-four knife wounds and died on the spot. In October 2008, Fyodor Filatov, a leader of the antifa skinheads, was murdered near the entrance to his building. On June 28, 2009, a group of Nazis murdered antifascist Ilya Dzhaparidze. His assailants used knives and air pistols. Dzhaparidze was taken to hospital, where he died from multiple injuries.

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Filed under anti-racism, anti-fascism, racism, nationalism, fascism