War reveals heroes

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It doesn’t happen often, but heroes have emerged in the last week.

Hero, of course, is a much overused word. Politicians are quick to label people heroes in hopes of boosting their own popularity. But war often produces — or reveals — the real thing, as we’ve seen in Ukraine.

Last Friday, Ukrainian soldier Vitaly Volodymyrovych volunteered to blow up a bridge to prevent Russian tanks from entering his country.

It was a suicide mission.

“Our brother was killed,” the Ukrainian military said in a statement. “His heroic act significantly slowed down the push of the enemy.”

Russian despot Vladimir Putin should see this soldier’s valor and realize the resolve of the Ukrainian people.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has displayed his own brand of heroism. Like Winston Churchill before him, he has stared down the enemy and refused to blink.

Here’s how the Toronto Star described President Zelenskyy’s leadership:

“In a world full of sham tough guys, Volodymyr Zelenskyy has turned out to be the real deal.

“The Ukrainian president, his country under siege by Russia, his capital of Kyiv battered by missiles, his own life in danger, has been over recent days the very model of calm, absolute composure, unshakable resolve, understated courage and, most important, inspiration.

“No Hollywood producer could have made a war epic to top Zelenskyy’s selfie video from the heart of Kyiv. In it, the president’s percussive repetition of the word “here” told viewers where he was. And where he was staying.

“‘We are here,’ he said. ‘We are in Kyiv. We are protecting Ukraine.

“‘Our army is here. Our civil society is here. We are all here.’”

Thank God that Ukraine has such a leader during this time.

• • •

My niece, Marilyn, is married to a wonderful man from Ukraine, Igor Kholobayev.

An engineer, Igor is as smart as they come. And he’s more than kind when everyone in our family bugs him to troubleshoot problems with our computers or our cars.

This week, our family has been praying for Igor’s parents who are reluctant to leave Kyiv. Igor wants to meet them in a neighboring country, maybe Poland, and bring them to North Carolina.

For now, they are staying put.

Forgive the personal plea, but we hope some of you will join us in praying for their safekeeping.

• • •

Though he’s not dodging bullets, American billionaire Elon Musk has emerged as somewhat of a hero during the war in Ukraine.

Responding to a request from Ukraine’s vice prime minister, Mr. Musk has activated his Starlink satellite service in Ukraine and has sent the country terminals to access the service.

We don’t know how much this has helped Ukraine’s communications (an article Monday by The Atlantic suggests most people won’t have access). But in the hands of key military and civilian leaders, maybe Mr. Musk is making a huge difference.

He certainly deserves credit for doing his part.

• • •

Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington was the February Porker of the Month.

The non-partisan Citizens Against Government Waste singled out the three-term Democrat “for trying to allocate COVID relief funds for his own Green New Deal.”

As CAGW reported, “Congress has appropriated more than $4.6 trillion in response to COVID-19 and Gov. Inslee wants to use $627 million of the amount allocated to Washington to fight climate change. His spending plan includes clean building standards, rebates for buying electric vehicles, and $187 million for salmon recovery. This is another example of how billions of dollars are being used for programs that have nothing to do with the pandemic.”

Contact Bart Adams at badams@mydailyrecord.com.

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