Українські жінки беруть участь в опорі і мають брати участь у мирних перемовинах: результати нового опитування

Жінки є «невід’ємною частиною країни та її опору» – з таким посланням звернулася до світу президент організації «Ла Страда-Україна» Kaтeринa Чeрeпaхa,  виступаючи перед Радою Безпеки ООН у квітні.

У своєму виступі вона також підкреслила високу вразливість жінок і дівчат щодо загроз викрадення, катувань та вбивств. Тепер ми знаємо, що жінки в Україні також стоять перед загрозою сeксуaльного насильства.

Photo: Atlantic Council / Eurasia Center

Водночас Катерина Черепаха застерегла від ставлення до українок лише як до жертв російської воєнної агресії. Фокусування на жінках насамперед як на жертвах нiвелює їхню свободу дій та внесок і роль у війні, що триває. Педалювання стереотипних уявлень про жінок як про жертв може лише посилити ідеї про необхідність культури захисту, що применшує свободу дії і силу жінок.Read More

Ukrainian Women Engage in Resistance and Should Be in the Peace Talks: New Survey Evidence

Women are an “integral part of her country and its resistance.” This was the message that Kateryna Cherepakha, President of the organization La Strada-Ukraine, communicated to the world when speaking before the UN Security Council in April.

Her speech also highlighted increased vulnerability of women and girls to the threat of kidnapping, torture and killing. We now know that the threats to women in Ukraine also include being targets of sexual violence.

Photo: Atlantic Council / Eurasia Center

Yet, Cherepakha warned against viewing Ukrainian women as mere victims of the Russian military aggression. Focusing on women primarily as victims disguises their agency and contributions in the ongoing war. Fortifying stereotypical assumptions of women as victims only can reinforce ideas about the need for a protective culture in which women’s agency and power are belittled.Read More

Digital Humanitarianism in a Kinetic War: Taking Stock of Ukraine

The war in Ukraine – which can be described as an info-kinetic conflict – is the first war in a society with a relatively mature digital economy, a substantial tech sector (including a diaspora tech sector) and a high adoption rate of technology and digital platforms.

From a peace and conflict studies perspective, as of mid-spring 2022, the war in Ukraine can be understood as an information war, a war through digital diplomacy, a cyberwar, and the first war where Big Tech has actively taken a side.

Illustration: TechCrunch

For those working on the narrower topic of the digital transformation of the humanitarian sector and the politics of humanitarian technology, the initial phase of the ongoing war in Ukraine points to a number of issues that need to be better understood.Read More

No Sensible End-Game for Russia in the Badly Mismanaged War

Predictions of a decisive offensive in Donbass and speculations about peace talks have gained new intensity in both Russian propaganda and Western commentary last week – and neither makes much sense.

Artillery and air strikes on the solid Ukrainian defense lines in several key directions on the battle for Donbass have escalated, but Russian battalions, exhausted by two months of unexpectedly hard fighting (and two moths of winter camping prior to invasion) are unable to gain any ground.

Borodyanka, Ukraine, Tuesday, April 5, 2022. AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda/Flickr/CC BY-2.0

The visit to Moscow and Kyiv scheduled by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres for this week (after both countries celebrated Orthodox Easter) is well-intended but most probably fruitless, as President Volodymyr Zelensky can only confirm his readiness to meet with President Vladimir Putin and the latter will blame Ukraine for sabotaging negotiations and reiterate the message given to Charles Michel, President of the European Council (RIA-Novosti, April 22).Read More

Failure Looms Over Russia’s Decisive Offensive in Donbas

Triumphalist rhetoric coming out of Moscow notwithstanding, Russia’s war in Ukraine is not progressing according to plan (see EDM, April 11).

Nevertheless, President Vladimir Putin repeated yet again last week (April 12) that the central objective of the massive re-invasion of Ukrainian territory starting on February 24 purportedly was always limited to seizing the whole of the Donbas region (Kommersant, April 12).

A Ukrainian soldier walks past a Russian vehicle destroyed in a fire fight. Photo: Ivor Prickett for The New York Times / Flickr / CC BY-2.0

It took plenty of careful persuasion from the top brass to impress upon him three weeks ago that Russia’s thrice-revised original plan to capture Kyiv — by a swift attack, or a forceful breakthrough, or a long siege — could not be implemented. And notably, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has not made a single public statement or international contact since this retreat.

The allegedly newly appointed commander of Russian forces in Ukraine, Army General Aleksandr Dvornikov (Russian sources remain mum about his promotion), is presumably responsible for executing a decisive offensive in Donbas. But this latest push could well also turn out to be mission impossible (Meduza, April 13; see EDM, April 13).Read More

Putin Is Staking His Political Future on Victory in Ukraine – and Has Little Incentive to Make Peace

Despite stop-and-start peace talks, a resolution to the brutal war in Ukraine appears distant.

Putin celebrating the anniversary of Crimea’s reunification with Russia. Moscow, March 2022.
Photo: The Russian Presidential Press and Information Office

Major cities in Ukraine are faltering. Civilians, including children, are dying of shrapnel and glass wounds, exposure and thirst.

At the same time, Ukraine’s resilience and a coordinated global response means the war is not ending as many expected before it began – with Russia’s swift victory.Read More

Russia’s Quick Victory Vanishes, as Protracted War Looks Inevitable

Russia has revised its war plan multiple times during the, so far, seven-week-long, ill-conceived large-scale invasion of Ukraine, yet it still remains incompatible with both tactical imperatives and political ambitions.

Ukrainian soldiers inspecting the charred remains of a Russian military convoy in Bucha. Photo: Daniel Berehulak /NYT/Flickr/CC BY-2.0

The consecutive revisions themselves have been flawed in different ways: if the initial “Blitzkrieg” design was based on the assumption that the Ukrainian military would disintegrate, the follow-up proposition for laying siege to Kyiv presumed that the government would capitulate, while the order to execute a breakthrough toward Odesa mistakenly took for granted that Ukraine’s most important seaport had been left undefended.Read More

Different Responses to Mobility at Europe’s Borders

In the weeks since Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine significant proportions of Ukraine’s population has gone on the move, the majority of whom are internally displaced.

By 29th March 2022, 4 million people had fled Ukraine across borders to neighbouring countries: Poland (2 million in 3 weeks), Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Moldova (some reportedly to Russia).

Ukrainian refugees from 2022, crossing into Poland. Photo: via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 4.0

In this blog post, we aim to contribute to the ongoing comparative reflections on the European Union’s response to sudden and large-scale arrivals of people across its borders, in 2015 and now.Read More

Why Widespread Sexual Violence Is Likely in Ukraine

Sexual violence has not received much attention in the coverage of the war in Ukraine. However, reports of cases of sexual violence by Russian or pro-Russian soldiers are just starting to appear.

Photo: IStock

Some human rights organizations in Ukraine have already warned about this risk. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba recently claimed that Russian soldiers have committed rapes. Norway’s representative Mona Juul recently issued a warning about sexual violence in Ukraine in the UN Security Council. As a researcher on wartime sexual violence, this warning is merited.Read More

A Pope’s Dilemma

Pope Francis has condemned the war in Ukraine in strong words.

Pope Francis with a flag from Bucha. Photo: the Vatican

He dismisses the assertion of Putin’s propaganda that it merely involves “military operations,” and instead condemns it as a war that causes “death, destruction, and distress.”

But as head of the Catholic church and its diplomatic arm the “Holy See,” he has not confronted Putin directly. Francis has avoided mentioning “Putin” or “Russia” in his speeches.

Why does the Pope not go further, condemning the invasion and affirming Ukraine’s right to armed self-defense?

Read More