Kyiv, Ukraine. 28th February 2014
"Only a man with unbelievable spiritual strength can fight a machine gun with a stick for his country."
28th February 2014.
They had won. They had reclaimed the capital as their own. The people owned the streets. They had just won a revolution fought with sticks and stones against armed riot police and snipers and they lost many people in the fight.
The sound of chopping wood is all around and the smoke piping from the top of every tent fills your hair and clothes. Soup bubbles and girls giggle as they chop lemon for the tea. The barricades that had sprung up over the preceding weeks and months were made from the very city itself: benches; advertising hoardings; cobblestones and fences. Parliament is now guarded by a peopleâ€™s defence group, City Hall is the Revolutionary Headquarters - a bed for the night in the council chamber, free soup and salad in the makeshift canteen in the foyer. The atmosphere is communal and positive and people are willing to stay put for another 3 months or more to ensure they get a leadership that represents them.
The next day Russia invaded Ukrainian territory.
"Putin underestimates us. He forgets that after the war the west of Ukraine fought for their independence against the Soviets for 15 years and didn't lie down."