Shoot, scoot & reload …
The atrocities committed against Ukrainian civilians and POWs last week should serve as a stark reminder to continue to support Ukraine and to supply the Armed Forces of Ukraine with the heavy equipment they need to liberate all Ukrainian territories occupied by Russia since 2014. Russian war crimes in Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine continue to be accompanied by round-the-clock Russian rocket attacks on Ukrainian towns and cities.
However, the integration of HIMARS - the U.S.-manufactured M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems - into frontline defenses this month has finally helped Ukrainians turn the tide and begin to repel the Russian attacks. Multiple sources have documented the targeted destruction by Ukrainian forces using HIMARS efficiently on over 100 high value Russian targets such as ammunition depots, command posts, long-range artillery positions, air-defense sites, and radar and communications nodes in occupied areas of Ukraine. HIMARS have turned around Russian air superiority in this unprovoked war against Ukraine, leading to a drop in Russian missile strikes against Ukrainian civilians. It will ultimately help Ukrainian defenders focus their efforts on taking back the occupied territories and saving the people suffering there.
Other Eastern European countries are looking into procuring HIMARS to protect against future Russian attacks; they consider supplying Ukraine with more equipment to be of utmost importance now, with Lithuania’s foreign minister asserting that, “The agreement to unblock Odesa would have been impossible without HIMARS. It’s now very clear that the war will end earlier if we arm Ukraine faster.”1
In addition to countering Russian propaganda across society & on social media and keeping the pressure on our politicians about Ukraine’s ongoing need for heavy equipment, we can also help the frontlines by sending tactical gear through our donations to Mriya Aid.
“President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has praised HIMARS, the Ukrainian Army is singing about it, and the Kremlin recently made destroying them a priority. HIMARS is, like the Javelin before it, a weapon of war that has become a meme and a symbol of the wider conflict.”2 It can be said that Ukrainian musician Taras Borovok’s viral song praising the Bayraktar drone is more catchy than his new song about HIMARS, but it’s significant that the musical, cultural and creative output about the war inspires all of us to carry on and continue supporting the brave men and women on the frontlines of Ukraine.
We too can work as efficiently as the HIMARS. By taking care of ourselves and coordinating our work for Ukraine with each other, we can “shoot, scoot & reload” our way to victory while ensuring that Ukraine wins and rebuilds quickly.
SLAVA UKRAINI! HEROYAM SLAVA!
The work of visual artists also keeps the spirit of freedom-loving people across the world alive. Below are symbolic traditional embroidered shirts which were adorned with Bayraktar “birds”, and presented to the generous owners of the Barayk company, Selçuk and Haluk Bayraktar, who have recently donated Bayraktar drones to Ukraine.
Your support of Mriya Aid and your feedback and comments on Twitter and Instagram are greatly appreciated. Despite the recent 3-week summer hiatus, we hope that this edition of our weekly newsletter inspires you to keep working to help Ukraine defend the vulnerable and to win the horrible war that Russia has unleashed on Ukrainians and all freedom-loving peoples of the world.
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