Michael MacKay, Radio Lemberg, 24.08.2018
Ukraine showed off its armed forces in a parade in Kyiv today. It was a display of military might never before seen in the century since Ukraine became independent.
Today is the 27th anniversary of Ukraine declaring its independence from the Soviet Union. But 2018 marks a century since the Ukrainian National Republic was proclaimed as independent. In most of the past one hundred years of Ukrainian statehood, foreign occupation regimes held sway over the territory. Mostly, it was the criminal regime known as the Soviet Union – but which was always Muscovy – that terrorized the Ukrainian nation. From 1991 to to 2014, Ukraine was free and independent. From 2014 to today, Muscovy is invading and partially occupying Ukraine again, in Crimea and Donbas.
Now in the fifth year of the war started by Muscovy, Ukraine held the largest military parade in its history. The crowds along Khreschatyk in Kyiv, the capital, were unprecedented. I was in attendance, and can say that I have never seen anything like it. I was on Khreschatyk on the first anniversary of independence in 1992. It was a happy day then, with most people strolling along the broad avenue that was closed to traffic, and enjoying the feeling of being released from the prison-state that was the Soviet Union. There were Ukrainian flags everywhere in 1992 – proud banners of the nation that had been forbidden only a few years before.
Ukrainian flags were in abundance this year as well. But for Independence Day 2018 there is a fierceness to the patriotism that Ukrainians are expressing. The soldiers who were marching in the parade will see service on the battlefront in Donbas, confronting the invaders of Ukraine from Muscovy. The tanks and guns and rockets on display will be deployed to defend the Ukrainian homeland from the onslaught of Putin’s army.
The Armed Forces of Ukraine shouted their official greeting and salute: Слава Україні! Героям слава! – Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the Heroes! This was the first time they have done so formally an officially since independence in 1991. The traditional comradely greeting was revived from its use by the Army of the Ukrainian National Republic, which fought for Ukraine and fought against Muscovy under Lenin. It was revived from its use by the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, which fought for Ukraine and fought against Muscovy under Stalin.
Ukraine showed the world armed forces that are capable of defending the homeland, being the vanguard of Europe, leading NATO, and defeating the foreign barbarians from Muscovy.
Happy Independence Day, Ukraine.