1. Starting in January, I heard stories from friends with relatives in Russia. Their relatives would call and ask whether it was true that people in Lviv were beaten in the streets for speaking Russian.
Ridiculous. There is even a Russian street musician. (Perhaps he’s paid by the FSB to Russify Lviv.)
2. Another friend who works in a hostel told me a Russian family stayed there for a week, barely leaving their room except to the grocery store because, she later discovered, they feared Ukrainian fascists would attack them. These accounts are so divorced from reality, I wouldn’t believe them if they weren’t first-hand accounts.
3. A close friend of mine has relatives from Donbass. It was either an immediate aunt, or a sibling of a grand parent who moved there and had a family.
Now, the decedent’s daughter has returned to Lviv, her ancestral home, as a refugee. She fled with husband and children. My friend’s family helped them get settled.
She too was SCARED to speak Russian despite assurances from her hosts. Later, their daughters were playing together — two little children. Eventually, the refugee child from Donbas started speaking Ukrainian, and her mother, right in front of everybody, told her not to use that Khokhol language.
“Khokhol” is an insulting word Russians use for Ukrainian people. Apparently, her hosts had enough at that point, and told her pretty angrily what an ungrateful, Russian-zombified bitch she was being. Her behavior improved.
4. If you look through the videos I posted here and elsewhere, you’ll encounter raw footage of Russian mercenaries who believe they are fight Poles, Czechs, Blackwater, American military, Abrams tanks, Apache helicopters. These people are f-ing idiots. It’s be funny if it wasn’t so dangerous.