Cerberus Komando is an Afrikaans-named unit helping in Ukrai...NEXT
Please allow me to generalize about Americans and other for...
Serge AJul 15, 2022 (0)
Public figures in the US often note that Ukrainians are good at memes. It's a Ukrainian tradition to mark significant events with art and music. When the Turkish company Baykar sent Ukraine its Bayraktar drone, Ukrainians dubbed the drone a savior bird and wrote songs and memes in its honor. Some families even named their newborns Bayraktar.
While HIMARS -- Lockheed Martin's High Mobility Artillery Rocket System -- were en route to Ukraine, secrecy prevailed. The public was kept in the dark until HIMARS were in operation on the battlefield, and operate they did. Ukrainians couldn't believe their eyes at the precision of these weapons. During the first week out, they hit about 50 significant targets - including ammunition warehouses and command posts. The Russians lost more commanding officers during that week than in the previous three months. Almost overnight, HIMARS became the new national hero, and the memes followed.
It looks like a new popular name for newborns is in the making. Ukrainians have talked of nothing but HIMARS for the past two weeks.
Ukrainians created a meme in honor of MRLS SAINT HIMARS, the true savior of the people. Let the art speak for itself.
Memes aside, HIMARS' phenomenal precision is making waves. In pro-Russian channels on Telegram, much hand-wringing ensued when news came out about massive explosions. Russian people were actually worried that little old Ukraine could get the upper hand. Russians appear oblivious to the moral confusion of supporting the genocide of the Ukrainian people on the one hand, while on the other they cannot tolerate strikes on their own corrupt army. Do Russians not acknowledge that Ukrainians are human beings? To Russians, the murder of a Ukrainian baby in a random rocket attack on Ukrainian soil is fine, but the loss of soldiers, the same soldiers who raped and killed innocent people in Bucha and Mariupol, is atrocious.
It was precisely HIMARS systems that prevented the Russians from attacking further, stalling the Russian army's advances across the front line. The Russian army failed to take even a single foot of land last week. The destruction of 50 ammunition warehouses appears to have made a difference.
Russia's attempts to locate MLRSs and HIMARS failed miserably, and when they tried to attack, they missed. In frustration, the Russians decided to strike back using civilian buildings as targets. Today alone there were nine rocket attacks on Nikolayev and one massive seven-rocket attack on a peaceful city called Vynnitsya.
Today at a little past 10 am southern and western air raid alarms sounded, and half an hour later the rockets struck. The story is still developing but the rockets are called Caliber and they were launched from Russian ships in the Black Sea. The trajectory was carefully chosen to avoid Ukrainian anti-aircraft defense systems guarding bigger towns. Early reports indicated the rockets were preprogrammed to fly through Ukraine, twisting and turning, changing direction from one city to another. Caliber rockets are guided missiles that can be pre-programmed or controlled during flight. Essentially, they are small, self-destructing jet planes. Ukrainian anti-aircraft systems took down four out of seven Caliber rockets but three hit on target.
A young mother and her child died crossing the street. All that remained of the mother was her foot, found near the body of her toddler. The frame of the two is from a video still that was uploaded to Instagram half an hour before their death. This horrendous attack left more than 30 people known dead and the same amount missing. Once again, there are pictures of burned bodies and unrecognizable faces. Once again, Russia has proved itself a terrorist state. The buildings they hit – a concert hall and a shopping mall -- have no military value. Of course, the Russians said army men were hiding there. But army men are everywhere, for Ukraine is at war.
In a bitter afterglow, the Russian people put their emotions on display in comments on the Vynnitsya tragedy, translated here to make it easier to see into the hearts of who exactly the Ukrainians are fighting.
Ukrainians continue to believe in the Armed Forces of Ukraine because they are all that stand between civilians and the killers trying to eliminate them. And as for me, I can only say that whenever I get mentally exhausted from the death and destruction around me, I think about our soldiers on the front lines. I have spoken to quite a few soldiers, and PTSD doesn't even begin to describe their state.
As I am writing this, Ukraine is again on the brink of potential horror. Russia has delivered an ultimatum to capitulate or be exterminated. We believe in God and our Armed Forces. We pray for ourselves and them - them especially.
Serge A is of Ukrainian descent, grew up in Brooklyn and is volunteering in Ukraine as a legally armed member of a Territorial Defense Group. He was a columnist for the newspaper at Pace University which he attended as an undergrad.
Welcome to the discussion.