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You are here: Home / 2018 / On the Russian-Ukrainian conflict in the Black Sea

On the Russian-Ukrainian conflict in the Black Sea

Oleg Torbasow (the Russian Maoist Party), December 2018


As is known, the majority of the Crimea population is Russian1. The Crimea was part of Russia until 1954. After a coup d’état in Kiev in the winter of 2013/2014 the Ukrainian chauvinistic regime came to power. It is putting anticommunism and assimilation politics at the forefront, it is even glorifying Nazi collaborators (Banderites) as heroes. Some left-wing forces were ousted from parliament, and the Communists were suppressed by terror and driven underground.

It is not surprising that the people of Crimea recoiled in horror and willingly took the opportunity to return to Russia, which had a reactionary but more moderate bourgeois regime. The masses, wishing to overcome the division of the nation, welcomed the peaceful reunification of the Crimea with Russia, as it was in Germany in 19902.

The Ukrainian chauvinistic regime diligently intensifies tensions near the Russian borders. So they openly announce a policy of joining the aggressive imperialist alliance NATO3.

On March 25, 2018, Ukrainian forces hijacked the Crimean fishing seiner “Nord” with ten crew members in the neutral waters of the Azov Sea. They were holding workers in captivity on board for a week in difficult conditions, and then were holding them on the territory of Ukraine for several months. Captain Vladimir Gorbenko still cannot come back to home and remains under forged accusation. All the alleged guilt of the sailors was the transition to Russian citizenship. The State Border Service of Ukraine boasts of the capturing of 15 vessels were visiting the ports of Crimea4.

The Ukrainian chauvinistic regime is actually trying to harm the people of Crimea through a terrorist blockade.

At the same time, it’s representatives constantly talk about plans for a violent capturing of the Crimea. Here are just a some examples. General Anatoly Petrenko, Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine, said that “… This region is necessary for Ukraine: Crimea is our land, our people5, our economic potential. […] We need some patience, and we will win it back.”6 The commander of the Ukrainian Navy, Vice-Admiral Igor Voronchenko, talking about the plan to equip the naval forces with corvettes, added that “… Only with a corvette can we win the Crimea back.”7 Ukrainian lieutenant-general, foreign intelligence veteran Vasily Bogdan said that the creation of a Ukrainian naval base on the Sea of Azov would force Russia to “clear out of Donbass and Crimea.”8 Moreover, Infrastructure Minister Vladimir Omelyan spoke in a television interview even about the conquering of “Moscow and Kuban region”9.

The commander of the small armored artillery boat Berdyansk Roman Mokryak (one of the participants in the incident on November 25, 2018) told the plans of naval actions against Russia: “When the wolf pack will attack, the Russian ship will not be able to simultaneously hold six, five or even four targets. This means that at least one of these armored wolf cubs will reach the enemy. So now we will see who wins”10.

The Crimean Bridge, which connected Kerch (Crimea) with Taman in 201811, became an outstanding subject of national pride for Russians and a useful transport artery for the peoples of the region, but the subject of hatred by the nationalist regime in Kiev. Igor Mosiychuk, a parliament member in Ukraine, said that “I am sure that the Crimean Bridge must be destroyed”, “We are in a state of war! Ukrainian saboteurs, rebels from the Caucasus, aliens, the Lord God … one way or another, it will be destroyed.”12 The secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov voiced the same threat13.

Russian big capitalists are afraid of losses, they would like to integrate into the world imperialist system. Therefore, servile Russian sub-imperialism does not adequately protect the people of Crimea and the Russian population in Ukraine, but are rather indulging the Ukrainian right-nationalist regime and its Western patrons. This encourages Neo-Banderites to further incitement of national hatred and all the new adventures. Such an irresponsible policy led to the November 25 incident, and may lead to further escalation.

Early in the morning of November 25, an armored artillery boat Berdyansk (Ukraine) reported to the Russian technical observation post about the planned through pass of the Yana Kapu tugboat and the boats Nikopol and Berdyansk across the Kerch Strait only 1.5 hour later. Through pass rules require submission of an application to the Maritime Administration of the Port of Kerch in 48 and 24 hours and confirmation in 4 hours14, which was not done. The Ukrainian Navy group was informed that consequently this through pass through the strait is not allowed. However it continued to go and crossed the state border of the Russian Federation.

So the conflict started. According to the Russian authorities, “the Ukrainian Navy ships were brought to combat readiness: they take off the  guns covers and raised them at an angle of 45 degrees and directed towards the ships and boats of the Russian Federation.”15 During the day, Russian border guards fired warning shots, and in the evening they detained Ukrainian ships. The parties give different coordinates to the detention, but even two of the three points indicated by the Ukrainian side are in Russian territorial waters16.

Further events confirmed whom the incident was beneficial to. The Kiev regime immediately tried to use the incident to solicit for expansion of sanctions against Russia from NATO.

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko called on the US and the EU to increase sanctions pressure on Russia17 and even close the entrance to their ports for Russian ships18. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavel Klimkin requested19 from the European Union to abandon the Nord Stream II gas pipeline, which Russia is laying to Germany in order to reduce transportation costs. Russian suppliers and German consumers should forever pay to Kiev for the gas transfer as to the logic of the Kiev regime. And Yuri Grymchak, Deputy Minister of Ukraine for “Temporarily Occupied Territories”, asked Britain to arrange a provocation in the Kerch Strait by sending it’s reconnaissance ship there20.

The right-wing regime in the USA supported this campaign. US President Trump canceled a pre-scheduled meeting with Russian President Putin at the G-20 summit in Argentina. There is a bill against Russia introduced to the US Congress21. As imperialists of NATO have already dreamed a military base in the Sea of Azov, promised by their ultra-right minions in Kiev!

The incident is happily used by a gang of bourgeois scribblers to incite allegedly “patriotic” but actually chauvinistic and militaristic sentiments. This is very handy on the eve of the upcoming presidential elections.

To curb these expansionist fantasies and get the Ukrainian regime to end its adventurous and chauvinistic policies is for the interests of the workers and the peoples of the entire region, either Russian or Ukrainian or Crimean Tatar, as well as the whole world.

Down with Russian imperialism and Ukrainian expansionism! NATO, hands away from the Crimea!

Oleg Torbasow (the Russian Maoist Party)

1 The Russians consist 65 percent, Ukrainiana consist 15 percent (80 percent among them are Russian-speaking), Tatars consists 10 percent (2014). The mother-tongue for 84 percent is Russian.

2 See MLPD Program, B.10.

3 Parliament set the joining NATO as the foreign politics target of Ukraine on July 8, 2017 (


5 This is not so, as shown above.






11 The rail link will open in 2019.

12 and




16 See (on the map, the boundary of territorial waters is incorrect, which is easy to check).







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