Socialist Alliance condemns the Russian attack on Ukraine. The war violates international law and is a catastrophe for people in both countries. We recognise the right of the Ukrainian people to self-determination free from all foreign interference. As a consequence we support:
The role of NATO & the US
The Russian government is responsible for this terrible act of war with its appalling impact on human life and the environment, including the potential horror of widespread radioactive contamination.
While the relentless drive by the United States to expand NATO up to Russia’s border in order to encircle it militarily significantly frames the conflict, the Russian invasion has been a propaganda gift for Western imperialism, allowing the US and its allies to take advantage of Eastern European fears about the ambitions of Putin’s Russia in order boost military spending and adopt an even more hostile posture. The same approach is being applied to China through AUKUS and the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue.
In both cases this has nothing to do with defending a "rules based international order" or supporting democratic transformation in Russia or China as its proponents hypocritically claim, and everything to do with blocking competition and preserving profits. This aggressive "containment" policy actually has the consequence of reinforcing authoritarian nationalist politics in both Russia and China. The following measures are needed to contribute to a lasting peace:
The assertion by Russian President Vladimir Putin that the Ukrainian nation does not exist but was an invention of the Soviet Union is absurd. His suggestion that there would be military consequences for Finland and Sweden if they joined NATO and reference to nuclear conflict was extremely inflammatory.
Putin does not represent the interests of the working people of Russia. His political project is based on authoritarianism, social conservatism and Russian chauvinism. He represents the interests of Russia’s capitalist oligarchs and their desire to carve out their own sphere of influence in competition with Western capitalism. This project has no progressive or anti-imperialist role. Instead, Putin’s actions make it harder to build a peaceful and more just world:
Finally, we insist that while refugees from this war should immediately be made welcome in Australia, this must be in addition to the existing humanitarian intake and not at the expense of refugees from other places.
[The Socialist Alliance National Executive released this statement on March 1 and was amended by the Socialist Alliance National Council on September 18.]