According to a research group, Russia’s attack on Ukraine has fueled a flurry of activity by European far-right militia leaders, who have used the Internet to raise funds, recruit fighters and plan their exits. frontline to confront the country’s invaders, according to a research group.
In recent days, militia leaders in France, Finland and Ukraine have posted statements calling on their supporters to join the fight to defend Ukraine from Russian aggression. The posts have been located and translated by SITE Intelligence Group, a private organization dedicated to tracking extremist groups.
Rita Katz, director of SITE, says that many far-right nationalist and neo-Nazi groups across Europe and North America have expressed strong support for Ukraine, including seeking to join the paramilitary units to fight Russia.
The motivation to go to Ukraine, she said, was to get combat training. It is also ideologically driven, she added, because these far-right groups see the war against Russia as a war against communism, cling to historical narratives of World War II, and relate unites present-day Russia and its president, Vladimir V. Putin, with the former Soviet Union.
Ali Soufan, head of the Soufan Group, which has been documenting the conflict for years, said: “The instability in Ukraine offers white supremacist extremists the same training opportunities as instability in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. in eastern Ukraine has emerged as an international center of white supremacy.
“Civil wars and uprisings often attract outside volunteers; some may initially join for humanitarian purposes but still exacerbate and prolong conflict and violence,” he said in a statement to the Times.
Mobilizing far-right groups could clearly be problematic for the Ukrainian government, prompting Putin to portray Ukraine as a fascist country and falsely claim to be waging war against the Nazis. government control in Kyiv. In fact, Ukraine has a democratically elected government and its president, Volodymyr Zelensky, is Jewish.
Some operations appear to be centered on the Azov Battalion, a unit of the Ukrainian National Guard that has attracted far-right fighters from around the world, SITE said. The group regrouped after Russia’s first invasion of Ukraine in 2014 and took action against pro-Russian forces.
In a statement, posted this week on the messaging app Telegram, just before the full-blown Russian invasion Ukrainea leader of the political wing of the Azov Battalion called for “general mobilization” of the group, and directed volunteers to online recruitment sources.
Earlier this week, Carpathian Sicha group of Ukrainians, posted donation information on their Telegram channel, seeking money from their followers through PayPal, as well as in cryptocurrencies Bitcoin, Ethereum and Tron.
Similar information was shared on several Finnish and French far-right websites, among them “OC”, a white nationalist website. This week, the group posted a pro-Ukrainian statement on its Telegram channel, encouraging their subscribers to do so donations to the Carpathian Sich. A later post said, “Just like the Soviet Union, Putin will be defeated”, by linking “French nationalists” to the people of Ukraine. “
Telegram users following neo-Nazi party extremism and white supremacy from Finland also encouraged Finnish compatriots to join the war with the Ukrainians, SITE reported. One post said, “It is the Finns’ age-old mission to wage war against the Russians.”
The post on SITE said: “Russia always persecutes us, and that snake won’t let go until it hangs its head.” “The best solution would be to create a collective surprise and knock Moscow out of the Stone Age.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/25/world/europe/militias-russia-ukraine.html Far-right militias in Europe plan to confront Russian forces