March 8, 2022
On March 3, 2022, members of the American Mideast Coalition for Democracy met with Honorary Consul of Ukraine, Valeriy Goloborodko who briefed the group on the latest news coming from inside Ukraine. He believes the Russian army, whose conscripts were not expecting the fierce resistance they have encountered, is demoralized. Ukrainians, on the other hand, are standing in line for weapons. While the women and children are fleeing the fighting, the men have remained to fight for their country. The Russian army is shelling and dropping bombs on civilian areas and deliberately destroying infrastructure, including airports. An International Brigade is also forming and men are arriving from all over the world to join the fight. US citizens are helping orphans to escape to Poland and help is streaming in from local governments and corporations.
Mr. Goloborodko also discussed how Russia is waging information warfare by publishing photos of people with Ukrainian flags and Nazi flags together and other means of misleading the Russian people. They are also conducting cyber-attacks on Ukrainian government websites and banking system. Many areas are without electricity, heat and water. He suggested some things we can do from here:
- Pray for courage and strength
- Ask our elected representatives to support a no-fly zone and/or other ways to protect the people of Ukraine.
- Help with humanitarian aid – warehouses in Poland are running low.
Mr. Goloborodko expressed the belief that the US will have to confront Putin sooner or later and that if Putin is allowed to take all of Ukraine, he will not stop there. He believes Putin wants to overthrow democracy in Ukraine and install a puppet government to do Moscow’s bidding.
Question: Why can’t an independent entity take out that convoy which is stalled on the road north of Kyiv?
Valeriy Goloborodko: Our military is open to it. They don’t have the ability to do it themselves. Drones are being discussed, but the US is afraid of direct involvement.
Question: Is it possible that once this changes to a partisan war, then more help will flow in? I would like to volunteer to go fight myself.
Answer: Putin is very angry and will be on a mission of “payback” for a long time. He thought he could take Ukraine very easily, that the government would capitulate quickly, but Zelensky and the Ukrainian people surprised him and this has made him very angry.
To volunteer to fight with the Ukrainian army, fill out the form here.
Several AMCD members expressed interest in volunteering.
Question: The Iranian people unite with the Ukrainian people! We are with you.
Answer: Ukraine regained our independence by a vote by the vast majority. Yeltsin was President, then. We knew that sooner or later, Russia would invade. The fighting in the east has been going on since Russia took Crimea, now Putin recognized the two eastern provinces as independent and used it as an excuse for a large-scale invasion. He says he wants to de-militarize Ukraine and de-nationalize Ukraine. To his surprise, the ordinary people took up arms to defend their homeland. Ukrainian nationalism is much deeper and stronger than Putin expected.
Question: Is negotiation possible?
Answer: Some things can be done, but there are things we cannot capitulate on such as the de-militarization of Ukraine, the recognition of Crimea as Russian, or a puppet government in Ukraine.
Question: The people are suffering, but they are helping each other quite heroically, baking bread for each other etc., and ordinary Russians are giving food and shelter to refugees and so forth. We should be careful not to discriminate against our Russian-American friends.
Answer: Russia is stopping the food shipments. Ukrainians are acting out of love, they don’t want to kill Russians, but they will if they have to. Our war is not with the culture or the language, but against this evil plan of Putin’s. Many Russians and Belarusians are standing with Ukraine. We do not want to fight the Russians, they have forced us to fight them.
Question: The government of Ukraine has said that the Russians have lost about 900 soldiers, but by normal ratio of civilian to soldier deaths would indicate the up to 200, 000 Ukrainian civilians have been killed. Could that be possible? And about the no-fly zone, who would implement it? NATO? The UN?
Answer: I think the ratio is more like 1 to 10 or 1 to 15 soldiers to civilians.
First, the US should stop funding the war by purchasing oil from Russia. US oil can replace it. Second, we need defensive systems like Iron Dome, radar systems in Poland; drones would require US assets to control them, and the administration doesn’t want to risk world war by supplying drones, unfortunately.
Question: Have you approached your Senators from Washington State?
Answer: Yes, we have had many meetings with Senators and other lawmakers to explain the urgent needs of Ukrainians.
Question: Would it be possible to bring President Trump forward as a negotiator?
Answer: I don’t know, but we need solidarity to stop Putin. The invasion has united the political parties of Ukraine. We need to convince those who are questioning the wisdom of supporting Ukraine to change their minds. Russian forces are striking nuclear power stations as we speak.
We need help from everyone: the EU, the US and NATO.
Send checks to: The Pacific Ukrainian Society
600 First Ave. North
Seattle, WA 98104