Back when I was a sociology student at Kyiv-Mohyla, I was stupidly, shamelessly enamoured with the collective western Left. I dreamed of a day when Ukrainian academia would have widespread and popular discussions about colonialism, privilege, and all of the -isms. I read essays
by prominent English-speaking activists and thought “oh, if only these brilliant people were to learn about Ukraine and its complicated past, about the discrimination we have faced throughout the centuries, about the genocides and revolutions. They would understand us. They would
probably share valuable experience or help us somehow lay down the theoretical groundwork that would explain all of the traumatic events we’ve witnessed and lived though.” I was… dazzlingly naive. And now, when my country is under attack from a literal kleptofascist empire that
openly declares it’s going to commit ethnic cleansing, when our children and women die in agony, and when our academics and queer activists, nihilists and journalists, writers and liberals, doctors, teachers, feminists and conservatives, Muslims and Jews, atheists and clergymen
are desperately fighting against a better-armed, bloodthirsty enemy intent on levelling our cities with the ground, burning our fields, raping us, killing us, blowing up our hospitals and destroying our monuments, I look at the abstract western Left (or, at least, its most vocal
part) and I see nothing but scorn in their eyes. Scorn, condescending, privileged carelessness. They preach equality and resistance to oppression and yet accuse people like myself (feminist queer women who’ve spent their lives striving for equal rights) of being Nazis because we
don’t want to kneel over and die in silence. They talk about the importance of representation and yet shut us up whenever we try and tell them about our experiences. They write books about us without turning to a single Ukrainian expert for guidance or information. They accuse
others of being privileged and lacking empathy, and yet can’t seem to grasp the concept that not being in an active war zone and not worrying about your loved ones dying at any given moment is, in fact, privilege. They claim that we do not deserve sympathy because we aren’t doing
enough for LGBTQ rights in this country — and then proceed to ignore the LGBTQ soldiers risking their lives on the frontlines. They spout careless, hurtful bullshit, quoting their out-of-touch idols who preach absolute pacifism only because it’s not their lives at stake.
I know not all western leftists are like this. Obviously not. I know many of them do sympathise with our plight, and I’m thankful for their support. But the ones who treat this invasion as an excuse to build long-winded theories about how NATO is some ever present universal evil,
or treat all of this as some sort of twisted ethics exercise, a trolly problem in which Ukrainians are the sacrificial savages who need to die quietly before real people start suffering from high gas prices or nuclear war… I’ll never forget those.
I am absolutely amazed and over the moon that this thread has gotten such a response! If you want to hear more from Ukrainian leftists who’ve had their world turned upside-down by the war, check out this opinion piece by @ahatanhel.

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More from @rynkrynk

Nov 30
I remember many of the leftists currently cheering on horrific violence against civilians in the name of decolonisation lecturing Ukrainians on how joking about dead russian soldiers on was unethical and borderline psychopathic. Don’t tell me this is about anti-imperialism.
Justifying the actions of Hamas isn’t about your deep devotion to anti-imperialist ideas, nor is it about your sympathy for Palestinians. You’ve just found what you think is a reasonable excuse for your antisemitism and bloodlust.
Remember how book twitter told off Ukrainians for telling a writer that it was bad timing to publish a novel set in russia and accused us of promoting cancel culture? How many of these people are currently justifying literal pogroms and mass boycotts of Jewish-owned businesses?
Read 6 tweets
Oct 30
The thing that drives me up the wall is that the war in Ukraine is such a clear-cut and solvable issue, you literally don’t need to come up with convoluted theories and complex solutions. We’ve got internationally recognised borders. We’ve got allies that are more than able to
provide us with the weapons needed to push russia back to those borders. We’ve got a more than capable army that’s already fighting tooth and nail to push russia back. We’ve got a government that has all the public support it could ask for, and a civil society that’s unified and
absolutely clear on what victory should look like. We’ve also spent the past year hearing russia scream about a new red line every damn week, and by now we’ve empirically established that there actually are no red lines, it’s just the old nuclear blackmail and a lot of huffing
Read 7 tweets
Oct 20
I seriously can’t handle the levels of criticism and judgement levelled at Ukrainians right now, and the impossibly high standards we’re being held to. We’re not perfect victims — because there’s no such thing. But cherrypicking thousands of tweets to use the few racist or just
plain mean ones in order to accuse a country with a pretty diverse population of over 40 million people of being unworthy of support in the face of genocide while simultaneously claiming to be a firm believer in human rights is… well, insane.
There have been countless cases of absolutely vile anti-Semitic and islamophobic incidents all over Europe over the past few days. Police is on high alert guarding synagogues and mosques, and even quite a few previously respected members of the academia have turned out to be
Read 5 tweets
Oct 1
Do the people saying ‘Ukrainians don’t deserve our support because they’re racist’ realise that what they’re actually saying is ‘I’m okay with Ukrainians of colour and Ukraine’s indigenous Crimean people dying under russian missiles and under occupation but I draw the line
at a handful of viral videos of racist assholes being racist assholes’? Look, I’m always hesitant to approach this subject because I’m a white Ukrainian who hasn’t lived through the experiences Ukrainians of colour are living through, and it isn’t my place to assess how
big of an issue racism is for Ukrainian society. I’ll leave that to the wonderful Ukrainians of colour like @AliceZhuravel, who you should definitely follow. But what I don’t get is how the indiscriminate slaughter of Ukrainian civilians from all ethnic and social backgrounds
Read 4 tweets
Sep 24
Alright, I can’t ignore whatever the holy hell happened in the Canadian Parliament (because the entire internet definitely isn’t going to, either), but I really don’t want this to spiral into a whole discussion, so I’m going to say what I think and turn the comments off. Yes,
it’s a pretty cowardly thing to do, and I’ve mocked quite a few people for doing the same, but let me just protect my inner peace for ONCE. So, to recap: Zelenskyy had a trip to Canada this weekend, and made an address to their Parliament, and all went well but they decided to
also invite a very, very old guy from the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS (aka the ‘Galician’), which was a military division of Ukrainian and Slovak nazi collaborators. Obviously, OBVIOUSLY every single person who hates Ukrainians is having a fucking field day with
Read 12 tweets
Sep 1
As a Ukrainian leftist, lemme tell you exactly how a ‘prolonged war’ is going to affect us: it’ll mean that we’re not being tortured under occupation, all of our cities won’t be razed to the ground like Mariupol was, and we won’t be forced to join an ethnofacist state.
And don’t get me wrong. I absolutely don’t want a prolonged war. I don’t *want* to spend my nights listening to missiles explode all over my city. I don’t *want* to worry about my child having to go down to his daycare’s basement whenever an air raid alert is on. Nobody wants
that. I don’t want to see constant need of friends dying. I don’t want to see my country’s economy in free fall. I don’t want to spend half my income on fundraisers to buy drones and tourniquets. If russian soldiers decided to pack up and go home TODAY I’d be the happiest
Read 10 tweets

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