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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Unsung heroes

I don't know how this story by Orysia Tracz slipped by me, but now that it's been brought to my attention, I can share it with you!

Remember the late 1950-mid-1960s? Remember registering to study political science and Russian at college? (Ukrainian was not offered at the time.) We were going to free Ukraine, or at least strive our damnedest to get close to that goal for our parents and for ourselves.

We were also the ones who made presentations about Ukraine in our grade schools and high schools, and explained - whether they wanted to hear it or not - that Ukraine was not Russia; no, we are not Russians; yes, we are Europeans, and a separate nation even though we are part of the USSR ... (And we were the only ones in school who had the excuse notes for being absent on January 6 and 7.)

We did this willingly, on our own, with a zeal that surprised even our parents. They were still afraid of "them." We were not. And I doubt that most of us were consciously indoctrinated with that Ukrainian patriotism. I think we got it through osmosis. We felt the pride, and the pain, and the sorrow.

I am saying "we" because I do not think that I was the only one ..

A great read, not too long (in fact the time will zing by all too fast) and a great snapshot of a generation that worked (and still does!) so hard to make it possible for the rest of us to know what we know, and be who we are, just that much better.

Article here.

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