The American Veteran discusses the devastation created by the war’s savagery.
Matt Welch worked as a Middle Eastern Cryptologic Linguist in the Marine Corps for five years and traveled throughout the Middle East and North Africa. He tracked out a lady who evacuated fleeing Ukrainians from Odesa, a port city on Ukraine’s border with Poland. Welch: Ukraine was and continues to be a different kind of battle zone than he anticipated. As we neared Odesa, we started to see more of the usual battle scars. We were readily passed through as Americans by showing our passports or explaining via our interpreter that we were there on a humanitarian trip.
The nation is not entirely unlike Europe; portions of it also resemble the United States. Replace the Orthodox chrome church domes with traditional European church steeples and disregard some of the surviving Soviet-era monuments, and you’re in Germany. Being in Ukraine was like staring out my bedroom window and witnessing my neighborhood beaten and threatened constantly, with nothing to do except watch helplessly. I noticed youngsters playing on a coastal playground while warning sirens blared, their dismay at being kept away from the seashore due to the possibility of mines washing up. Ukraine might easily be my home, and seeing its destruction crushed the portion of my heart that perceives home as a secure and holy idea.