This is an exhilarating and emotional time! It is, after all, a celebration of the resurrection of a much-persecuted people, the proverbial spring of an old nation which has experienced glory in the past as well as incomparable tragedy. Nothing is as wonderful as at long last establishing oneself as master of one’s own land with great hope for the duration, retrieving what was once ours but lost because of the criminality of others.
On August 19, 1991, as hardline Communists stormed the Russian capital in an attempted coup d’état, a group of American teenagers and young adults – members of Plast Ukrainian Scouting Organization – found themselves in the Ukrainian city of Lviv, just 865 miles west of Moscow. On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Ukraine’s renewed independence, one of the individuals on that trip, Adrianna Melnyk, shared her recollection of being in Ukraine during that historic and momentous period.
Biden-Zelenskyy delayed to August 31 Talks between U.S. President Joe Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy have been moved back to August 31 from August 30. Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Minister Dmytro Kuleba told reporters on August 19 that the decision was made due to an expansion of Mr. Zelenskyy’s program during his visit to Washington in late August.
As Ukraine was still reeling from the news that Berlin and Washington had reached a compromise deal concerning the Russian-German Nord Stream 2 project without Ukraine’s input, it was suddenly announced by Ukrainian officials on August 9 that Germany’s outgoing chancellor, Angela Merkel, will visit Kyiv on August 22.
The Nord Stream 2 saga is far from over. Although the agreement between the United States and Germany would allow for the physical completion of this natural gas pipeline (directly linking Russia and Germany via the Baltic Sea), its certification and especially its future operation at full capacity are far from certain.
LVIV – Olexander Roytburd, a postmodern artist and a leader of the Ukrainian “New Wave” artistic movement, died on August 8. His death was first reported by the Odesa Fine Arts Museum where Mr. Roytburd was a director since 2018. He was 59.
LVIV – An annual scholarship for journalism students at the Ukrainian Catholic University (UCU) has been established in honor of Marta Kolomayets, the first U.S. journalist and the second foreign journalist to be accredited as a correspondent in Ukraine, the university’s press office announced on August 5. The scholarship was established by Ms. Kolomayets’ brother, Andrew Kolomayets, and her friends.
As Ukraine prepares to celebrate the 30th anniversary of its renewed independence on August 24, there is unease that Russian President Vladimir Putin will use the opportunity to further antagonize a nation he believes should never have been an independent, democratic country separate from Russia.
In an indication of what the Kremlin may be being told, a pro-Moscow activist in the Donbas says that there are no internal forces capable of changing Ukraine’s direction and that it will cease to be “the anti-Russia” Vladimir Putin talks about if outside force is brought to bear on that country.