Editor’s Note: The young people featured in this article are either quoted by first name at their family’s request for privacy reasons or, in the case of service members active on the front line, for their safety. “The past two years have flown by. It’s hard to
‘20 Days in Mariupol’ can win an Oscar. Will it make the world care about Russian war crimes in Ukraine?
Editor’s Note: This story contains descriptions of graphic scenes. “My brain will desperately want to forget all this,” narrates journalist Mstyslav Chernov over footage he filmed of city workers adding bodies to a mass grave in Mariupol, “but the camera will not let it happen.” At the start of
Belarusian opposition working to create ‘alternative’ passport, safeguard exiles from Lukashenko regime
Editor’s Note: The full names and some of the locations of the Belarusian citizens quoted in this article have been omitted at their request to protect their identities and those of their loved ones. After participating in protests and later witnessing the defeat of the Belarusian revolution in 2020,
“We are dealing with a powerful state that is pathologically unwilling to let Ukraine go,” President Volodymyr Zelensky tells journalist Simon Shuster on a train from the front line back to Kyiv in 2022. “(Russia sees) the democracy and freedom of Ukraine as a question of their own survival.” Originally
Editor’s Note: The servicemember and volunteer quoted in this article are referred to by first name only at their request for security reasons. A day after Russia attacked Kharkiv in mid-October with drones that damaged residential buildings, several dozen local residents gathered at an undisclosed venue to attend a
Unity Day, observed on Jan. 22 in Ukraine as a state holiday, typically commemorates the 1919 unification of eastern and western Ukraine. But this year, the date garnered attention for a decree signed by President Volodymyr Zelensky relating to modern-day Russian territories that were historically populated by Ukrainians. The decree
In the midst of a full-blown agoraphobic episode, the unnamed narrator of Tanja Maljartschuk’s novel “Forgottenness,” becomes engrossed in reading old newspapers. Asked by her increasingly concerned partner what she’s looking for, she simply tells him: “I want to understand what time is.” “Time consumes everything living by
Warning: This book review contains graphic descriptions. While embedded with Ukrainian forces entering Bakhmut in December 2022, the bloodiest battle to date in the Russo-Ukrainian war, journalist Yaroslav Trofimov encountered anti-Kadyrov Chechen fighters fighting on the side of Ukraine. “It’s like Mariupol all over again,” one of the men
Ukraine’s authors should have been able to dedicate their lives to honing their craft. Instead, many of them have stepped up to contribute to the war effort and fight back against Russian aggression. Like any other member of society, Ukrainian authors have lost loved ones and colleagues to Russia’
A historian by profession who has studied war for over a decade, Olesya Khromeychuk found her research spilling over into real life when her older brother Volodymyr was killed in 2017 near Popasna in Luhansk Oblast, nearly two years into his military service. The Russian invasion of Ukraine’s Donbas
Ukrainian author Yevheniia Zavalii started celebrating Christmas on Dec. 25 back in 2014, “when the rejection of everything Russian” began in her life. Undeterred by criticism from some people that she was breaking away from the traditions of her ancestors and the church, Zavalii stood by her decision. “And this
It was at Kyiv’s Independence Square on Dec. 1, 2013, when Ukrainians gathered during the Revolution of Dignity to express their outrage over violent police crackdowns against protestors the day prior, that author Lyuba Yakimchuk’s then three-year-old son first learned the patriotic national slogan “Glory to Ukraine!” “I
When Belarusian author Hanna Komar brought the manuscript for her poetry collection “Ribwort” to a publisher in Belarus in the summer of 2021, she was told that their business would be shut down if they published her work. Komar, like thousands of her fellow Belarusians, took part in the 2020-2021
Russia's war against Ukraine did not start on Feb. 24, 2022. The illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula and the invasion of Donbas in 2014 were also not isolated incidents and had many historical precedents: Russian Tsar Peter I ordered the Baturyn Massacre in 1708 as “revenge” against Ukrainian Hetman
At a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, amidst the joyous remarks of the other presenters on the unification of the European continent, Ukrainian writer Yuri Andrukhovych conveyed his skepticism about the success of the “New Europe.” For Andrukhoych, 2009 was marked by the
A little over three months after a Russian missile strike in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk killed writer Victoria Amelina, her colleagues and readers gathered at the 30th annual Lviv BookForum festival to honor her memory. British journalist Christina Lamb moderated the event titled “Women, War, and Justice: In
Svitlana Oslavska and Anna Ilchenko embarked on a mission in 2020 to document Ukraine’s villages before they were lost to time and war. Traversing across Ukraine’s vast landscape, the sisters started speaking to people from villages about topics as diverse as the best construction method of a house
Less than a month into the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Russian shelling destroyed a popular bookstore on Kharkiv’s main street. Ukrainian writer and Kharkiv local Serhiy Zhadan uploaded a photo of the bookstore’s ruins onto social media on March 15 and asked, “Does anyone still want to talk
In early March 2023, a video surfaced online showing the execution of a Ukrainian prisoner of war. The unarmed soldier’s last words were “Slava Ukraini” – a Ukrainian national salute that means “Glory to Ukraine” – before he was shot multiple times and collapsed to his death. Ukrainian officials condemned the
For many people worldwide, Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine appeared unprecedented and unthinkable. However, for those familiar with Ukrainian history, it unfortunately represented a familiar pattern. In his latest book, "The Russo-Ukrainian War: A Return to History," the historian Serhii Plokhy explores how the myths deeply intertwined with Russian statehood
The writers' association PEN Ukraine reported on Aug. 8 that 25,000 English-language books will be donated to libraries across Ukraine, including those located near the front line or in recently-liberated territories.
Episode #19 of our weekly video podcast “This Week in Ukraine” is dedicated to Ukraine's national decommunization policy.
Back when he was a young Peace Corps volunteer, the American journalist Christopher Miller was looking to get stationed somewhere on the African continent, but instead, he was sent to the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, known then as Artemivsk. The once-prosperous industrial city in Donetsk Oblast – which has become
While Belarusian is one of the two official state languages in Belarus, the decision to speak, read, and write it can be a dangerous choice for Belarusians. Growing up, the Belarusian poet and translator Valzhyna Mort was aware of how the Belarusian language was perceived in her country. “Belarusian was
The prominent Belarusian artist Ales Pushkin died in prison in Belarus "under unclear circumstances," his wife Janina Demuch reported on July 11.
Episode #15 of our weekly video podcast “This Week in Ukraine” is dedicated to Ukrainian culture, the important role it plays in war, and why it has been a target of Russian dictators for decades.
The 90s is an overlooked period in contemporary Ukrainian literature – unlike Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine – and the setting alone makes Oksana Lutsyshyna’s award-winning novel “Ivan and Phoebe” an achievement. Now available in Nina Murray's English translation from the U.S. publisher Deep Vellum, Lutsyshyna’s novel is
UK Defense Ministry: Loyalty of Russian security forces 'key factor' to how Prigozhin's 'rebellion' plays out
The outcome of the Wagner mercenary group’s armed rebellion will partly depend on the Russian National Guard and other security forces’ loyalty to the state, the U.K. Defense Ministry wrote in its intelligence update on June 24.
Putin condemns Prigozhin's 'rebellion' as Wagner group leader claims he controls all military sites in Rostov
"All those who plotted rebellion will face inevitable punishment. The armed forces and other state institutions have received the necessary order," Putin said in a video address.
American author Elizabeth Gilbert ignited a heated online debate when she decided to postpone the release of her new novel, “The Snow Forest,” which is set in Russia. Many Ukrainians (and not only) thought that it was insensitive for a bestselling author to choose Russia as the backdrop to their
Luxembourg's Chamber of Deputies voted on a resolution on June 13 to recognize the Holodomor of 1932-1933 as a genocide against Ukrainians.
The President's Office reported that President Volodymyr Zelensky met with Rafael Grossi, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), on June 13 in Kyiv to discuss the risks posed to the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant after the Kakhovka dam disaster.