Interviews & Opinions

Mother of a Soldier – Protest in Chernivtsi Oblast, Western Ukraine, on June 20, 2014

Translated from Ukrainian by Valentina Lisitsa (@ValLisitsa) / Editing by Gleb Bazov

Video: Mother of a Soldier; Protest Blocking the Highway Near Mahala (Multi-Language Subs)

Important Note: To activate subtitles, click on the (cc) button in the dashboard at the bottom of the video, then, in the Captions menu, select English, French, German or Spanish

Map: Mahala, Chernivtsi Oblast, Western Ukraine (Wikipedia Entry)

Mother of a Soldier: I am standing here for my son. My son was conscripted on March 26th. I don’t know his whereabouts. I am asking him “Sonny, are you ok?” He says: “I am ok”. I ask: “Where are you?” His only reply is – “in Ukraine, Mom, on the border”. That’s all, nobody tells me anything.

Why, I ask, why did they take our children there? Who needs them there, who? There are different people – some will not say anything, others ask our boys: “Why did you come here? You are a Banderovets!” Why do we send our kids there, if they are mocked as “Banderovtsy”? Why? Why the grown up able-bodied men run to hide here, sending our kids instead?

Why? Why did they make “Maidan”?  From this very Maidan everything started. This Maidan they made … And they were paid on Maidan. They were paid to be there. Everything was paid for.

00:55 But here, our kids don’t have even the most basic conditions. Not even drinking water. Can you imagine? Buying water there … How can this be happening? What kind of a country is it? Nobody is thinking of anything.

In Supreme Rada [Ukrainian parliament], they just sit around and every day they “debate certain questions”. Every day. What kind of questions? Empty air. While we are standing here – mothers, wives, children. Not knowing anything.

I don’t know anything. Son says that “everything is Ok,” but I don’t know. He left behind his child. The little boy is just 9 years old. He keeps asking “Mama, where is my daddy?”

Where is his daddy? How is it possible? How is it possible to heap so much abuse on these
people? I am sick and tired. I am sick and tired of watching the lies [on TV]. They say “we are winning” but men come and take my son to the East.

How long will they continue to lie to us? This is not a country anymore. They holler: “We are building a new Ukraine!” What kind of Ukraine are we building now? How many years we lived in peace! Nobody cared to ask if you were Romanian, Moldovan, Russian, or Ukrainian.

Not anymore: “The language, it can’t be Russian,” can’t be this, that …
And who are we now? I will tell you – we are now nationalists, aren’t we? How can they be allowed to divide people like this? They did it on purpose. We know who did this, whose team it was …

Interviewer: Did anyone from local authorities visit you [the protesters], what did they say to you?

Mother of a Soldier: I was here yesterday only in the evening. Today nobody came. Only us. Did a mayor come out to us? No. At least if someone were to come and ask us what we want. But no, not at all.

What should we do, to go to the Supreme Rada? These women are at the end of their wits. They stay here, sleep on the bare pavement. They must – because of our children who are there. We can’t go on like this.

We can’t stand this TV, we can’t listen to it. It is full of lies! Why did they do it? Why did they divide people like this? Why did they do the Maidan? Why did they pay big money there? And here – they don’t pay anything.

Did anyone from Maidan come here? They said they are fighting for Ukraine there. Why wouldn’t they stand with us here to defend our children? Nobody. Nobody.


5 thoughts on “Mother of a Soldier – Protest in Chernivtsi Oblast, Western Ukraine, on June 20, 2014

  1. Reblogged this on Augmented Ether and commented:
    A mother in western Ukraine asks why her son was drafted!


    Posted by Augmented Ether | Jul 19, 2014, 07:46
  2. This is teaching me 2 points:

    * some people in Western Ukraine are very aware of the political buyout/corruption of their state – asking deep questions, knowing alot. This can be a spark for a TRUE MAIDAN aka DEMOCRATIC REVOLUTION in Ukraine.

    * people in the Western Ukraine are suffering too, not ‘only’ people in the Eastern Ukraine. Fascism and War are tearing the people apart on BOTH sides. I hope, that this will backfire on the Poro-Yazi-US/EU-Club sooner or later in a collective and conscious uprising.


    Posted by Historian | Jul 19, 2014, 09:43
  3. Reblogged this on asidewrite and commented:
    This material resonates.

    The critical reality of a grandmother’s observations includes

    Civilian call-up for a war they don’t want.
    Errors of reductionist labels and slogans- ‘Bandarovsky’ 1.
    Govts. -that sit around debating hot air
    A mother who misses her son.
    A child who asks where his father is.
    Media lies
    Govt propaganda.

    Her comment…. “What kind of Ukraine are we building now? How many years we lived in peace! Nobody cared to ask if you were Romanian, Moldovan, Russian, or Ukrainian.”……could be said by a Syrian grandmother, where sectarian divisions have been introduced in the vilest way where it never mattered if you were Sunni, Shia, Druze, Alawite -many people didn’t care.


    Posted by sedwith | Jul 19, 2014, 10:16
  4. I am asking him “Sonny, are you ok?” He says: “I am ok”. I ask: “Where are you?” His only reply is – “in Ukraine, Mom, on the border”. That’s all

    I recall reading recently that the Ukrainians were concealing true casualty figures by keeping a pile of dead soldiers mobile phones and sending non committal texts like these whenever their families tried to make contact.

    I hope this lady is not a victim of such a cruel deception.

    Wish I could find the reference again.


    Posted by Derek | Jul 19, 2014, 11:17
    • Yup, @Derek, quite possible, like a digital version of the prewritten letters from Nazi-Extermination Camps to deceive relatives in believing the senders were still alife.

      I have heard the rumors, that the wounded are buried with the dead in mass graves to conceal the devastating large losses.


      Posted by Historian | Jul 20, 2014, 02:01

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