Anonymous submission to MTL Counter-info
Shortly after the first bombs started falling on Ukrainian cities in the invasion by Russian forces, anti-authoritarian musicians around the world began collaborating with members of Anarchist Black Cross collectives to respond. Now, two compilation albums have been released to raise money for anarchists fighting the invasion on the front lines in Ukraine, and behind the lines in Russia.
The invasion of Ukraine by the Russian military requires Putin to direct violence on both sides of the battle lines. As his bombers and artillery shell Ukrainian cities, and his tanks roll over Ukrainian fields and wallow in the springtime mud, the Russian state maintains the discipline of war at home. The OMON and FSB target anti-war protestors. The media shut down under threat of prison for speaking the truth about the war. When conscripts refuse to participate in this imperialist war, they face threats and punishments from their officers.
In Kyiv and other cities, the Ukrainian anarchist movement- which includes many exiled Russian and Belarusian comrades- has taken up arms. They are fighting to defend their communities, their comrades, and a liberatory vision of the future of Ukraine, separate from the aspirations of the Right or of the state. Meanwhile, across Russia, our comrades take to the street whether by day in mass marches, or by night to spread the truth about the war through creative means, or to take more direct actions. One draft office has already been burned near Moscow. In the words of that heroic arsonist, “Let [the oligarchs] know that their own people hate them and we will extinguish them. Soon the earth will start to burn under their feet. Hell awaits at home”.
By supporting the fight against the invasion at both the front and behind the lines, we hope to nurture the seeds of the movement that can turn this war between nations into a revolution against the ruling class- a new spring of autonomy and solidarity sweeping across the steppe.
The first album, “The Deserter”, is fund-raising for the Anarchist Black Cross in Moscow. It will support the legal defense and general protection of those within the Russian Federation who are resisting the war and fighting back against the clampdown by the Russian state. Featuring a black poppy and the crossed-out “Z” of the anti-war movement on its cover, the album features songs about political prisoners, inflation, soldiers’ mothers, barricades, and of course, desertion.
The second album, “Mother Anarchy”, is raising money for he Anarchist Black Cross Dresden, to be directed towards their ongoing support work for the Committee of Resistance, an anarchist unit within the Territorial Defense forces, formed by anti-authoritarian activists in Ukraine. Beginning with the song “Mother Anarchy” written by Nestor Makhno, by album takes us on a journey through South African hip hop, lo-fi, German punk, ska, and Makhnovist rewrites of Cossack ballads.
The artist lineup includes such acts as Soundz of the South, Darryl Cherney, the Window Smashing Job Creators, Maske, Soho, and a folk collective formed for this project going by the pseudonym Tachanka.
The albums are being sold at the ABC Musical Solidarity Bandcamp for at least $8 each, with the option to pay more to support the cause.