Kherson: The triumph of the Revolution in Ukraine


The people of Kherson celebrate the liberation of the city in the central square

By La Marx International 11/14/22

A huge triumph of the workers and the people of Ukraine has occurred on November 12, 2022 with the capture of the city of Kherson, the regional capital of southern Ukraine. The triumph of the battle of Kherson implies a heavy defeat for Putin and the world counterrevolution. The people of Ukraine celebrate the revolutionary triumph in Kherson that strengthens the struggle of all the peoples of the world, and the millions of activists who carry out a global revolutionary wave against capitalism, both the strikers in France, Germany, England, etc. such as women, and the masses mobilized in Iran against the dictatorship, as well as the peoples mobilized in Haiti, Palestine, Lebanon, etc.

The Ukrainian people's revolution confronts the interests of the group of ex-Stalinist oligarchs like Lukashenko, Yanukovych, or Nazarbayev who became obscenely rich selling the assets of the nations of the former Soviet Union to the big global capitalist corporations. At the beginning of their fight for independence, the Ukrainian people became the main challenge to the dictatorship of these privatizing oligarchs who responded to the revolution first with aggression and illegal occupation of the territories of Crimea and the Donbas in 2014. and then with the invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

With the victory of Kherson, 99% of the groups of the global left, campists, Stalinists, evasionists who refuse to support the Ukrainian people's revolution, also suffer a heavy blow. The Progressive International headed by the leaders of the United States Democratic Socialist of America (DSA ) organization, together with Yanis Varoufakis of Syriza, leaders such as English Labor Jeremy Corbyn, intellectuals such as Noam Chomsky, Jacobin Magazine, the governments of Cuba, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Lula in Brazil, the Stalinist groups or the ex-Trotskyist left of various countries that support the war criminal Putin, with hypocritical calls "for Peace." The revolutionary triumph of Kherson sends all these governments, and "progressive" groups to the dustbin of history.

The triumph of the battle of Kherson is the triumph of a revolutionary war of national liberation

Kherson was the only major city Russia had occupied in the course since the invasion. It is a mostly Russian-speaking city but its inhabitants claim to be Ukrainians, and as soon as Putin's troops entered, thousands of citizens came out to mobilize against the invasion. Putin launched a fake referendum declaring Kherson part of Russia, but made a fool of himself by losing the city just 45 days later. The triumph implies the recovery of hundreds of urban centers, and thousands of square kilometers of territory, which places Putin's troops in a defensive situation in the southern part of the country, which is key to economic development because they are cultivation areas, and access to the ports of the Black Sea.

Since August, Putin's troops began to suffer the development of a strategy of permanent attack through bombing and attacks by partisans and guerrilla combatants on the city's bridges, troop transfer nodes, supplies, warehouses, and all the supply. Thus Putin's troops suffered a slow and systematic destruction of their entire operational logistics supply system. The occupants were surrounded, without a supply of food, weapons, or provisions, which placed the more than 40,000 Putin soldiers stationed there in a desperate situation.

The artillery strikes inflicted huge losses on the invading troops, and destroyed key logistics nodes to undermine the invading military capabilities. The forces of the Ukrainian soldiers began to advance first by taking the Ordzhonikidze-Berislav highway, then by occupying the village of Dudchany, after which the expulsion of the invaders from the Dnepropetrovsk region took place. After that, the march to Kherson took place. Ukrainian troops managed to destroy the bridges that connect the two banks of the Dnipro River, cut off the supply of ammunition and supplies for the invaders.

Meanwhile, the invading troops in Kherson began to suffer from hunger, they had no way to treat the wounded, while the invader's collaborators had been suffering attacks inside the city, carried out by the partisans. The lingering of Putin's army became untenable, and the withdrawal became a matter of time as the Ukrainian forces closed in on Kherson. The shadow of the defeat at Kharkiv suffered by the invaders who fled desperately began to hover over southern Ukraine like a ghost. It was then that Putin's defense minister, Sergei Shoigu, ordered Armed Forces Commander Sergey Surovikin to withdraw troops on November 9, in a televised meeting that was a complete farce. The images show Surovikin recommending withdrawal and Shoigu accepting. The two soldiers tried to simulate making decisions, when in reality they had suffered a defeat that forced them to flee.

The Ukrainian revolution destroys the plans of Putin and the Russian oligarchy

The explanation why Putin is losing the war is the mass mobilization of the entire Ukrainian people, and the support of the world mass mobilization for their struggle. To understand Kherson's triumph, it is necessary to see the Ukrainian revolution as a whole, understanding that Kherson is part of a series of battles that have sown Putin's defeat, first, the battle of Kiev that began on February 24 and ended between on March 19 and 20, 2022, a series of battles in Hostómel, Bucha, Irpín, Brovary, Chernobyl, Ivankiv, Slavútych, Vasylkiv. This battle culminated in a resounding triumph that forced Sergei Rudskoi, Head of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff, to announce the withdrawal of troops from kyiv on March 25, 2022.

After the defeats suffered by Putin, a second stage of the war began, in which it was no longer a question of repelling the invasion, but of the expulsion of an occupation army that had been usurping and attacking the occupied areas of Ukraine for 6 years. We call this a new phase the Hour of the Partisans, because it is a wave of attacks, bombings, ambushes, and weapons organized by the masses between the months of May, June, July and August that were breaking the morale of the occupiers. , and destroying the invading army. All kinds of attacks that were gradually destroying the operational capacity of the invading forces.

To cite a few examples, the blowing up of Putin's military air base in the Pskov region, the attack on the invasion fleet in Sevastopol, the sinking of the missile cruiser Moskva (Moscow), the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, the blowing up of the railways 30 km from Melitopol, the blowing up of the air base of Putin's troops in Saki in the Crimea where 20 combat planes were destroyed, leaving 60 soldiers dead, and 100 wounded. On August 10, 2022, Belarusian Partisans attacked the Zyabrivka airfield in Belarus, and Ukrainian Partisans flew from the Kerch bridge linking Crimea to Russia on October 14. The attacks eliminated generals, officers, and soldiers of the occupying army, and also sowed terror by assassinating collaborators of the occupation, government officials, mayors,

On October 1, Putin's army collapsed in the northern part of Ukraine. Ukrainian forces took Lyman, entered Donestk and Lugansk Oblasts where they captured Hrekivka and Makiivka, advanced and took Izyum, then took Lysyschansk, advanced from the Siversky River and then took the approaches to Slovyansk. Putin's troops began a desperate and massive flight, leaving behind dozens of tanks, all kinds of weapons and ammunition, and fleeing towns, some of them of great strategic importance. After the triumphs of kyiv, Summy, the wave of attacks by the Ukrainian resistance, and the fall of Kharkiv, came the victory of Kherson on November 12.

The victory of Kherson can only be understood by looking at the overall battles that the Ukrainian people have been winning through a combination of popular organization, mobilization, courage, and military feats, which have brought an infinitely superior army to its knees in just 8 months. General Mark Milley, head of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, estimated the casualties of Putin's troops at around 100,000, which is a true military disaster. Compared to NATO casualties in Iraq, NATO had 44,000 casualties at an average of 15 casualties per day between killed and wounded in 8 years, between 2003 and 2011. Now Putin doubles that figure in just 9 months, at a average of 370 daily casualties, a horrific number that alone shows the tremendous beating that the army of the Russian oligarchs is taking in the Ukraine.

Images of the military beating Putin suffered in 8 months

The role of the partisans, and the guerrillas for freedom

In the development of this revolution, the brave people of Ukraine offer their lives in the face of Putin's cowardly and fascist attacks on the civilian population, and the massacres. Given the military inferiority of the Ukrainian people, the beating they have inflicted on Putin has been based on a high cost of human life. The US Joint Chiefs of Staff estimated the casualties in the Ukrainian troops at around 100,000, and around 40,000 dead civilians, a true horror similar to that suffered by peoples such as the Vietnamese, or the Iraqi in their respective wars in National Liberation against the United States, and NATO. But the beating that an infinitely inferior army like the Ukrainian one is inflicting on a superior one is explained by the role of the mobilization of the entire people.

Every revolution generates organizations of double power, which expresses the struggle of the oppressed, the exploited, and the direct democracy of those who make the decisions for the revolution to triumph. The Ukrainian revolution has generated the bodies of Partisans, guerrillas for freedom: peasants, women, workers, young people who take up arms fighting to liberate their land, and families that take up the European tradition of French, Italian and Yugoslav, Russian, partisans. Belarusians, Ukrainians, and Greeks against the Nazi occupation. Ukrainian Partisans emerged in the fight against Putin's illegal occupation of the Ukrainian regions in 2014, but after the kyiv battle of February-March 2022, they spread throughout the country.

Ukrainian partisans organize attacks, ambushes, carry out surveillance, and intelligence obtaining data that they send to the regular army. It is a true "Shadow Army" that maintains a close relationship with the regular army, but also carries out independent actions because it retains autonomy and independence from the government, and the Ukrainian state. This has a fundamental aspect when it comes to the arms monopoly. As reported by Ukrainian soldiers from the 93rd Mechanized Brigade operating in Donestk, they fight with whatever they capture from the occupiers.

80% of the weapons that Ukrainians have are stolen from Putin's troops, and only 20% come from NATO. The Partisans have established a barter system between the Ukrainian forces, which functions as a kind of parallel economy or informal market throughout the battlefront, where weapons or equipment captured by combat units are exchanged for the materiel they need with greater urgency. Although the soldiers admit that they are supposed to send the captured equipment to kyiv to be entered into the official records, they prefer to exchange them directly with each other on social media.

The partisans know that these weapons may not return to their hands, and prefer to handle the control, exchange, and allocation of them directly themselves. "Direct democracy" is exercised here, with the combatants themselves deciding the fate of the weapons that pass through their hands. The existence of self- organized armed groups of workers, youth, and women, who manage a large part of the existing weapons, implies a development of dual power, a "Soviet" development, as explained by the Catalan journalist and war reporter Plàcid Garcia-Planas.

This means that the ukrainian capitalist state does not have a monopoly on arms, neither does the ukrainian army, and much of the development of the war front is carried out by self-organized sections of the masses, just as it happened in the fight against the nazi occupying army. in World War 2 by French, Italian, Greek, Russian, Ukrainian and Yugoslav partisans. The mere existence of the partisans, at the forefront of a revolutionary process that is carried out in the midst of a brutal crisis of capitalism on a global scale, within the framework of a crisis, and fracture of the ruling classes in Europe, and in Russia, leaves It is clear that what is happening in the Ukraine is a revolution with all the letters that we Marxists must support with all our might.

The Catalan journalist and war reporter Plàcid Garcia-Planas explains the "Soviet" character of the Partisans in Ukraine. Click in closed captions (CC) and choose translate

It's the existence of this body of Partisans, who act as a true dual power that have turned Melitopol, a city occupied by Putin's troops, into the partisan capital of the country, and a symbol of resistance with thousands of fighters, is the signal that worries the European ruling classes, US imperialism, NATO, and the Zelensky government. That is why the victory of Kherson is also a blow for all of them, to the extent that it legitimizes and consolidates the Partisans as a force that already acts publicly, but that always constitutes a danger to the ruling classes.

Ukrainian saboteurs enter military bases that are 600 km from the border, prepare attacks, and go where the regular army cannot go. This means that Putin's troops can never stabilize, and when they think they have a firm footing, the attacks take place behind their backs, disconcerting the invaders, surprising the enemy with their operations. The attack on the Russian fleet in Sevastopol, the blowing up of the bridge that links Crimea with Russia, the elimination of generals and officers, the blowing up of railways in Russian and Belarusian territory and many more operations, are those that were defining the course of the battles.

In turn, partisan activity, and fear of Putin's attacks, has led to the spread of the phenomenon to other countries such as Georgia, Finland, and Belarus, where a process of popular armament is taking place. The pressure of the masses of the European countries, the growth of the partisans in Ukraine, and the extension of this phenomenon to the countries of the East, is the only reason why NATO supplies Ukraine with drops of arms. The change in policy of the imperialist governments has to do essentially with the objective of controlling the actions in the theater of war, and that the development of the same is under the decisions of the imperialist governments, not of the masses. We Marxists are, without a doubt, on the side of the partisans, regardless of the current state of their consciousness, because in their action of arming themselves and defending themselves against the occupation, they open the way for the workers' revolution. Our center is to defend them, support them and present our program and policy starting from the base of defending the rights,

NATO's sinister policy: The "Peace Negotiations"

NATO appears celebrating the triumph of Kherson, British Defense Minister Ben Wallace described it as "another strategic failure" for Moscow, while US President Joe Biden said that the withdrawal of Russian troops from the strategic city Kherson's Ukrainian invasion shows that Moscow has "real problems" in the war, the same thing Macron, the president of France, has said that the recovery of Kherson is "an important step". Analysts insist that the victory was the product of "NATO's delivery of arms to Ukraine."All these hypocritical imperialist bosses lie just like the campers, they are all declarations of compromise to look good to the masses who massively support Ukraine, but also to hide the sinister role of NATO in Ukraine.

NATO has refused to provide Ukraine with a ballistic shield that would have saved thousands of lives. It has stopped supplying weapons to Ukraine for months between June, July and August, allowing Putin to win battles and kill thousands of Ukrainians. When it provided weapons, NATO did so in a limited way, refusing to deliver strategic weapons, and what it delivered was only due to the pressure of the masses in the United States, and Europe, who refuse to accept a genocide in the heart of Europe. For this reason, the triumph of Kherson occurs despite NATO, and despite the attempts of imperialism to stop and control the Ukrainian revolution.

But since the Kherson triumph, US imperialism, the imperialist governments of Europe, and NATO are pressing for a "negotiated exit" and a "Peace Agreement" that ends the war in Ukraine. Imperialism and NATO leaders seek to prevent the development and deepening of the Ukrainian revolution with the aim of politically stabilizing Europe and the world situation. None of the European imperialist governments are interested in having a war with thousands of armed workers in the heart of Europe who are destroying the army of one of the most important dictatorships in the world. That is why the president of the imperialist government of France, Emanuel Macron, has also insisted since June on promoting the political "Peace Agreement" that is now deepening after the Kherson triumph.

Also the president of the imperialist government of Germany expresses his position in favor of a "negotiated exit", while his chancellor Olaf Scholz, blocked the delivery of heavy equipment by the German arms manufacturer Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) to Ukraine. The same capitalist government of Zelensky is carrying out this policy and has lent itself to this maneuver presenting at the G20 meeting ten points to reach a "Peace Agreement" . While Zelensky was presenting the proposal at the G20, Putin was launching another brutal missile attack against critical infrastructure and the defenseless and vulnerable civilian population. The campist, evasionist, and Stalinist left that is "For Peace"it shakes hands with imperialist governments, and they act as servants of its policy.

At this moment, when we are experiencing the victory of Kherson, the reformist left joins hands with North American and European imperialism to promote a peace agreement. Among these sectors is the Progressive International, and the EZLN of Mexico, which in an apparently "independent" position , capitulate to Vladimir Putin making a demagogic call for peace "against all capitalist wars." In the case of the EZLN in Mexico, its policy of capitulation to imperialism is a sign of the limits of the autonomist and anarchist currents, which have an essentially reformist program.

Today more than ever, we must consider any call for peace as a betrayal of the Ukrainian people and, at the same time, a capitulation to the policies of Zelenzky, US imperialism, the EU, Vladimir Putin and the Russian oligarchy. The capitalist and imperialist governments want the Ukrainian masses to lose at the negotiating table what they have won on the battlefield at the cost of the people's blood. We Marxists are with the partisans and we support the revolutionary war of national liberation from the beginning and we will continue to support it until its final consequences, we reject all these hypocritical calls for negotiation, we reject all these "Peace Accords", and we call on all the popular democratic organizations, the partisans to redouble the offensive to expel Putin from Ukraine without negotiating even one millimeter of the usurped land, and stolen by the invaders.

  Partisans of Ukraine explain how they act against invaders and collaborators.  Click in closed captions (CC) and choose translate

The political crisis of the army, and the Putin regime

The beating that the Ukrainian revolution is inflicting on Putin has opened up a political crisis in the military, and the political regime imposed by the olgarchy that controls the Russian Federation. The successive military beatings forced Putin to call for a recruitment of the population, but the response of the Russian people to the call was the massive rejection expressed that nobody wants to go to fight in Ukraine. Millions of Russian citizens fled on the roads to neighboring countries to avoid being caught by government recruiters.

Reports of low morale among Russian troops are growing, reports of desertion abound, messages from Russian soldiers who no longer believe Putin's speech. They were told that they were going to fight Ukraine to "defeat Nazism" and were met by millions of families, women, and children who hate and reject them because they see them as an occupying army. With each passing day the crisis of the Russian army worsens, while the rejection of the war also grows, and the isolation of the Putin regime within Russia, a government that is also isolated internationally as a result of which the masses of the world massively support Ukraine. There are also messages from soldiers who refuse to continue fighting, show insubordination and denounce that they are brutally repressed by their superiors.

The crisis due to the defeats has led the ultra-right and Russian nationalist sectors to openly criticize the general staff of the Russian army. The sector called "siloviki" headed by the heads of the Wagner mercenary command, the mercenary company created by the Putin regime that operates in Chechnya, Syria, and Africa, sectors represented by the head of the Chechen mercenaries Ramzan Kadyrov, and the financier of the Wagner Group Yevgeny Prigozhin. Kadyrov and Prigozhin attack the more traditional and conventional approach to warfare pursued by Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and the uniformed military command.

Thus, the same crisis is opening up in the political regime and the Russian army that opened up in the army and the US government in 2005 in the face of defeat in Iraq. In 2005, in the midst of the defeats in Iraq, the crisis broke out between the head of the Pentagon Donald Rumsfeld, who was fighting for a greater intervention of mercenaries and the privatization of the US army based on the mercenary group "BlackWater", confronted with the high military commanders who continued with the line of the army based on regular soldiers and popular recruitment. Now in Russia, after the successive collapses of the army in Ukraine, public tensions are worsening between the Kadyrov-Prigozhin camp, which publicly attacks the Ministry of Defense and the uniformed army for its mismanagement of the war.

The Russian soldiers are unmotivated, with hardly any supplies and in many, their commanders have abandoned them, many units lacked food rations and in many cases the food stretched out for several days. While in Russia citizens flee the country at Putin's summons, in Ukraine thousands and thousands of women and young volunteers join the ranks to fight. Women taking defense tasks alongside men and unions adding workers to territorial forces. The problem for Putin, and the Russian Armed Forces, and as it was for the Pentagon and the Bush Administration in 2003, is that they ran into the Ukraine with the most modern concept of revolution that history has to offer: Urban guerrilla warfare.

During the US imperialism's war of occupation against Iraq, a new type of guerrilla warfare was inaugurated, with its epicenter in the cities, which managed to defeat US imperialism. Based in Baghdad, Mosul, Basra, or Fallujah, this new type of "revolutionary war" with its epicenter in urban centers is different from the guerrilla warfare that characterized 20th century revolutions such as the Mexican, Chinese, and Cuban revolutions, or the Vietnamese, which were revolutions developed fundamentally in the countryside. The changes operated in the regimes of capitalist accumulation, the rise of multinationals, and global corporations in the mid-twentieth century,produced the concentration of large masses in cities, the development of large cities, and megalopolis.

The revolutions of the 21st century, unlike the 20th century, are predominantly urban. Exactly what we are seeing in Ukraine, the most modern prototype of revolution, such as the Hong Kong uprisings in 2011, the mobilizations in Greece, Occupy in the US in 2011, and Black Lives Matter in 2020, the "Chile woke up" of 2019, the "National Strike" in Colombia, the "yellow vests" in France of 2019, just to cite a few examples. They are urban revolutionary processes with elements of armed self-organization and self-defense that characterize the successive revolutionary waves.

It is no coincidence that when we mention the battles that constitute the Ukrainian revolution, we do so with the names of cities, Kharkiv, kyiv, Kherson, etc. This "urban revolutionary war" is blowing Putin's army to pieces, and opening up the crisis of the political regime. We Marxists demand the freedom of political prisoners in Russia, we are for the overthrow of Putin, the call for popular disobedience, the disobedience of soldiers to their superiors, and against the recruitment of oligarchs!

Putin and the war criminals on trial! No to the capitalist reconstruction of Ukraine!

As Putin loses the war, his oligarchic regime becomes more dangerous. Putin's response to the defeats has been to aggravate war crimes, massacres, attacks and indiscriminate bombardments of the civilian population, schools, hospitals, power plants to leave entire cities without water or electricity. All the cowardice of these oligarchs is clearly shown in their attacks on the most vulnerable, children, the elderly, families, and their bravado announcing "nuclear attacks." They are actually drowning slaps from those who are getting weaker.

Russian occupation officials are deporting children, and carrying out ethnic cleansing in the occupied territories. The war crimes of Putin and the oligarchs must be tried by Courts established by the people of Ukraine, the Partisans, and those who have fought and confronted their crimes as well as the relatives of the victims. They must be carried out by courts that are completely independent from imperialist organizations such as the UN, responsible for the massacres in Iraq, or from capitalist or imperialist governments.

Faced with serious problems of shortages, transportation of supplies, and energy, the Zelensky government took control of five companies that have ties to some of the most powerful oligarchs in the country. The government seized the shares of the motor company Motor Sich PJSC, of ​​the public oil company Ukrnafta PJSC, which belong to the oligarch Igor Kolomoisky. The authorities also seized shares in the Avtokraz truck company, the Zaporizhtransformator PJSC industrial company and the Ukrtatnafta oil refining company . The objective of these expropriations are the maintenance of the fuel supply and the restoration and repair of equipment .

The companies will now be managed by the Defense Ministry. "From today, the specified assets are managed on behalf of the State and in the interest of the entire security sector, to meet the needs of the Armed Forces and the entire defense sector," said Oleksii Reznikov, the Defense Minister. from Ukraine. The expropriation and nationalization of large companies in Ukraine in the midst of the war make it clear that the Ukrainian revolution and the reconstruction of Ukraine are incompatible with capitalism and the profits of the oligarchs, bankers, and big businessmen.

Faced with any attempt to promote a "capitalist reconstruction of Ukraine", or "Marshall Plan for Ukraine" on the part of US or European imperialism, we Marxists are in favor of an economic plan that continues the expropriation of the great Ukrainian capital, and Russian, and the imperialist Corporations. Although Russia is not an imperialist country, but a sub-metropolis with a small GDP, and which does not have companies that dominate the world economy, Russian capital must be expropriated as well as imperialist capital to compensate for the war crimes committed. by the oligarchs against Ukraine.

The social democrats, and reformists will call to trust capitalism. Can the people of Ukraine believe that Wall Street, the European " troika" made up of the European Union, the European Central Bank, or the International Monetary Fund will rebuild Ukraine? The criminal officials of these organizations destroyed Greece, and have been destroying the economies of all the poorest and most vulnerable countries. Wall Street bails out bankers and millionaires, while plunging billions of people around the world into poverty. No reconstruction will be favorable to the workers and the people of Ukraine at the hands of these swindlers, and global starvers!

We Marxists call on Ukrainian revolutionaries, Europe and the whole world to regroup and build a revolutionary organization that calls on the workers and the people of Ukraine not to have even an inch of confidence in the capitalists, nor the Corporations, whom They only care about their profits. We are for Ukraine to remain independent of NATO, of the EU, and for the partisans to have arms in their hands until there is not a single Putin soldier left in Ukraine. And then, continue with arms in hand to continue the revolution until imposing a workers' and popular government, supported by social organizations, the armed Partisans, and the unions, and imposing a Socialist Ukraine. Out with the capitalists and oligarchs who only want to do business based on the blood and the dead of the people! Long live the revolutionary triumph of Kherson! Long live the Ukrainian Revolution!

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