On Monday, Lesia Vasylenko, a member of the Ukrainian parliament, spoke of her young children and the terrifying education they are getting as Russian forces attack Kyiv and its surrounding areas, saying plaintively, “The education they are getting now is about where to hide from which kind of attacks.”
“CBS Mornings” co-host Tony Dokoupil asked, “Lesia, I’m curious how old your kids are and how they are handling things.”
“I have three children,” Vasylenko replied. “My oldest is a boy; he is eight. And I have a girl who is six and another girl who is turning nine months tomorrow.”
“How are they doing?” Dokoupil queried.
Well, the baby’s doing fine because she’s a baby. The main thing is to help her parents around. My older kids, they have stress because every time they hear a siren they don’t know what’s going on. They hear the conversation around the house about Putin threatening the world with nuclear and they don’t know what it is but it sounds scary because children, they’re children, they can feel things more than hear things, and they understand the general feeling of anxiety.
And what pains me most is that this morning I woke up realizing that it’s Monday morning and my usual routine would have been to take them to school. And they were not in school; they were just making their way out from under the stairs and helping their grandparents from the cellar that we have in the house. The education they are getting now is about where to hide from which kind of attacks; where to hide from an airstrike, where to hide from a missile strike, where to hide from an artillery attack.
Lesia Vasylenko, a member of the Ukrainian parliament, tells CBS News what living in Kyiv is like for her three children during the Russian invasion: “The education they are getting now is about where to hide from which kind of attacks.” pic.twitter.com/hXP4bCAbs8
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 28, 2022
On Monday, Vasylenko begged the West, “Ok, UK, US and the rest, you don’t want to close the sky over #Ukraine. How about you give your planes to non @Nato states of #Europe and they close the sky over @Ukraine, Like this Nato won’t be at war with #Russia and Ukrainian children will be safe.”
Ok, UK, US and the rest, you don’t want to close the sky over #Ukraine. How about you give your planes to non @Nato states of #Europe and they close the sky over @Ukraine. Like this Nato won’t be at war with #Russia and Ukrainian children will be safe.Idea of @DmytroNatalukha
— Lesia Vasylenko (@lesiavasylenko) February 28, 2022
Speaking on CNN Monday morning, Vasylenko snapped, “Hell continues. Hell that was unleashed by President Putin and his huge million people army which is invading, no, infesting Ukraine from every single side. They are just moving in closer and closer on Kyiv with their tanks, with the armored vehicles … We have several simultaneous airstrike attacks.”
“Every morning, we all wake up and just are so happy to see the sky and to see the sun and to know that we are alive,” she said, as Newsweek reported. “We are alive in an independent Ukraine which is still standing. … At the moment the children, the adults are standing strong and are standing confident that the war will end and that Ukraine will win.”
“But children always ask the same question: When will this end mummy? How many more days of war? When can I go back to my home? … And that’s just the reality which I am not able to offer my children,” she concluded.
Speaking of Russian troops approaching Kyiv, she said:
As I said, they are like vermin, they are just infesting the whole country everywhere. Our armed forces are hitting their military targets, these columns of armored vehicles and tanks approaching and the Russians, they’re just keeping on the move. … They don’t even stop to pick up their bodies. We have over 5,000 Russian soldiers dead within five days of war… they are not taking out their bodies, they are not sending their dead home. This is another liability imposed on Ukraine. … We have fighter jets in the sky, we have Russian missiles in the sky … and now we have to deal with their dead and the bodies of their soldiers. This is insane. it’s like they are completely inhuman and like savages. Just pushing in with one sole task to destroy Kyiv and to destroy Ukraine.
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