Ternopil, Ukraine — As the train bringing the wounded soldier home from the front line grinds to a halt, the crowd on the platform bursts into patriotic song. Maj. Ruslan Androsyuk’s three-year-old son jumps into his arms, unsteadying him as he limps from the carriage.
Relatives and friends wave balloons and Ukrainian flags, welcoming Major Androsyuk back after a mine ripped through his armored personnel carrier in the Donetsk region, leaving him with a broken leg, fractured ribs, and pierced lungs. “If it wasn’t for his bulletproof vest he wouldn’t have survived,” says his wife Olga, choking back tears.
But it wasn't Ukraine's government that supplied Androsyuk his gear. Like hundreds of other soldiers fighting against pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, his equipment was provided by the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC).
...The UGCC's direct role in the conflict is substantial. The powerful UGCC dioceses of Lviv and Ternopil have donated over $200,000 worth of equipment since March to Ukrainian forces, mostly body armor, ammunition, helmets, sleeping bags, stretchers, and medical supplies, official church records show.
Read the rest here.
HT: Ordo Antiquus
In fairness there is little doubt that some of the Orthodox churches are also meddling to varying degrees on both sides, with the canonical Church backing the Russians and the schismatics backing the nationalists. But it has become fashionable for Catholics to pretend that it is only the evil Orthodox who are interfering, and of course this is simply not true. The UGCC has been involved up to its eyeballs in the anti-Russian Ukrainian nationalist movement from its inception.
From my perspective this low intensity civil war is a spectacular tragedy and an indictment of all the major churches in Ukraine, none of whom have clean hands in this business.