British neo-Nazis fighting in Ukraine are part of a wider scene. If we are to fight it, facts and reasoning will not be enough. This is a good time to remember that hate is on the upswing, and to think of it as a localised phenomenon is to miss the bigger picture. Consider the war that Russia is waging. After years of bloodshed, Ukraine fatigue has firmly settled in across much of the western media. Yet if we were paying closer attention to the conflict between Kiev and Moscow, we would notice an interesting element to the conflict – that the far right is involved on both sides, and that the values of these two groups pitted against each other are similar in many respects. Members of the Ukrainian and the Russian far right are willing to riddle each other with very many bullet holes over such issues as the legacy of the second world war, and who the real heroes were. Ask them about abortion, however, or feminism, or migration, or antisemitism, or LGBT rights, or human rights in general, or, for that matter, government transparency and accountability, and suddenly these mortal enemies will seem more like good buddies who had a little tiff over history and national identity but will happily join forces to oppress whoever gets in their way, should the current conflict come to an end.
March 5 / The Guardian