Interview with Andrii Sharaskin, aka Bohema. Cyborg, combat soldier with the Volunteer Ukrainian Corps, Pravyi Sektor
On Elections: First, vote with your heart, vote for someone trustworthy, resist the temptation to feel that one person cannot accomplish anything. If everyone voted honestly, such a groundswell would result in many changes.
On the Donetsk airport: The Donetsk Airport holds a much greater significance than the Brest Fortress that was once defended for 8 days, or other fortified positions we know about from the history of the Second World War, defended for one or two months. The Donetsk airport has been defended now for five months.
The Donetsk airport,without being distracted by the fact that it has been ruined, will not ever be surrendered. That’s the first point. Second, we are doing all we can to keep pressure on the military command for assistance, and we do have support, from the 79, 95, and 93 brigades. They are with us, with the fighters of Pravyi Sektor, until the end.
It is completely untrue to think that the Donetsk airport can easily be seized. Imagine how much military hardware has been brought here, how many combat troops are engaged against the separatists and Russian mercenaries. There simply isn’t enough land beside the new terminal to bury all those who make any attempt to take the airport from us, such is our resolve.
On Politics: With regard to politics, the system most definitely needs to be changed, but given the reality, it needs to be changed from within.
Whether we like it or not, those who are our politicians and bureaucrats are the ones we have to work with. And whether they like it or not, they need to be as intensely involved in their area of responsibilities as possible, campaigning and winning seats in parliament, as has been done this year, or will need to be done next year in the local elections.
War and Ukraine: We do not fight for money, we do not fight for glory as participants of the ATO or of combat. We are fighting for an idea. It is disheartening for me when I consider that perhaps 80% of civilians, especially strong, healthy men, continue to deceive themselves into thinking that the war cannot come to them. They say, “This isn’t my war; this is a war for politicians to solve; this war concerns other people.” While it is true, and this is my experience, that war becomes real when it becomes personal, we don’t have to wait for that to happen. War becomes real when our hearts are affected by it, at that moment when someone close to us has been lost in battle. That’s what happened to me.
However, it would be a greater loss if now, at this time, people kept waiting until the war came closer to their individual lives. It is horrible already to witness the young mothers here, with young children, searching for food. It is terrible already to see the elderly, the pensioners, hiding in shells of buildings during renewed shelling. We are their only source for food and medicine, from us and from the regular army.
There is no need to wait any longer, before this terror reaches into central Ukraine or western Ukraine. We live in one and the same country. The war is already in our country.
We need men to realize that there is work here for real men to be doing, and as men, we need the help of women to be doing the work that only women can do, supporting us in this noble cause.