Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is an unprovoked act of aggression, the deed of an authoritarian regime and revanchist imperial power seeking to subjugate by force a weaker neighbor. It is the waging of war that can only result in needless death and devastation on a massive scale.
The justifications offered by the Russian despot Vladimir Putin for this flagrant violation of international law – such as the offensive claim that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, a Jew whose grandfather was wounded twice while fighting in the Red Army against the Nazis and whose three great uncles were murdered in the Shoah, is a “neo-Nazi” – are nothing more than fantastical propaganda.
In this moment of their trial, we stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine and its working class. We join with them in saying: this attack on the independent and sovereign nation of Ukraine must end, and Russian armed forces must immediately withdraw from all Ukrainian territory. Our internationalist duty as democratic socialists and anti-imperialists requires that we make this call our first and primary demand. If Russian peace and democracy activists can risk their freedom and safety by protesting the invasion on the streets of St. Petersburg, Moscow and other Russian cities, there is no excuse for those us in relative safety from doing our best to ensure that this war of aggression does not prevail.
Diplomatic negotiations and meaningful progress toward a lasting peace cannot take place at the point of a gun, so powerful pressure must be brought to bear against the Russian regime to end its invasion. To this end, we support the levying of stringent diplomatic and economic sanctions that target the Russian state and the Russian oligarchic elite who are responsible for this war of aggression. We endorse the statements of the four DSA members of the House of Representatives and of Senator Bernie Sanders in favor of such sanctions, as well as their calls for the U.S. and NATO to accept refugees from the fighting in Ukraine. With these comrades, we would oppose military intervention by the U.S. or other NATO nations inside Ukraine, were such a step to be seriously contemplated, as a dangerous escalation which could lead to world war.
It is precisely because we oppose outside military intervention that we have an obligation to advocate for other means to compel a Russian withdrawal from Ukraine, and sanctions are the only other means that could conceivably produce such a result. In our view, to oppose sanctions is to surrender to the Russian invasion, a betrayal of the Ukrainian people and working class. For these reasons, we repudiate completely the statement of the DSA International Committee made immediately prior to the invasion, which contained not a single word critical of Russia’s unmistakable preparations for its war of aggression, and its tweets after the start of the invasion, which have opposed the levying of sanctions. These declarations are a perversion of true internationalism, an ‘anti-imperialism’ of fools.
In this moment of international crisis, we are moved by the courageous Ukrainians defending their homeland against much stronger Russian armed forces and by the courageous Russians demonstrating against the war of aggression undertaken by the dictatorial regime which rules their nation. Their example motivates us to act on their behalf.
2/26/2022 10:00:44 pm
Note; Just released new statement by DSA.
edward William Collins
2/28/2022 11:11:11 am
I concur with the North Star statement. If it were up to me, I would include something supporting the democratic nations providing the heroic Ukrainian people with the means to defend them selves but with or without such an additional proviso, I support the statement.
3/5/2022 10:48:42 am
Why is there no NorthStar comment regarding Russian aggression as a result of "US Imperialism" ? This is another aspect of the DSA statement that should have been critiqued by NorthStar; The far-left loves to conflate, which makes it difficult to support anything DSA says!! More poor far left messaging. Has it occurred to ANYONE in the DSA that Zelenskyy wants to further Democracy in his own country and this is the real motive of Putin's aggression? Not really poor messaging, but more bad DSA ideas!!
" ...we support the levying of stringent diplomatic and economic sanctions that target the Russian state and the Russian oligarchic elite who are responsible for this war of aggression. We endorse the statements of the four DSA members of the House of Representatives and of Senator Bernie Sanders in favor of such sanctions, as well as their calls for the U.S. and NATO to accept refugees from the fighting in Ukraine. With these comrades, we would oppose military intervention by the U.S. or other NATO nations inside Ukraine, were such a step to be seriously contemplated, as a dangerous escalation which could lead to world war.
2/27/2022 09:43:10 pm
It can be wrapped up in any rhetorical dressing that suits its purveyors, but the refusal to support targeted sanctions against the Russian state and its oligarchic elite -- in a situation where a military intervention is off table -- is not very well disguised support for the imperialist invasion of Ukraine, and the far right autocratic regime which is undertaking it.
2/28/2022 12:03:17 am
3/12/2022 05:52:09 pm
Of course, sanctions are a form of coercion; there wouldn't be any reason to levy them if they were not. To refuse to use sanctions in a situation in which military intervention has been ruled out is to engage in what is unilateral disarmament in the face of an imperialist invasion. There will be some harm to ordinary Russians from sanctions, even ones that target the Russian state and the oligarchy: that is unavoidable. But compare that harm to what the Russian army is doing to Ukranians, with war crimes and atrocities, the bombing of hospitals, schools and residential neighborhoods, attacks of nuclear energy facilities, all resulting in so much unnecessary death and devastation. That socialists would advocate for unilateral disarmament in the face of such criminal behavior is a betrayal of internationalism.
2/28/2022 12:59:27 pm
Unprovoked? Where do I get what y'all have been smoking?
3/17/2022 12:27:06 pm
Im with Leo
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