Moscow’s moves to seize control of the surface of the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov have attracted concern not only in Ukraine but in the capitals of Ukraine’s supporters. However, Russia’s illegal moves to control a large part of the Ukrainian shelf not only there but in the Black Sea have not – even though they may prove more fateful. After Vladimir Putin’s Anschluss of Crimea, Moscow took control of approximately two-thirds of Ukraine’s continental shelf, according to the Ukrainian government’s State Service for Geology and Natural Resources. Now, it is moving to take control of even more (qha.com.ua/ru/ekonomika/rf-nezakonno-kontroliruet-bolshuyu-chast-ukrainskogo-shelfa-chernogo-i-azovskogo-morei/194754/ and ukranews.com/news/578796-gosgeologyy-rasskazaly-o-utverzhdennykh-zapasakh-gaza-na-podkontrolnykh-ukrayne-uchastkakh). Like the occupation, the continuing war in the Donbas and earlier seizures of portions of Ukraine’s continental shelf, these latest moves are completely illegal and threaten to take away from Ukraine approximately 37 billion cubic meters of natural gas over all and about 10 billion in the Sea of Azov alone.
Moldovan Defense Minister Eugen Sturza said that Russian forces, without identifying markers, have carried out massive maneuvers involving “the forcing of the Dniestr River,” a move that disqualifies Moscow as a peacekeeper in his country and that disturbingly recalls its use of such “little green men” in Ukraine. On Facebook, Mr. Sturza said that “this kind of exercise in the security zone with armed equipment without numbers is a provocation that undermines the basis of the Russian side as a peacekeeping mission. It is extremely difficult to explain how [such moves] by little green men are about peacekeeping” (facebook.com/eugen.sturza.eu/posts/1635169666610157). The OSCE mission in Moldova also has expressed concern about these exercises, especially because the Russian side refused to allow OSCE monitors to visit the Transdniestrian region where these maneuvers took place (charter97.org/ru/news/2018/8/16/301671/). August, of course, is a prime time for military exercises, but these are especially disturbing because of their echoes of the way Moscow moved against Ukraine in 2014 and because of the media campaign that Russian outlets have launched against Chisinau in recent days – a media campaign that also resembles that used four years ago.
The following statement was released by the Ukrainian World Congress on August 22. As Ukrainians worldwide unite in spirit on August 24 to commemorate the 27th anniversary of the reestablishment of the Ukrainian state, we celebrate achievements while reflecting on the challenges facing the Ukrainian people on the road to full integration into the Euro-Atlantic community. August 24, 1991, marked the beginning of the consolidation of the independence of Ukraine and its development into a democratic, economically viable and prosperous state that would always secure the right of future generations of Ukrainians to live freely on their own land and be a strong member of the international community upholding the values of all independent states. In 2018, Ukrainians can continue to take pride in their accomplishments, primarily the national reform agenda which is moving the country forward domestically while building strong international relations. The challenges are great.
CINCINNATI, Ohio – U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) on August 24 issued a statement on the 27th anniversary of Ukrainian independence from the Soviet Union, reiterating his longstanding support for the independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine. The text of the statement reads:
“I wish the brave people of Ukraine a joyous national day. This is an important day to commemorate the proud history of the Ukrainian people. “The United States stands firmly with the Ukrainian government as they strive to fulfill the promises of the Revolution of Dignity. As Russia continues to illegally occupy Crimea and fuel the devastating war in eastern Ukraine, the United States and our allies must increase both our pressure on Russia and our support for Ukraine’s capacity to defend itself against this aggression.
Following is a statement from Patriot Defence, issued on August 24, on the occasion of Ukraine’s Independence Day. For more information on this humanitarian initiative – whose mission “is to systematically develop tactical medicine and emergency medical care in Ukraine by offering training in new methods, perfecting skills and improving medical bases which when taken together will create a qualitative new Ukrainian medical system” – readers may visit the website www.patriotdefence.org.)
Today is the 27th anniversary of Ukraine’s independence. That our country with a thousand-year history is thought to be so young, is a paradox. A wealthy country, with its ups and downs, heroes and enemies. And yet, its history is still in the making.
Sixty-five years ago Dr. Raphael Lemkin – the “father of the United Nations Genocide Convention” – described the Great Famine of 1932-1933 in Soviet Ukraine as a genocide. A plaque to be unveiled in New York City at the Ukrainian Institute of America (UIA) on September 20 will be the first English, Ukrainian, Yiddish and Hebrew historical marker in the world.
The plaque is a project of the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Foundation, working in conjunction with the UIA. Our total budget is $15,000. To date we have raised $10,300. So, the UCCLF needs your help to complete this project.
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Alex Popovich (men’s soccer, class of 1969) is among the athletes named to the 2018 University of Bridgeport Athletics Hall of Fame Class. The announcement was made on August 3 by University of Bridgeport Director of Athletics Anthony Vitti.
Other members of the University of Bridgeport Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2018 are: Linda Velaj (women’s soccer, class of 2010), Wolfgang Woischke (men’s soccer, class of 1972) and the 2013 Women’s Gymnastics Team. Jeff Bieder (class of 1968) will receive the sixth Fran Bacon Award for Lifetime Achievement in Coaching and Paul Antinozzi will be honored with the Purple Knight Shield of Merit Award. Mr. Popovich helped propel the University of Bridgeport men’s soccer team to NCAA appearances in 1966 and 1967, as he earned All-America and All-New England League plus All-New England Coaches Team honors.
During his stellar UB career, Mr. Popovich netted 31 goals and chipped in eight assists for a total of 70 points which puts him seventh on the all-time goals scored list and number 10 in all-time points.
CHICAGO – Father Andrij Hlabse, SJ, a Ukrainian Catholic from Parma, Ohio, was ordained a Jesuit priest on July 15, following nearly a decade of Jesuit formation. The ordination was performed according to the Byzantine Rite and took place at St. Josaphat Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in Parma. “Thanks, in the first place, are owed to God — who made me, called me and, above all, sustained me with his faithful love through the various stages of our lengthy formation,” said Father Hlabse. “God has been utterly faithful to the trust I have placed in him walking this path on which he called me.”
Father Hlabse grew up in Brecksville, Ohio, and his family attended St.
TORONTO – In September, Anatolii Babinskii and Maria Ivaniv will be taking up residence in the Sheptytsky Institute in pursuit of their Ph.D. programs.
Mr. Babinskii of the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv has received a generous research grant from the Catholic Near East Welfare Association. He is the former editor of Patriarkhat magazine, as well as the magazine published by the Religious Information Service of Ukraine. He has served as vice-president at Unum Omnes, an international Catholic lay organization. He will be joined by his wife, Svitlana, and children Luka and Yustyna, who will be residing with him in Windle House, the new home of the Sheptytsky Institute.
Mr. Babinskii, whose dissertation on the Ukrainian Patriarchal Movement will be defended at the Ukrainian Catholic University, will be a research fellow at the institute as he works in several North American archives. Ms. Ivaniv is a graduate of the University of Leuven in Belgium and a lecturer at the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv.
KERHONKSON, N.Y. – Discover Your Heritage Camp was held at Soyuzivka on July 15-21, with 38 campers age 8-15 from Canada and the United States participating. The U.S. campers hailed from California, Connecticut, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York. This well-supervised sleepover camp is filled with Ukrainian traditions, crafts, music, hiking, swimming, sports, games and bonfires. This year’s cultural theme was traditions of the Ukrainian Christmas cycle, starting with St. Andrew’s Eve and the feast day of St.