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A year of courage, caring, pain, hope, endurance and above all a year of unity (1)

From dancers in Kyiv I came to hear how they tried to work together to keep the spirit high up. Next to the dance training, they also got some military training. As soldiers, they had to defend their city already three times, having exchanged their point shoes in riffles defending their city.

A year ago, on this day, at about seven in the morning, president Zelensky addressed the people of Ukraine with a short statement. It lasted only 67 seconds. It contained the two most important things, then and now.

That Russia started a full-scale war against us. And that we are strong. We are ready for anything. We will defeat everyone. Because we are Ukraine!

said the president now one year later. Who would have thought that actor who played a president had to become a real war president, holding everyone in line with the Ukrainian thought.

America for several weeks had warned of something we could not believe would happen. There was “war language”, but everyone knew that war would not at all bring solutions, except many deaths.

February 24, 2022 began. The longest day of our lives. The hardest day of our modern history. We woke up early and haven’t fallen asleep since.

said the president.

Some people were afraid, some were shocked, some did not know what to say, but everyone felt what to do. There were traffic jams on the roads, but many people were going to get weapons. Queues were forming. Some people stood at the borders, but many went to military registration and enlistment offices, and territorial defense units.

From regions where there had been many pro-Russian people, their idea swiftly shifted as the movements of the Russians went deeper into the country, making unnecessary civilian victims. All those beautiful Russian holiday resorts in the south of Ukraine were ruined by those who suddenly had become monsters.

As the president said in his speech the population did not raise the white flag. Many more, who previously would not have anything against Russians, who are really their brothers, now began to defend the blue and yellow, and started to detest those who invaded their country. They were not afraid, and even when Russia did everything to undermine the spirit of the Ukrainians, they did not break down and did not surrender.

The symbol of this was the border guards of Zmiinyi Island and the route they told the Russian warship.

affirms the president, who continued:

Our faith has grown stronger. Our morale has been reinforced. We endured the first day of a full-scale war. We didn’t know what would happen tomorrow, but we realised for sure: every tomorrow is worth fighting for!

And we fought. And we fiercely fought for every day. And we endured the second day. And then – the third. Three days that we were predicted to last. They threatened that in 72 hours we would not exist. But we survived the fourth day. And then the fifth. And today we have been standing for exactly one year. And we still know: every tomorrow is worth fighting for!

Even though there may have been so many deaths on both sides, the Ukrainians, who are in the minority, have no intention of giving up. We can only hope the West shall have the courage to help them for as long as it needs. Because it does not look like this war is going to end soon.

All those united in Nato must work together and provide the necessary resources for Ukraine to adequately defend itself. It is also very important for the European Union that Ukraine does not lose this war. Even if Putin claims it is the West that has gone on the attack, we should rather be aware that Putin has declared war on the West and will do everything possible to realise his predetermined Greater Russia.

If he succeeds in conquering Ukraine, this will not stop him from moving further southwards on his conquest tour. That is why it comes down to building defences in the surrounding countries now.

At the moment for many it is just a matter of “to survive”. so many youngsters who had beautiful plans for the future saw them ‘explode’. The dancers told me that in one year they have become ten years older. Many of them are not afraid any more to die. They have come to see that they live now and they have to take everything from life, at the time they can take it. Not thinking of tomorrow, but considering living today.

Of the many Ukrainians I teach over here in Belgium, the majority want to return as soon as possible. One girl has plans to stay here, even when the war would come already to an end soon, because she would love to study further in Belgium, to go afterwards back to her family in Ukraine.

Of those in Holland, they have their cats and their kid being safe over here, and that is what matters. Somehow they might consider it here their new “home”. But for the majority their “home” is over there in the north, in eastern Europe, by the Dnieper River and Kerch Strait, which connects the Sea of Azov to the Black Sea.

I personally, I had hoped there would take place a coup against the Russian leader. But he is so smart to make sure those who do not agree with his plans shall disappear forever. The bodies that are returning to Russia are those from faraway places, where people their voice does not count.

I would have loved for the Russians would be coming across more difficulties, facing their dead, and creating a lot of questions, about why this liberation of Ukraine brings so many dead people to them. Though from Ukrainians here who have family in Russia, I hear those living in Russia all the time hear about the West attacking Russia. They do not want to believe their family who fled to the enemy (the West) and who would be brainwashed by the Nato allies.

It is so strange that many living in Russia still did not come to see how they live in a country where there is no freedom of speech any more and where there is an old tyrant, an old dictator governing the country, having a firm grip on the Kremlin.

I look forward to the day that also in Russia this war shall become unpopular and voices from the crowd shall raise.

The Ukrainian leader expressed his gratefulness to all those who make the Ukrainian resistance possible. He said:

These are all our defenders. The Armed Forces of Ukraine. Ground Forces, our infantry and tank-men. Air and Naval Forces. Artillery, air defense, paratroopers, intelligence, border guards. The Special Operations Forces, the Security Service, the National Guard, the police, the territorial defense units – all our security and defense forces. Thanks to you, Ukraine stands. And we endured the furious month and the furious beginning of the war.

And then came spring. New attacks, new wounds, new pain. Everyone saw the true nature of our enemy. The shelling of the maternity hospital, the drama theater in Mariupol, Mykolaiv Regional State Administration, Svobody Square in Kharkiv, the train station in Kramatorsk. We saw Bucha, Irpin, Borodyanka. The whole world clearly realized what the Russian world really means. What Russia is capable of.

At the same time, the world saw what Ukraine is capable of. These are the new heroes. Defenders of Kyiv, defenders of Azovstal. New feats performed by entire cities. Kharkiv, Chernihiv, Mariupol, Kherson, Mykolaiv, Hostomel, Volnovakha, Bucha, Irpin, Okhtyrka. Hero Cities. The capitals of invincibility. New symbols. And with that, new assessments and forecasts for Ukraine.

The whole world could see the horrors and war crimes committed by the Russian army and the Wagner Group. Putin did everything possible to discourage the Ukrainian people. For this, he did not shy away from ordering bombing raids very early in the morning on civilian targets, schools and hospitals.
Again and again, the population had to suffer the indignities at the hands of the Russians again and again, and had to watch family members and friends being robbed of their lives.
Yet they persevered and did not lose the courage to persevere. Some refused to leave their living quarters even though not much remained of them.

The president has reason to be proud of his people.

The first month of the war. And the first turning point in the war. The first changes in the world’s perception of Ukraine. It did not fall in three days. It stopped the second army of the world.

We took new hits every day, learned about new tragedies every day, but we endured thanks to those who gave it all they got every day. For the sake of others.

These are our medics who rescue wounded soldiers on the frontline, perform surgeries under fire, deliver babies in bomb shelters, and stay on duty for days and weeks. Like our rescuers and firefighters who pull people out of the rubble and fire 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And our railroad workers who have been evacuating hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians since the beginning of the war without sleep or rest.

And then there were the first offensives, the first achievements, the first liberated territories. The first and not the last Chornobaivka. Expulsion of the occupiers from the Kyiv, Sumy, and Chernihiv regions. Our Stuhna. Vilkha. Our Neptune and the sinking Moskva cruiser. The first Ramstein. And the second ever Lend-Lease.

Ukraine has surprised the world. Ukraine has inspired the world. Ukraine has united the world. There are thousands of words to prove it, but a few will suffice. HIMARS, Patriot, Abrams, IRIS-T, Challenger, NASAMS, Leopard.

Zelenky is thankful to all who he may consider

“partners, allies and friends who have stood side by side with us throughout the year.

I am glad that the international anti-Putin coalition has grown so much that it requires a separate address.”

I also thank our foreign policy army. Divisions of our diplomats, ambassadors, representatives in international organizations and institutions. All those who are fighting the occupiers with fire and sword of international law, achieving new sanctions and recognition of the terrorist state as a terrorist state.

The war changed the fate of many families. It rewrote the history of our families. It changed our customs and traditions. Grandfathers used to tell their grandchildren how they beat the Nazis. Now grandchildren tell their grandfathers how they beat the Rashists. Mothers and grandmothers used to knit scarves, now they weave camouflage nets. Children used to ask Santa for smartphones and gadgets, but now they give pocket money and raise money for our soldiers.

In fact, every Ukrainian has lost someone in the past year. A father, a son, a brother, a mother, a daughter, a sister. A loved one. A close friend, colleague, neighbour, acquaintance.



  1. Ukraine’s Day of Unity
  2. A country willing to stand tall against any invasion
  3. Ukraine ready for any format of talks with Russia to establish peace
  4. Countries around the world urging their citizens to leave Ukraine immediately
  5. Putin Lies And Manipulates History To Gain Domestic And International Support For His Military Buildup On The Ukrainian Border
  6. Threat of an invasion of Russian troops soon a serious reality
  7. A world leader deciding over other regions or countries
  8. Putin speaks plainly – and the West is speechless
  9. Russia is planning an “invasion of Ukraine”!
  10. The one who claimed he was not planning an invasion in Ukraine
  11. The mainstay of Ukrainian statehood
  12. What a Russian assault on Ukraine would look like
  13. Lisa Rozner reports how Russian troops have begun moving into Ukraine
  14. Catholic University students take shelter in Ukraine
  15. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky urging the European Union to grant his country “immediate” membership
  16. Ukraine’s official request to join the European Union
  17. People in Ukraine standing up to Russian troops – BBC News
  18. Zelenskiy: Russia aims to obliterate Ukraine
  19. Cold War over and back again to bring a war in Ukraine as the end of the liberal world order
  20. The moral failure of considering Ukraine for NATO
  21. The Telegraph looking at the last week of February 2022
  22. Anno 2022, Neutrality or action
  23. Trade surpluses vs Most sweeping set of sanctions ever aimed at a country since World War 2
  24. The Telegraph looking at the first week of March 2022
  25. The first week of March 2022 looked at by the Guardian
  26. No-fly zone needed over Ukraine to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe 
  27. US insight from the Independent for the first week of March 2022
  28. Ukraine From March the 4th up to now
  29. What are Russia’s four key demands it wants Ukraine to follow?
  30. The Role of Religion in Russia’s War on Ukraine
  31. Ministries Evacuate as Russians Reach Irpin, the Evangelical Hub of Ukraine
  32. Ukraine has proven to be a self-confident nation
  33. Cool hand Vlad or Crazy Ivan?
  34. Some highlights of the invasion of Ukraine March 9-16
  35. Conscientious objection and Ukraine
  36. Ukraine calls for Nuremberg-style tribunal to judge Vladimir Putin
  37. To governments everywhere: Stop this war
  38. Ukraine from 2022 March 16-20
  39. Nearly a month since Vladimir Putin ordered Russian troops to invade Ukraine
  40. Allegedly false death numbers
  41. American propaganda or truth about possible use of chemical weapons by Putin
  42. Accusing companies and countries of collaborating in biological warfare is a step too far
  43. The war goes beyond Ukraine – The sword of Damocles hanging over the global economy
  44. Russian army wants to make Ukraine the Syria from Europe
  45. Weekly World Watch March 13 – 19, 2022
  46. Russian doctors plead for end to war
  47. Random Thoughts 3/15/2022 by Ray Barbier and Marcus Ampe
  48. The Telegraph’s view 2022 March 21-27
  49. The Independent’s look at the third week of March 2022
  50. Ukraine’s week of 2022 March 21-27 in view
  51. Deceived Russian boys and mothers
  52. Bioethics after Ukraine
  53. Russia-Ukraine war: the vulnerabilities of strategic thinking in Europe
  54. The Guardian looking at Ukraine one month after the invasion
  55. Christians on the Left Statement on Ukraine April 2022
  56. How the war in Ukraine will lead to the fulfilment of many Bible prophecies
  57. UK giving £100m more in lethal aid to Ukraine
  58. Does the population of Russia know what the Russian soldiers are doing in Ukraine
  59. Hidden away in the mountains of the Zakarpattia region of Ukraine
  60. Indy briefing for the week of April 6, 2022
  61. The Guardian’s view on Ukraine for the first half of April 2022
  62. President of Ukraine met with the Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense of the United States of America
  63. Has Ukraine become a Symbol of ‘Freedom’
  64. Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals
  65. Has Russia already started World War Three?
  66. Russia ‘liberates’ Mariupol as last defenders surrender
  67. Bloomberg’s view on Ukraine at the beginning of June 2022
  68. Kremenchuk Russian blot
  69. Russian Protestants and a conflict of fratricide
  70. From an Ukrainian ballerina
  71. Russian and Ukrainian Orthodox churches and synagogues feeling pressure from above
  72. The New York Times from July 11 – July 17
  73. This is Europe: The Guardian looking at the chaos in Italy and Ukraine
  74. 216 days the war in Ukraine goes on
  75. On Quora: Is it true that Ukraine is overrun with Neo-Nazis?
  76. Putin was so afraid of the democracy that was beginning to flourish in Ukraine that he decided to invade Ukraine
  77. New York Times view for 2022 August 29 – September 04
  78. Why Russia’s October 10 attacks on Kyiv were not about the Crimean Bridge
  79. a Victory drink left behind unexpectedly
  80. Russia’s retreat from Kherson
  81. Caution that Russians do not lay traps
  82. How willing are people to stand up for their values and beliefs
  83. Ukrainian flags fly over Kherson again
  84. The Telegraph dispatches from Ukraine 2022 December
  85. If Ukraine has taught us anything
  86. Put Putin on trial!
  87. Launched ill-judged invasion of Ukraine
  88. The push for peace
  89. Ukraine attacks Russian air base
  90. Situation in Ukraine 2022 December 28
  91. Simplifying the construction of overhead power lines and substations
  92. Ukraine’s social obligations to Ukrainians
  93. 2023 Wednesday morning briefing January 04
  94. Russia not at war with Ukraine claims Kremlin hardliner
  95. From Chris Evans, the editor of the Telegraph 23 January 2023
  96. Europe sucked into a war against Russia
  97. Scholz gives the green light on tanks – but why did it take so long?
  98. Russia hits Ukraine cities with wave of missile attacks
  99. France ‘concerned’ about Britain’s Armed Forces & Kyiv warned against retaking Crimea
  100. Bloomberg looking at One Year of war
  101. U.N. ambassador warns China not to send weapons to help Russia’s Ukraine war
  102. The Telegraph Frontpage 2023 February 21
  103. The Telegraph Frontpage Wednesday 2023 February 22
  104. The war in Ukraine enters into its second year tomorrow
  105. Ukraine has become the centre of the European continent


Additional reading

  1. Watch Crisis in Crimea & Ukraine – talk from 2014!
  2. Putin’s Moves Toward War in Ukraine Show How Dangerous He Has Become
  3. Russia invades Ukraine: A dark day for Europe
  4. Prayer for 2022 March 06: Asking for Strength by the Russian-Ukrainian war
  5. Russia-Ukraine war: Putin lays waste to cities
  6. Some out of date from our Ukrainian brethren
  7. Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters who got over the border
  8. Surrounded by war crimes performing Russians
  9. Worldwide Call to Prayer for Brethren in Ukraine and Russia
  10. Build-up of Russian arms and military posturing
  11. Signs of the Times – “Distress of nations …”
  12. After the prayer sessions for our brothers in Ukraine and Russia
  13. Ukraine war is veering fast towards a big power conflict
  14. Thank you to those of you that have provided items for the children of Ukraine and other sufferers
  15. Russia vows to target British weapons as UK missile downs helicopter
  16. Ukraine update 21 April 2022
  17. Pledges to send more military assistance to Ukraine and Russian warnings
  18. Signs of the Times – Tensions between Russia and Israel
  19. Ukraine 2022 update end of April
  20. Ukraine – What we know & What can we do
  21. Signs of the Times – On manoeuvres
  22. Nations being Prepared for Christ’s Appearance
  23. Many who are waiting for Interviews, Visa and ID cards
  24. Putin puts Russia’s nuclear force on high alert
  25. US adds $800m in military aid to Ukraine, including drones, anti-tank weapons
  26. Northern Hemisphere time of Spring & War in Ukraine
  27. Russian ‘nuclear tsunami’ will wipe out Britain, Kremlin-backed media threatens
  28. Restrictions in Russia because of sanctions from the West for peace mission in Ukraine.
  29. Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters
  30. Our brothers in Kyiv’s northwest suburb Irpin
  31. Leipzig Missionswerk and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Russia #1 Teutonic Livonia, Russian civil war and poverty
  32. Purim in days of Ukrainian war
  33. Will Ukraine Escape Russian Domination?
  34. Key Facts About Ukraine and the Russian invasion
  35. President Volodymyr Zelensky, addressing a European Parliament emergency session via videolink
  36. Russian invasion of Ukraine enters seventh day – BBC News
  37. Ukraine Crisis Reading List
  38. Despicable actions that endanger entire regions and historical monuments in addition to citizens
  39. Will the Russian War in Ukraine reset World diplomacy?
  40. Full speech of President Vladimir Putin delivered on 18.03. 2022 in the Great Sports Arena of the Olympic Complex Luzhniki
  41. EU must fight in the diplomatic and economic frontline
  42. Ballet Dancers Fleeing Ukraine Rubble Find Bucharest Stage
  43. Continued attacks clearly targeting civilians2022 the year of fearing some wars
  44. Going to the end of 2022 having to see an ongoing invasion
  45. Optical illusions
  46. Make Ukraine A Buffer State Between Russia & the EU
  47. Ukraine prepares
  48. Pope Francis I making another passionate appeal for peace in Ukraine
  49. Why Putin’s Attack on Ukraine Could Mean World War 3
  50. Sending Love to the people of Ukraine
  51. Last week’s saying about Russia signing decrees ordering military forces into two separatist regions of Ukraine for “peacekeeping” purposes
  52. Last week: It became a fact: Russia invades Ukraine
  53. he biggest ground offensive in Europe since World War II
  54. No one can split Ukraine they say
  55. The judgement of posterity will determine whether invading Ukraine was wise or a mistake
  56. A letter from Kyiv
  57. Thoughts from a Ukrainian refugee
  58. Overcoming The Terror Of War
  59. Praying For The Victims Of Ukraine
  60. The invasion of Ukraine is personal for me…as it is for many of us
  61. Looking at a “Man from the North” endangering the world
  62. Elon Musk challenging Vladimir Putin
  63. Russia demonstrated it has the capability to reach out and destroy targets anywhere within 1200 miles
  64. Ukraine war is veering fast towards a big power conflict
  65. Is Putin the Antichrist?
  66. UNESCO Fears Ukraine Harm As Russian Culture Backlash Grows
  67. As Europe Sends $300 Million per day to Russia for Oil and NatGas, TotalEnergies Looks After Customers in Tricky Decision
  68. EU to snatch Kremlin’s oil and gas profits to rebuild Ukraine
  69. Pushing Russia – Push Russia out of whole of Ukraine, says Truss
  70. Liz Truss: We may support a tribunal to try Putin over war in Ukraine
  71. Yulia Tymoshenko: We are in World War Three already
  72. Living under Russian occupation
  73. Majority of US weapons promised to Ukraine in February delivered
  74. Putin lays out his demands in Turkish phone call
  75. UN suspends Russia from human rights body over atrocities in Ukraine
  76. Food crisis looms as landmines litter Ukraine farmer’s fields


Further related

  1. Ukraine war: Zelenskyy’s message for Holocaust Memorial Day, Wagner deserters ‘shot’
  2. Former Putin aide: Coup a ‘real possibility’
  3. More Americans believe US provides too much support to Ukraine
  4. Ukraine war: Moscow creeps towards Bakhmut, Russian ‘propaganda institutions’, nuclear treaty woes
  5. Entering a new period of ‘Cold War’
  6. PM warns Vladimir Putin against ‘tragic mistake’ as tensions rise with Ukraine
  7. Moscow lists demands for defusing Ukraine tensions
  8. Israel weighing options amid deepening Russia-Ukraine crisis
  9. Antisemitism animating Putin’s claim to ‘denazify’ Ukraine
  10. Russia-Ukraine Update: Ukraine Braces for Possible Russian Offensive
  11. Ukrainian’s art in time of war, Part II
  12. Blinken: Determination that Russia committed crimes against humanity ‘starkly clear’
  13. « We can’t live. We are just surviving » The story of a 19 year old Ukrainian a year after the beginning of the war
  14. Eiffel Tower, Trafalgar Square lit up in yellow and blue to mark 1 year of war in Ukraine
  15. Vladimir Putin is accused of “barbarism” by Volodymyr Zelensky for attacking Odesa.
  16. Vitali Klitschko, the mayor of Kyiv, indicated as much when rockets were launched.
  17. Putin ally laments war on Russian state television: “West is starting to mock us.”
  18. Moscow establishes a new ‘temporary capital’ for the Kherson area as Ukraine retakes the city.
  19. With the latest moves towards an invasion of Ukraine, Vladimir Putin joins the dictators’ ranks
  20. Is anybody keeping an eye on small-time despot Lukashenko? = Putin’s minion
  21. Our Love Affair With Volodymyr Zelensky
  22. Putin Could Have Been A Hero
  23. Racism on the Ukrainian/Polish Border
  24. Kyiv Will Be Gassed Any Day Now
  25. Poem 105 – Marina
  26. Poem 110 – Adam’s Drums
  27. Sending love to the people of Ukraine
  28. Invasion or not, Russian imperialism is a threat to Ukraine
  29. President Biden, do not abandon Ukraine
  30. Ukrainian Roma in times of war
  31. Thoughts from a Ukrainian refugee
  32. Overcoming The Terror Of War
  33. Russia Suspends New START Nuclear Treaty with United States
  34. Ukrainian flag flies at City Hall to commemorate 1-year anniversary of Russia’s Invasion
  35. FATF suspended Russia’s membership, said- Attacks against Ukraine…
  36. Continued Support for Ukrainians in Surrey
  37. Leading a Business in Ukraine During the War
  38. Russians mark Ukraine war anniversary with flowers, arrests
  39. A look at how the Ukraine war anniversary is being marked around the world
  40. For years, Putin didn’t invade Ukraine. What made him finally snap in 2022?
  41. UK must prepare for new ‘Cold War’, with attacks by Russian spies, even if Ukraine beats Putin, experts warn
  42. Some Realists are Unrealistic About Russia
  43. Solemn day as Ukraine marks one year since Russian invasion
  44. Protests in Russia denounce Putin’s war in Ukraine on invasion anniversary
  45. We Stand with Ukraine | Rosa Sparks
  46. One year, eight world-changing numbers. Quantifying Russia’s war in Ukraine.
  47. 4 Big Mistakes by the Russian Military in Ukraine
  48. US imposes sanctions on Russia on anniversary of Ukraine invasion – Newstimeus

Published by Marcus Ampe

Retired dancer, choreographer, choreologist Founder of the Dance impresario office and archive: Danscontact-Dansarchief plus the Association for Bible scholars, the Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" and "From Guestwriters" and creator of the site "Messiah for all". - Gepensioneerd danser, choreograaf, choreoloog. Stichter van Danscontact-Dansarchief plus van de Vereniging voor Bijbelvorsers, de Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" en "From Guestwriters" en maker van de site "Messiah for all".

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