For our fallen comrades in Bakhmut

This is the flower of the partisan 
O bella ciao, bella ciao, bella ciao ciao ciao 
This is the flower of the partisan 
Who died for freedom 

Some tragic losses at the end of last month, amongst the many tragic losses of the brutal Russian war in Ukraine (and the many other tragic losses in conflicts everywhere, from Sudan to Myanmar.

Cooper "Harris" Andrews

Independent journalist Jake Hanrahan tweeted news of Andrews’ death on Sunday, including a selfie that Andrews had sent a friend showing him holding a sledgehammer along with the message: “If I am martyred, remember me with my hammer.”

Andrews and two others were killed after being ambushed by Russian forces while they were defending Ukrainians being evacuated from Bakhmut, according to an Instagram post from the Popular Front, a grassroots media organization that Hanrahan runs.

“Cooper was a former US Marine and lifelong leftist organizer,” the Instagram post says. “He was a man of action. He didn’t scream into the void through his keyboard, he did real life.”

The Instagram post also said that Andrews served as a volunteer firefighter in Texas, Colorado, and Idaho when those states battled wildfires, and he also taught self-defense classes.

After initially joining Ukraine’s International Legion, Andrews joined another group, The Black Headquarter, which posted a separate tribute to him on Instagram calling him “a brave fighter and a reliable comrade.”
Via Crimethinc: You can read about Cooper’s motivations in his own words here and consult a eulogy from his comrades here.

Dmitry Petrov

I am a member of the Militant Organisation of Anarcho-Communists (BOAC), and will remain so after my death. BOAC is our brainchild, born out of a belief in organised struggle. We managed to lead it across national borders.

I tried my best to contribute to defeating the dictatorship and to the social revolution...

As an anarchist, a revolutionary and a Russian I found it necessary to take part in the armed repulse of the Ukrainian people to Putin’s occupiers. I did it for justice, to defend Ukrainian society and to free my country, Russia, from oppression. For all the people who have been deprived of their dignity and the opportunity to breathe freely by the nefarious totalitarian system created in Russia and Belarus.

Another important meaning of the participation in this war is to establish internationalism by our example. In the days when deadly imperialism awakens in response a wave of nationalism and contempt for the Russians, I assert in word and deed: there are no bad nations. All nations have one misfortune – greedy and power-hungry rulers. [Original source:,]
In an interview published in December 2017, Dmitry said “In general, almost everything that is created by human hands is the fruit of the labor of countless people.” In that spirit, we do not seek to hold Dmitry up as an exemplary figure. Rather, his life affords us a glimpse into the lives of many Russian anarchists, illuminating their courage and the challenges they have faced.

Above all, Dmitry’s life is a testament to how much is possible even in the most difficult conditions. Under a brutal dictatorship, faced with mounting adversity, he repeatedly found ways to continue organizing and fighting for the future he desired...

Yet as authoritarianism rises around the world and war spreads from Syria to Ukraine, from Ukraine to Sudan, we too may have to answer the questions that Dmitry confronted when Russia invaded the country to which he had fled. If we are to be prepared for that situation—especially if we want to propose other answers to those questions—we need to study what has taken place in Russia. It may be that there is still time for things to turn out differently in other parts of the world, if we act boldly enough—but time is growing tight.
Also read: An interview from last April by Alexis Daloumis (@AlexisDaloumis).

Finbar Cafferkey

Finbar Cafferkey (40s), a native of Achill Island, Co Mayo, was a military volunteer and had recently travelled to Ukraine to assist local forces. Mr Cafferkey had previous combat experience in Syria where he assisted Kurdish militia in their battle against Islamic State. 

Via Crimethinc: You can learn about Finbar’s lifelong activism here, read an interview with him here, and listen to a song of his here. 
His comrade, Philip O'Keefe, another veteran of the fight against Daesh in NE Syria, was arrested by UK counter-terrorism police when he attempted to cross the UK to inform Cafferkey's kin of his death. 
A musical tribute by Emmet Doyle:


Anonymous said…
Alexis Castillo should also be honored as having lost his life in that senseless conflict.

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