Nearly a week after Russia invaded Ukraine, New Yorkers again rallied in the heart of the city Wednesday night, pleading for an end to the conflict.
Hundreds flooded into Times Square on March 2 where they cried and roared, directing their emotion at “Mad Vlad” for being responsible for untempered death and destruction as his forces continue the onslaught on the sovereign nation.
Hoisting an effigy of the Russian president with the word “murderer” hanging about the dummy’s neck, the large crowd chanted “Stop Putin now!”
Reflected by the bright lights of Times Square, some protesters donned traditional Ukrainian floral wreaths while others lifted their shirts to reveal tattoos of support. Most heartbreaking of all, those with longstanding ties to the country wept for their people.
Seventy-year-old Olga Domalhyk-McGuinness has lived in the United States for 27 years after marrying an American. However, many of her family and friends still reside within Kyiv — the epicenter of the war zone.
Since the fighting started, Domalhyk-McGuinness has attended rally after rally, both in New York City and in Washington, calling for an end to the war. She told amNewYork Metro that she is in constant contact with her family as she fears for their safety.
“It is terrible! My heart is breaking,” Domalhyk-McGuinness said distraught, “I call them every day. [The Russian military,] they are shooting, destroying houses, killing children, killing everything, killing old people.”
Although her heart bleeds for her country, she is proud of their bravery and resilience.
“They have hope, they trust our soldiers and they are very brave. Regular men and women, students, and all of them got weapons and are fighting. They don’t even have enough weapons, so they are making special Molotov cocktails. They’ve burned tanks, they’ve burned machines. They are so brave. We have to support Ukraine, save Ukraine, and stop Putin,” Domalhyk-McGuinness added.
Ukrainian flags blocked the surrounding billboards and echoing throughout Broadway were the somber voices of protesters singing traditional Ukrainian songs all in an effort to inspire world leaders to aid the sovereign Eastern European country.
Ex-Brit turned Manhattan resident since 2008.