Today marks four years since the Russian military shot down passenger plane MH17 over the warzone in Ukraine.
Above is the service we held for ambassadors and politicians at the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Canberra in 2014 (twenty-seven Australians were killed in the disaster). In the first picture ambassadors and other embassy representatives from countries including the Netherlands, Malaysia, and the United States can be seen on the left.
The second is a cross surrounded by 298 candles – one for each victim of the attack.
I hope many people will develop a conscience and join in the boycott of the World Cup in Russia that begins today. Who cares about men chasing a ball when it’s happening in Putin’s brutal, corrupt dictatorship?
I’m not sure how many war crimes in Ukraine and Syria, how many invasions and annexations, or how many assassinations it will take for the world to prioritise humanity over soccer, but we’re not there yet.
A memorial to the dead I photographed in 2016.
Today is the fourth anniversary of the end of Ukraine’s Euromaidan revolution. On the 20th of February, 2014 pro-Russian snipers took to the streets and shot and killed as many civilians as they could manage.
Snipers in the same spot the memorials are now.
The revolution resulted in overthrowing the corrupt, dictatorial oligarch in charge of the country, but he fled to Russia and paved the way for Putin’s invasion shortly afterwards.
And a reminder Russia is once again occupying Crimea and committing acts of ethnic cleansing against the Tatars.
Another year of Russian aggression, and another year our Christmas cards to relatives cannot reach the warzone where Russia is still invading Ukraine (not that it makes the news anymore!).
I can’t even begin to explain how angry I am with everyone declaring 2016 the “Worst Year Ever” just because of Brexit and Trump. There’re TWO MILLION Ukrainian refugees (while countries like Germany – European countries – take in so many Middle Eastern refugees, they will not help Ukrainians).
Several of my Ukrainian family members have died since Putin invaded, but nobody could care less about Russian aggression until it was Britain and America who suffered.
Personally, I think of 2016 as the year of selfishness. It’s only the “Worst” year if you usually just watch reality TV.