What are the Ukrainian grandparents' names

Vassili Golod on the Ukraine conflict"The solution is a verbal Disarm"

For three years, pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian government troops have been fighting each other in eastern Ukraine. Over 10,000 people have already died. And this war is raging right in the middle of the family of journalist Vassili Golod. He is from Ukraine - but his relatives are Russians and Ukrainians.

Vassili Golod is a journalist, 24 years old and lives in Cologne. His mother is from Russia, his grandparents still live there. He himself was born in Ukraine. His father is Ukrainian. An uncle lives in the Crimea. The Ukraine conflict runs right through his family.

This is how Russian grandparents think

His Russian grandparents mainly use Russian state television to find out about the conflict in Ukraine, which is why the information is often distorted. For example, you say that it is clear that cities like Donetsk or Lugansk could never belong to Ukraine again. His grandparents believe that the people who live there have absolutely no desire to belong to "this crazy country" again, says Vassili.

"My grandparents' gaze is a bit downward. But of course my grandma has extreme pity for the people. She says there shouldn't be war there. And she says Russia is the only country that wants to end this bloodshed." Above all, all of this reflects the perspective of Russian state television.

This is what the Ukrainian father thinks

Vassili's father lives in Germany, but spent most of his life in Ukraine. Above all, he would like Ukraine to democratize, says Golod. It is no secret that Ukraine has problems with corruption, reforms that are long overdue are not taking place. "Economically it is extremely tough for the people in Ukraine, everything has become more expensive and the standard of living is falling," says Vassili.

In addition, a lot of state money is flowing into the conflict in eastern Ukraine. Vassili's father was aware of these things and he was in no way advocating them. Vassili says that his Ukrainian relatives want Ukraine to become an independent European country. But they also see that all of these reform processes are progressing very slowly.

"The solution is first of all a verbal disarmament. So this misinformation should stop, which - from my point of view - is mainly spread on the Russian side."
Vassili Golod, journalist

Only Russia and Ukraine can resolve the conflict together

Vassili Golod believes that both sides - the Russian and the Ukrainian - could help de-escalate the conflict. He would like the Russians to have more objective, less colored reporting. This could help Russian civil society to deal more carefully with the Ukraine conflict. There it is often said: "We just want to help." The worries and needs of the Ukrainians were completely ignored.

There is a strong and reflective civil society on the Ukrainian side. However, there are incompetent politicians in office who are unable to resolve these problems.