Russia-Ukraine War News – Live Updates


Artem Poliukhovych, a 32-year-old Ukrainian, had been thinking about how to propose to his girlfriend for a year. He considered getting down on one knee on a tropical island beach or asking her to marry him on a hot air balloon ride. In the end, he decided to write the proposal on a Soviet-era shell aimed at the Russian military.

“It can be considered in some ways an aggressive proposal,” he said.

She said yes.” Her enthusiasm is matched by others around the world. Several hundred have paid thousands of dollars to have their words written on shells used by the Ukrainian military.

War is often steeped in gallows humor, and soldiers have long graffitied munitions intended for the enemy. Selling these messages is an inventive, if macabre, twist on the practice, another way Ukrainians have found to raise money for their underdog resistance to the Russian invasion.

One casing was labeled “This is a gay bomb.” Another read: “Fighting fascism is a full-time job.” And another was signed: “From Silicon Valley with love.”

These last tags have been sorted into Signmyrocket.comthe most prominent of several fundraising initiatives in Ukraine’s growing custom shell sector.

The fundraiser, which is called the “artillery shipment”, was set up by Anton Sokolenko, a 21-year-old IT student, to make up for falling donations to the Assistance Center for the Army, Veterans and their familiesthe charity he had started volunteering for in March.

He initially ran it on a Telegram channel, then moved to a website to allow international customers to access it. Now, he said, requests come from all over the world, with more than 95 percent of submissions in English. The website says it has raised more than $200,000 in donations in less than three months for the charity.

Buyers receive images of their message in a shell. For a higher price, the charity also offers videos as the carcass is thrown – “to show your friends or post on social media,” Mr. Sokolenko.

On the site, users can choose a weapon, write a message and then proceed to purchase. Prices range from $150 for a message on a shell to $3,000 written on the side of a tank turret.

The site says the charity has given more than 200 permanent markers to soldiers, who offered to write on the weapons and photograph the result in exchange for the cars, drones or optical equipment the charity has bought across Europe with the benefits. Mr. Sokolenko said the charity had many contacts with the military and had reached soldiers through word of mouth.

A spokeswoman for Ukraine’s defense ministry did not respond to a request for comment.

For some people, buying a message is a way to help the Ukrainian military and feel directly involved in the war effort. For others, it is an opportunity to express their anger against Russia.

Mr. Sokolenko described the process as an informal form of support for military platoons.

“It’s not very official, not very allowed,” said Mr. Sokolenko. “But they need to because we can give them things that our government can’t give them right now.”

Cristina Repetti, 32, who lives in Chicago, said she was shocked by the attack by President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia and had commissioned several shell messages for friends and family.

He expressed some discomfort with the idea that weapons could be used to kill soldiers who might be at war against their will, but his desire to help Ukraine was greater. “I can’t just sit there and do nothing”

In a shell, she commissioned the message “I love you Vinny”, hoping to get her boyfriend back.


“He likes dark romantic stuff,” she said. “And I thought putting our love in a shell that will hit a Russian tank would really make an impression.”

Source link

You May Also Like