While oil and gas imports from Europe to Russia are growing, the Ukrainian people are still being killed and mutilated under the guise of the so called civilian separatist struggle in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions, while Crimea remains occupied. Lithuania is not indifferent to this. Not to mention the strong support of various state institutions, ordinary representatives of society, who are concerned about security in Ukraine and Europe, contribute directly to financial and other support to Ukraine’s fight against aggressor.
The representatives of four different groups in society – the head of a public relations company, a real estate developer, a lawyer and a former Special Operations Forces officer – are are united behind the Vanagas road initiative and collecting support and going to Ukraine.
They say that for us, who suffered a brutal Soviet occupation and continued an uncompromising struggle after the war for the freedom of Lithuania, the Ukrainian struggle is especially close to our hearts and fairly understandable. It is particularly important to continue supporting Ukraine, its troops and society against the aggressor and to remind Western democracies that Russia’s ambition to redraw the map of Europe should be focused on in the NATO / EU foreign affairs agendas.
Vanagas Road initiative
Four men named after one of the resistance war commander “Vanagas [Hawk] Road” are actively collecting funds for which they are going to buy the necessary equipment in the front – drones, boots, knives, optics, tactical vests, etc. and move it by their own means.
“We want to show the people of Ukraine that the Lithuanian public – you and me – are concerned about Ukraine’s fight for freedom and democracy,” says Alkas Paltarokas, one of the members of the Vanagas Road initiative group. The project participants are planning to meet with the official representatives of the Ukrainian government to express not just the institutional but also ordinary Lithuanian people’s support, bring the equipment procured for the funds donated by the people to the Ukrainian soldiers in the front, to record the “here and now” moods of Ukrainians traveling by train from Kiev to Mariupol and those living near the front.
“We understand that the things we bring are just a drop in the ocean,” project participant Aurimas Navys smiles, “But the most important support is in our hearts. We thank the people, who support us, the Blue / Yellow, Arveka, Survival, Armijai ir Civiliams, the Riflemen Union Ukraine Support Group and everyone who mentions us with a good word.
Vanagas Road is a civil initiative aimed at educating, promoting and sustaining public patriotism, awareness and community. The Vanagas Road support project “Mission Ukraine 2019” is an independent and completely voluntary. The project group departs on 30 May.