Is the West Providing a Hopeful Model for Ukraine’s LGBT?


Rallying on Maidan square during protests against the Viktor Yanukovych government, Ukraine’s LGBT community hoped that western integration might eventually help promote social equality and tolerance.  But now, five years later, some wonder whether the West offers such a hopeful and optimistic model for the future.  Take, for example, post-Brexit […]

Ukraine’s “Davos of the East”: An Eyewitness Account


What is it like to hobnob with the some of the most powerful figures among the world’s political and financial elite?  Recently, I had an opportunity as a member of the media to attend the Yalta European Strategy (YES) conference in Kyiv, a kind of “Davos of the East” gathering […]

Kyiv’s Murals: Sorting Through Historical and Political Identity


In the post-Maidan era, Kyiv has witnessed the proliferation of murals which dot the sides of buildings throughout the capital.  Many murals underscore Ukraine’s search for historical and political meaning.  Take, for example, Mata Ruda’s “Protectress,” located just a block away from Maidan square.  The mural depicts Berehynia, a Slavic […]

Ukrainian Identity: Welcome to Zoloti Vorota


In the wake of the Maidan revolution, Ukraine is in the midst of historic and nationalist soul searching.  For starters, head to Zoloti Vorota or Golden Gates in downtown Kyiv, which was the original site of 11th century fortifications dating to the era of Yaroslav the Wise.  The area was […]

Russian Revolution at 100: Welcome to Kronstadt Revolt


The Kronstadt rebellion took place in March, 1921.  Located on an island in the Gulf of Finland, Kronstadt is a naval fortress on an island in the Gulf of Finland which has served as the base of the Russian Baltic Fleet and to guard the city of St. Petersburg thirty-five […]

Viktor Yanukovych’s Estate


On the outskirts of Kyiv lies Mezhyhirya estate, former home to deposed President Viktor Yanukovych.  The gaudy surroundings attest to Yanukovych’s corrupt and opulent lifestyle.  Today, however, many visitors simply opt to ride bicycles through the local park or pose for selfies.  Yanukovych’s house is closed, and actually getting to […]