Yesterday, February 24th, a host of figures from the world of music and entertainment shared their horrified reactions to the Russian invasion of Ukraine that launched in the early hours of the morning, whilst much of western Europe was still sleeping.
Ukraine has now declared martial law as well as ordering all men between 18 and 60 to stay in the country, with many going to the border to drop their families off before returning to join in with the defence of their country. Added to this, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has stayed in the country, spearheading the fight, regardless of being Russia’s “target number one”. Ukraine’s allies are locked in tense diplomatic conversation about how to react.
One thing has been made very clear though, Russia will be facing the toughest economic sanctions it has ever faced.
Today, the Russian capital Kyiv is under attack, and a tank assault is expected to come later today. A summary posted this morning in The Guardian read: “Ukraine expects a Russian tank attack later on Friday which could become the hardest day in the war, an adviser to Ukraine’s interior minister said.” It has been reported that 137 people have died and 316 have been wounded as of this morning.
In an address broadcast late last night, Zelenskiy criticised the western powers for not acting quick enough, lamenting that Ukraine has been “left alone to defend our state”. Today, the world watches on as Ukraine defends herself on numerous different fronts, with the Russian army also reported to be entering the country through neighbouring Belarus. Russian President Putin has claimed that the mission is on peacekeeping grounds, but to everyone else, this is an act of aggression on their democratic neighbour.
For anyone worried about NATO landing troops on the ground, this looks unlikely. It will be by using soft power that this war is fought by the west. US President, Joe Biden, has pledged “severe” sanctions on Russia, declaring in a statement that the country is “suffering an unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces” and that “Putin has chosen a premeditated war that will bring a catastrophic loss of life and human suffering”.
Adding to this shocking sentiment held by world leaders, UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson called the conflict in Ukraine “a catastrophe for our continent”.
Yesterday, the reaction to the crisis in Ukraine was one of universal horror, with many of the most prominent figures in music and entertainment posting their thoughts and support for Ukraine on social media. These include Foals frontman Yannis Philippakis, Oli Sykes of Bring Me The Horizon, Amanda Palmer, Tim Burgess, and Franz Ferdinand mastermind, Alex Kapranos.