The Free Territory

Introduction: The Free Territory was a kind of experiment in anarchy. It no longer exists. Aside from learning facts about the Free Territory, it behooves you to think about why such a place no longer exists.

Flag: There is no known flag from the Free Territory, but a common symbol for anarchy is:
"Circle-A" anarchy symbol
"Circle-A" anarchy symbol

Location of Free Territory
Location of Free Territory

Approximate location of the Free Territory

Location of Ukraine
Location of Ukraine

Background: The period of time when the Free Territory was established was a very unstable time for Russia and its surrounding areas. Revolutions were happening all around.

The Free Territory (January 1919 - 1921) was the territory controlled by the Revolutionary Insurrectionary Army of Nestor Makhno external image makhno_seul.jpg. He and his followers tried to create an anarchic society in part of the territory of modern Ukraine during the Ukrainian Revolution.

The military role Makhno adopted was organizational. He issued five main points:
1. suspicion of all political parties
2. rejection of all dictatorships (mainly those organizing over people)
3. elimination of any concept of government
4. rejection of any "transitory period" of dictatorships
5. self-management of all workers
The color that this anarchist group used to distinguish itself from other revolutionary groups was black.

The government in Petrograd, Russia, was friendly with Makhno in the beginning. At first the Russian government thought about allowing an independent area for Makhno's experiment. But after Makhno kept switching sides, they viewed the Makhnovists as being unreliable. The government in Petrograd thought that the Free Territory was working more like a dictatorship than a "free territory." The government in Petrograd said that Makhno himself had refused to provide food for men who worked on trains and that a special section of the Makhnovist constitution allowed secret executions and torture.

Whether all of this was true or not is difficult to say, but the Free Territory was eventually crushed by the stronger government in Russia.

Eastern Europe, bordering the Black Sea, between Poland, Romania, and Moldova in the west and Russia in the east. The Free Territory was in the south-eastern part of the country.

Population: Unknown.

Ethnic groups (2001): Ukrainian 77.8%, Russian 17.3%, Belarusian 0.6%, Moldovan 0.5%, Crimean Tatar 0.5%, Bulgarian 0.4%, Hungarian 0.3%, Romanian 0.3%, Polish 0.3%, Jewish 0.2%, other 1.8%

Religions: Ukrainian Orthodox - Kyiv Patriarchate 50.4%, Ukrainian Orthodox - Moscow Patriarchate 26.1%, Ukrainian Greek Catholic 8%, Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox 7.2%, Roman Catholic 2.2%, Protestant 2.2%, Jewish 0.6%, other 3.2% (2006 est.)
Languages: Ukranian, Russian

Literacy (2001): definition: age 15 and over can read and writetotal population: 99.4%male: 99.7%female: 99.2% (2001 census)

Official Government Name: Vilna Teritoriya



Federalism: No
Democracy: Unknown

Administrative Divisions: Unknown

Independence: 1918

Constitution: Existed, but contents are unknown.

Suffrage: Unknown

Executive Branch -- President Nestor Makhno

Legislative Branch -- Unknown

Judicial Branch -- Unknown

Problems: The state no longer exists.