Russia’s second invasion of Ukraine started on February 24, 2022 and has resulted in major loss of life, damage to vital infrastructure, and the displacement of over 8 million refugees as well as millions of internally displaced Ukrainians. The West has leveled unprecedented sanctions against Moscow in response, significantly weakening the Russian economy. At the same time, the Russian government has cracked down on critics, shut down independent media, and imposed draconian penalties on individuals who oppose the war.
In less than half a year of war, Kyiv has successfully defended major urban centers, with increased military support from the West, and despite a major asymmetry in forces and equipment compared to Russia. Moscow, on the other hand, despite claims of harboring one of the most powerful armies on earth, has been bogged down by a lack of preparation, ineffective internal communication, low morale, and failing resupply routes. It has nevertheless managed to control large parts of the east of Ukraine in the Donbass region, and, at times, the Kherson region.
The front line shifts on a daily basis, and both sides take and lose territory regularly. The human cost remains extremely high, with dozens Ukrainian and Russian soldiers, as well as Ukrainian civilians, dying on an almost daily basis.
The daily threats to Ukrainian security have also affected its society and institutions. Key national debates are now centered on the need to accelerate reforms, the role of women, media plurality, the approach to Russian culture, a new identity defined by the war effort, and the even more crucial role of digitization.
Belarus, which borders both Russia and Ukraine, has also been dragged into the conflict, as it serves as a base for Russian troops and equipment, while some Belarusians have joined the Ukrainian defense forces to fight Moscow and the pro-Russian regime of Lukashenko in Minsk.
Diplomatically, Russia has become increasingly more isolated. China and India, initially strategically ambiguous about the invasion, have started to distance themselves from Moscow’s action. A large majority of UN members have condemned Russia’s actions, while NATO and the European Union are providing Ukraine with political support, military equipment, and humanitarian aid. Nascent discussions regarding Ukraine’s reconstruction have emerged, but the key questions of who will pay the estimated USD 750 billion needed, how aid will be distributed, and who will rebuild Ukrainian cities and infrastructure remain unanswered.
At the same time, the war is also turning into an economic one: Europe is caught in a gas conundrum as many countries depend on supplies from Russia, while there are few reserves to meet the looming 2022–2023 winter season.
Similarly, a number of countries largely dependent on grain imports and fertilizers from both Russia and Ukraine are caught in the trade war, given that the passage for ships transporting goods is blocked by Moscow’s attacks or affected by sanctions.
Global Voices is covering the war with a special focus on consequences, both political and economic, in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and Central and Eastern Europe, while animating the lived experience of people in Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus.
Reliable sources with frequent updates in English, Ukrainian and Russian:
- The Kyiv-based English-language newspaper Kyiv Independent.
- The Riga-based independent Russophone and Anglophone media outlet Meduza.
- The Vilnius-based independent media outlet Media Zona
- The Insider
- Holod Media
- Ukrainian: The Kyiv-based Ukrainska Pravda
- Ukrainian: The Kyiv-based Espresso.TV
- Ukrainian: The Lviv-based Zahid
Stories about Russia invades Ukraine
Andrey Zakharov, BBC News Russian: For eight years, propaganda has been preparing people to support the war in Ukraine
In his opinion, Russia has lost the information war abroad, even though many Russian citizens support the regime.
"You can love Japan, and be proud to be Japanese, without defending this history of fascism."
In South Germany, Russians and Belarusians opposing their governments and Moscow's invasion of Ukraine join Ukrainians in street demonstrations to show solidarity and provide support to Ukrainians.
In Georgia, one of the popular destinations for feeling Russians, the influx of the country's new residents has been met with less enthusiasm.
This week we dive into research from the Civic Media Observatory around Russian sentiment about the war in Ukraine.
Bosnians expressed empathy for the suffering people of Ukraine, based on their still fresh memories of their own suffering during the 1990s war, including the 3-year long siege of Sarajevo.
During the two weeks after the latest escalation of the war in Ukraine, there were numerous attempts to misinform the public and create situations that would jeopardize public safety in Kosovo.
Attempts to evacuate residents were largely unsuccessful, until March 14, when more than 160 private cars finally left the city.
The war in Ukraine has rekindled the diplomatic battles and mutual Kosovo-Serbia accusations.
“Do you have a receipt for this jacket, Anya?” Ukrainian VK users are searching for items stolen from Bucha in Rubtsovsk online groups.
This year’s G20 is being chaired by Indonesian President Joko Widodo who is facing pressure to ban Russian representatives because of Russia’s war in Ukraine.
"It is sanitized military propaganda intended for domestic consumption.”
President Jair Bolsonaro espouses Brazil's neutrality, while Brazil's ambassador to the UN voted in favour of condemning Russia's invasion of Ukraine along with 141 other countries.
Each state responded differently to the war: ignoring it altogether, incorporating their own national interests, and adapting to the changing course of war, while trying to withstand Russian pressure.
Satellite Images Map of Ukraine incorporates satellite images, drone footage, and 3D visualization to track, organize, and verify damage done to Ukraine.
Singer Svyatoslav Vakarchuk from the Ukrainian cult band Okean Elzy spoke to Global Voices about Russian celebrities, his urge to perform during the crisis and why writing music is impossible.
Given the likelihood that Russian social media API will be closed for further research, Global Voices investigated the opinions of VKontakte users on the Russian war with Ukraine.
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Today we travel to Japan, Africa, and Turkey.
The Ukraine crisis is likely to sideline the climate goals of Nepal for the next few years; however, this may be an opportunity to phase out fossil fuels.
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Cracking on Putin and his entourage seems the right thing to do now. But how can we keep a dialogue with his successor to avoid future wars?