CBN News senior international correspondent George Thomas has seen firsthand the horrific devastation of the war in Ukraine, but he has also witnessed “heroic” acts by ordinary citizens who have risked their lives to help meet the urgent needs of their fellow countrymen and get them to safety.
“Not just the Church, but everybody in this country that has banded together,” has been heroic, Thomas said in a Zoom interview with ALL ISRAEL NEWS.
Thomas, who has been in Ukraine for six weeks now, was also there in 2014 during the Maidan revolution and invasion of Crimea. He told us that before the Russian invasion on Feb. 24, no one sensed that war was on their doorstep.
But if Russia had hoped to divide Ukraine or its citizens, so far the invasion has backfired, he observed.
“If [Russian President] Vladimir Putin, in his aspirations to invade and conquer Ukraine, thought he could divide Ukrainians, 27 days in, Ukraine is united as never before and Ukrainians are banding together to help complete strangers.”
“For them, at the end of the day, it is about the survival of their nation, of their land borders,” Thomas said. “It’s the clarion call I’ve been hearing all throughout my month and a half here, that this is not necessarily about joining NATO or about European Union membership. This is about freedom.”
Thomas describes the "seismic" geopolitical fallout the invasion has caused and offers an analytical view of the history plus the current state of play across Ukraine – which cities have fallen and which areas are cut off by the Russian military.
While there, Thomas is also reporting on the humanitarian response of faith communities and individual Ukrainian citizens, as well as international organizations including CBN’s own Operation Blessing and Orphan’s Promise.
Ukrainians are deeply religious, he said, and are drawing from their strong belief system.
“Since the fall of Communism and since Ukraine’s independence, Ukraine has experienced tremendous religious freedom. In fact, today Ukraine is the largest missionary-sending country in Eastern Europe and Central Asia,” Thomas noted.
Nicole Jansezian, news editor of ALL ISRAEL NEWS, and Thomas also talk shop about what it is like to be a war correspondent and the responsibility involved in verifying reports and getting at the truth during the "fog of war."
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.