Today, on the Independence Day of Ukraine which marks its independence from Soviet rule in 1991, no public events will take place in Ukraine. The Ukrainian government has banned any public celebrations in Kyiv. Other cities have restricted public gatherings and introduced curfews or orders to work from home. The country is holding its breath, concerned about what the Russian government has planned for the day, and how many people will get murdered in the ongoing war of aggression. The US embassy in Kyiv has published a warning on planned strikes by the Russian military.

Six months ago, on February 24th, Russia attacked Ukraine without declaring war. Vladimir Putin announced the start of a "special operation” directed only against the military and threatened to use nuclear weapons if any country tried to thwart the invasion. Both statements turned out to be lies.

In August, the UN confirmed the deaths of more than 5,500 Ukrainian civilians, but the real number of casualties is much higher. Around 30 countries have provided Ukraine with lethal weapons, ammunition and many more with medicine. Some states have provided training for the AFU on their territory or sent military instructors. Russia responded only at diplomatic level.

Disinformation has become the Kremlin's powerful weapon. Six days before the full-scale invasion, Foreign Minister Lavrov claimed that Russia was not going to attack Ukraine. Two weeks after the start of the war, he reported that "Russia has not attacked anyone". In the first days of the war, Putin stressed that "only nationalists are fighting the Russian army". Defense Minister Shoigu repeatedly stated that "our soldiers do not shoot at civilians". Such claims are equally absurd and inhumane. But professional propagandists masterfully distort events, substitute facts with speculation, and mix truth with lies.

In the imperial tradition of the Russian state, Putin talks in a colonial manner about "brotherly nations", "historical lands" and the "rights of Russian-speakers". He has also used quasi-states (LNR, PMR, Abkhazia, South Ossetia) to achieve military and political goals. In 30 years, Russia has been involved in 15 armed conflicts. It has raised serious claims on Latvia, Estonia, Poland and the North Atlantic Alliance as a whole.

Despite these military facts, Russian propaganda tries to convince Europeans to "stay away" from "Western interference in Ukraine's affairs". EU citizens are being persuaded to stay away as:
  • war may break out;
  • prices will rise;
  • there is a risk of a nuclear catastrophe;
  • the economy will suffer;
  • you will provoke more casualties.

Western support is a determining factor in the conflict. After three months of intense warfare, Ukraine has exhausted a significant amount of ammunition and lost a lot of equipment. It does not have the resources to hold the 1,800 km front on its own and reclaim lost territory.

Today, Ukraine is a protective barrier keeping the Russian army "in the far East". Ukraine badly needs European help, but Europe is also interested in a Ukrainian victory.
There are first signs of “fatigue” in German society concerning the war in Ukraine. The journalist Samira El Ouassil explains that after six months of reporting on an issue, people, in general, do not perceive it as news anymore and a terrible situation starts to be perceived as - continuously - terrible. Additionally, the repetition of images does not lead to vivid attention to the war, but a certain inuring. While German media keep reporting on the war, emotional exhaustion or fatigue that leads to a decreased feeling of empathy is spreading. A recent study has shown that most Germans inform themselves less since the beginning of the war and many take a break from the reports. We do not want mental harm to anyone, but it is important to highlight that the Kremlin’s strategy is based on this forgetting. Thus, on the contrary, we need to consciously keep in mind the suffering of the Ukrainian population. We take this as a motivation to continue to draw attention to the war in Ukraine!
Against any kind of fatigue symptoms, we recommend attending events related to the war in Ukraine:

This Wednesday evening, the UKRAINE FREEDOM PARADE by the organization of Ukrainian activists Vitsche takes place. Vitsche has been active since the outbreak of war, tirelessly drawing attention to the war and its consequences, denouncing injustice, and making demands. The demo starts at 5:30 p.m. at Breitscheidplatz and ends at the Brandenburg Gate. They write: "Especially this year it is very important to show the world that we are strong, united, and free."

The newly created art space for Ukrainian artists Hotel Continental invites to a meet & chill CELEBRATING THE DAY OF UKRAINIAN INDEPENDENCE tonight. Check out their new exhibitions, meet new people and listen live to Ukrainian singer Vogel Milch.

The Berlin-based feminist Eastern European initiative In Feminis Veritas is organizing this Friday with Vitsche and one of our team members a FEMINIST SOLIDARITY DAY WITH UKRAINE. The impact that the war has had on LGBTIQ+ people will be in the focus of the program that includes panel talks, an art exhibition and silent auction of photographs by Ukrainian artists. The event closes with a live protest performance and musical guests. Entrance to the event is free. Donations will be collected for the Ukrainian feminist initiative СФЕРА.
Donations for Ukraine. Dekabristen e.V., in cooperation with Ukrainian partner organizations and Berlin-based activists, received donations of 25,000 euros and could provide first aid kits and medical equipment to Kyiv, humanitarian aid to Kharkiv, humanitarian aid and support for Ukrainian refugees with disabilities in Germany, and cover costs of the visit of teenagers from Mariupol at documenta15 in Kassel. The next round of donations will go directly to our partner in Zaporizhzhya, who supports Ukrainian troops with groceries and supplies. Please donate via Paypal to vorstand@dekabristen.org or by bank transfer to Dekabsten e.V., DE20 12030000 1020168561, BYLADEM1001 with the purpose “Save Ukraine”. Thank you!

New: CONSPIRACY 101. Podcast and online course on conspiracy theories and disinformation in Ukrainian. The online course in Russian is coming soon. By Citizen+

New project: One Caucasus. Researching Common territories. Details

Project update: SDG LENS. Monitoring Sustainable Development in Eastern Europe and South Caucasus. Details

Event: Decolonizing Feminist Solidarities on August 26 in Tbilisi from Feminist Translocalities. Details
We’re hiring! (m/f/d)
Project manager (m/f/d) for Berlin Incubator for Media in Exile (employment 70-100%, TVöD 13, 3+ years of experience in project management, educational or international media programs, fluent in German and English, good+ in Ukrainian and/or Russian)

Project coordinator/consultant (m/f/d) for media projects in Berlin (employment or freelance 50-100%, TVöD 11, 1+ years of experience in project management, educational or international media programs, fluent in German and English, good in Ukrainian or Russian)

Internship (m/f/d) in project and event management at the Berlin office (paid full or part-time internship for 6 months)

Internship (m/f/d) in finance management at the Berlin office (paid full or part-time internship for 6 months)

We are looking forward to your application with your CV and motivation letter via vorstand@dekabristen.org!