EYE WITNESS UKRAINE: a First-Person multi-media reportage

I have just returned from Ukraine where I have been documenting continuing aspects of the offensive against Russia.

This is the most powerful of all my photo-reportages because it’s happening now around one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. And on the ground both military personnel and civilians say it could continue for another 5 -10 years. Or until Ukraine have another nuclear deterrent. Those they had they gave to Russia in 1994.

My story is somewhat different to those that have been put about by pundits and news presenters standing in flak jackets in darkness on the roof of the Intercon Hotel in Kyiv with rows of 4 x 4’s parked outside at the ready. It’s a surreal war.

In Kyiv Rigoletto is playing at the Opera House and thousands of care-free teenagers are zooming around the city on their electric scooters oblivious to the Air Raid Sirens booming out that have become a norm. Day and night. People take no notice of them.

Yet just kms away from the city centre I’ve documented unspeakable tragedies and executions that have indiscriminately taken place on civilians, with buildings and infrastructures raised to the ground. Damage to date: USD$600billion. And no insurance.

It’s like living in London’s Covent Garden yet in desirable Wimbledon and leafy Kingston-on-Thames an estimated three thousand civilians have either been shot in the streets or blown up in their apartment buildings. And then there is Mariupol and the horrific tales of those who’ve managed to escape from there.

When Ukrainians meet the English they shout out “God Save the Queen!” but they have no time for President Macron or Chancellor Scholz. Indeed there are two new buzz-words going the rounds in Kyiv at the moment: Macroning and Scholzing. Great at talking but never taking any action.

My reportage includes a number of front-line video clips that depict the offensive, both from a Ukrainian perspective as well as Russian.

In this brief outline of my reportage perhaps the final words should come from a Police Chief. “When do you think the war will end” I asked. “Only the Dick-Head (Putin) knows”!

This a story that must be told.