On October 20, 2014 within the framework of the project “See Ukraine with Your Own Eyes” the group of young public activists from Russia visited “Tkuma” Institute and the Holocaust Museum. Public and opposition figures, journalists, bloggers have an opporty to look at the modern Ukraine not through TV screens full of Kremlin propaganda, but during the direct visits to the country. This meeting became the 4 and gathered activists from Arkhangelsk, Moscow, Ozersk, Plios, Rostov-on-Don and Saint Pitersburg.
The guests viewed the Museum exhibition with great interest. After the guided tour conducted by Dilfuza Hlushchenko, Research Department Head, Russian activists participated in the meeting with “Tkuma” Institute and the Museum staff as well as special guest Dr Dmytro Kayuk, historian, volunteer, public activist and member of Dnipropetrovsk Commission on Renaming.
During the lively discussions Russian activists asked questions about different aspects of Ukraine’s modern life, such as the role of Dnipropetrovsl Jewish Community during the Revolution of Dignity and resistance to Russian aggression, international relations in our city and the country in general, the decommunization policy. Separately, they were interested in the position of ethnic Russians regarding today’s events. Olga Itkina, the Museum employee, shared her experience as she is not only ethnic Russian, but also patriot of Ukraine and in-mogrant from Donetsk. This story of the truly eyewitness of the tragic events in Donbas particularly impressed Russian guests, as it represented a real voice of the Donbas, which cannot be heard through the Kremlin media propaganda clichés.
Guests from Russia expressed the view that direct contacts of Russian and Ukrainian democratic forces, spread of the true information about our country, its contemporary cultural and social transformations as well as the war in the East could become a basis for overcoming the conflict, triggered by neo-imperial ideology of Russian establishment. Also, Russian activists underlined the important social role of independent research institutions, including “Tkuma” Institute, as their activity gives impetus to the formation of the civil society, mutual respect and responsibility. The participants expressed the hope that all those who wish to create a new, democratic and progressive Russia will be able to develop cooperation with the Institute “Tkuma”.