The first casualty when war comes is truth

8 March 2022

Twenty-five year old Oleksandra lives in Kharkiv, a city in Ukraine, about thirty kilometres from the Russian border. Her parents live in Russia, but so far Oleksandra has failed to convince them of the danger the Russian invasion of Ukraine poses to her, and Kharkiv.

“My parents understand that some military action is happening here. But they say: ‘Russians came to liberate you. They won’t ruin anything, they won’t touch you. They’re only targeting military bases’.” While we were interviewing Oleksandra, the shelling went on. The internet connection was weak, so we had to exchange voice messages. “I’ve almost forgotten what silence sounds like. They’re shelling non-stop,” she said.