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Thoughts on Donating to Ukraine’s Frontlines

[infobox title=’Thoughts from Kyiv’]Thoughts from Kyiv is brought to you by Mychailo Wynnyckyj, Associate Professor of the Department of Sociology and Kyiv-Mohyla Business School, Director of the Doctoral School, National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy”. Below are his thoughts and writings on the situation in Ukraine. [/infobox]

This post is addressed specifically to my friends in the North American Diaspora: Since the beginning of Ukraine’s revolution, and the first deaths on Hrushevskoho St. exactly one year ago, I have tried to report and analyze current events, but have never asked anyone for financial help for any Ukrainian cause. Today, I’m changing that practice. Ukraine is at war, and Ukraine’s brave fighters on the front need your help.

As I write this post, Russian forces are again in action in the Donbas. Artillery barrages have intensified along the length of the front – near Mariupol in the south, and near Luhansk in the north, but especially in the area around the key strategic city of Donetsk. Casualty figures on both sides are rising every day. Last night over 60 Ukrainian servicemen were transported to an Odesa hospital from Donetsk airport. Locals have been donating blood in large numbers. Today, a Russian artillery shell exploded in what is left of the airport terminal building (held by Ukrainian army and Pravyy Sektor volunteers), apparently resulting in the collapse of one of the floors onto the heads of the Ukrainian defenders below. According to telephone reports from the scene none of our “cyborg” fighters were killed, but a large number have been injured.

Social media reports from the front in Ukrainian and Russian often refer to Donetsk Airport is simply as AD (“Airport Donetsk”). This is a play on words: the Russian word “ad” means “hell”.

Дмитрий Мирошниченко, a former student leader from Ukraine’s first “revolution” (October 1990), a Maidan activist, and a trusted friend has been supplying equipment to the brave fighters in “hell” since the summer.His next convoy (3 minivans) will leave Kyiv on Sunday Jan 25. Among other “goodies”, it will include rangefinders, spotting scopes, night vision goggles, kevlar helmets, drinking water, food supplies, and secure voice (encrypted) communications systems. In the past, Dmytro has transported sleeping bags, warm clothes, and foodstuffs to the front (see his FB page for photos), but thankfully, Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense has improved its logistics during the past months, so basics are now being supplied by the Ukrainian state, but the war effort needs more, and local volunteers (like our family and many others) are beginning to tap out Thank you to Roman Zyla and the Ukrainian diaspora in South Africa for helping in the past! We now need help from our Canadian and American friends…

I realize that many have given to the Ukrainian World Congress – Свiтовий Конґрес Українців, Patriot Defence: IFAK + Combat Lifesaver Training for Ukraine and this is a fantastic initiative (I attended their conference in Kyiv today – impressive!), but if you can spare another 100 bucks (or more!) for equipment that will go directly and immediately to Ukraine’s brave defenders on the front, please visit your local bank tomorrow. Here’s the bank transfer info you’ll need:

Beneficiary Acct: 4731 2171 0634 5315
Beneficiary Bank SWIFT CODE: PBANUA2X
Correspondent bank: JP MORGAN CHASE BANK, New York, USA
Correspondent bank SWIFT CODE: CHASUS33
Correspondent account: 0011000080

Incidentally, according to Russian human rights activist Elena Vasylieva, Russian losses in AD (“hell”) during the past 3 days number 382 killed and over 500 injured. That means 10 or so Russian mercenaries are taken out for each casualty from our side. Our boys are doing their best, but they need your help!

Finally, a little joke from Dmytro:
A Canadian, a Ukrainian, and a Russian woman have each just given birth. Something happens in the maternity ward, and the name tags on the newborns get mixed up. To identify her child, the Ukrainian woman shouts “Slava Ukrayini!” – one of the children suddenly puts her hands by her sides (“strunko!”), and the Ukrainian mother smiles as she picks up her daughter. The Canadian woman immediately picks up one of the other children and starts to cuddle her. The Russian woman protests: “how do you know that one is yours?” The Canadian mother answers: “when the Ukrainian shouted “Glory to Ukraine!”, mine smiled; yours filled her diaper.”

May our children smile for many years to come! Slava Ukrayini!

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