The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Putin Provoked to Up the Ante

Sep 26, 2022

The U.S. policy in Ukraine as stated has been to weaken the Russian state headed by V. Putin. It appears that the U.S. government is pushing closer to accomplishing its current goals in Ukraine on behalf of U.S. imperialism. In a series of recent decisions, Putin is reacting to the continued pressures of an unending U.S. assault. Deadly armaments, U.S. intelligence and planning are all being thrown against Russian troops in Ukraine.

In the most recent war developments, this push by U.S. leaders has reinforced the Ukrainian army to the extent that it was able to retake territory lost to Russia. This, in turn, has forced the Russian bureaucracy led by Putin, into a yet tighter military and political corner.

In a series of responses, Putin is looking to bolster his position: he has begun calling up reserve troops and has initiated voting referendums in occupied territories of Ukraine. His apparent goal is to reinforce his army while solidifying and claiming occupied areas of Ukraine as part of an expanded Russia.

Meanwhile, in much anticipated announcements, Putin has reiterated and amplified his threat to use nuclear weapons. Like other heads of state, including those in the U.S., he makes the claim that the threat alone may deter further encroachment on his positions. Like them, he claims to have the ability to “limit” nuclear intervention in the event that it is invoked.

These recent actions, after months of grueling war, have brought Putin increased problems inside of Russia. No doubt, the more the Russian population is threatened with sacrifice of life and limb, the less they may be willing to support unending conflict. Putin is also facing increased pressures within his own leading groups, including a right-wing sector that is pushing for even higher levels of military engagement.

The role U.S. imperialism plays comes at a high cost: the displacement and death of the Ukrainian population, and the death of Russian troops. What will that “freedom” look like now, in this devastated region with its battered and displaced population? Does freedom mean free to be exploited by Ukrainian oligarchs and U.S. capitalism absent Russian interference? And at what point does the war in Ukraine develop into a wider war throughout the region?

Until today, the U.S. working class has not been drafted bodily into this war, which is being conducted and led by the U.S. upper class. While the cost of continued military spending crushes the U.S. economy and places workers in a worsening condition, will the next step be another unending military intervention like Afghanistan, Iraq and so many others? Or will a nuclear war make short shrift of that?

The U.S. working class has nothing to gain in supporting this war by the very ruling class that is exploiting us here, today. It has every reason to support a revolutionary solution against all dictators and their ruling classes, be they American or Russian.