I would like to write about some nice 18xx title that I have been playing recently, but unfortunately, for a few days, I have been putting all my time and energy into what is happening 180 kilometers from me. This is where the border with Ukraine is, the place where the war with Russia begins. The real war is still ahead, the biggest battles are taking place in the vicinity of Kiev, which is 1000 kilometers away. Nevertheless, over 500,000 people have passed through our border so far. Refugees from Ukraine, mainly mothers with children who seek protection, who want to save their lives. And I have the impression that all of Poland has come together to help these people. I read amazing reports about people who go to the border to fetch refugees and wait there for many hours because there are too many people willing to help them in relation to people who are in need. For example, I will say that I was surprised to hear the announcement not to donate blood, because the number of blood donors exceeded the needs and blood has its expiry date. It is similar to transport, gifts, and fundraisers. The willingness to help is enormous and I am extremely proud of my nation.
What is happening is not just a physical war, such as one in which people are dying. It is also a war in cyberspace. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is the first war that hundreds of millions of people follow live on social media, just as the 1991 War in the Gulf was the first war to be watched live on TV.
This time, however, unlike Iraq, Russia is conducting a spectacular fight on the Internet, on radio and television, changing the facts, trying to convince the Russians that this is not a war but a rescue operation. They create such a vision in their media, and they do not allow the Russians to read other information, and many of them do not know what is really going on.
To prevent misinformation, Ukraine has created an English-language website that only publishes information that has been confirmed by Ukrainian authorities: https://war.ukraine.ua
Russia shows such a degree of unpreparedness, ignorance of human life (of its own soldiers), and poor morale of them that I believe in Ukraine. But Ukraine is fighting alone, alone small country against big Russia. Ukraine is fighting for all of us, for the entire free world, if it does not stop Russia now, no country will be able to feel safe. That is why now he needs as much support as possible, from every side, from every country.
That’s why I joined thousands of people who virtually visit restaurants in various places in Russia via Google Map and leave their feedback there. My opinion is a short message to show at least part of the truth, plus some photos. I heard in the media that a million such opinions were issued in one day! One million virtual meals or purchases made!
Older people who do not have the Internet and for whom the only source of their information is television or radio will not find out about this action, but I hope that if thanks to me, at least one person goes to the streets there in Russia, this effort will pay off. If you want to join this action, you have to remember that such a description must be prepared in Russian, also the language in Google Maps should be changed to Russian.
To support Ukraine I decided to donate the auction proceeds of one of the games from my shelf. It is a new, still foiled copy of the 18CZ. I ordered this title six months ago, but due to various perturbations related to the production and shipping of the new edition, I got the game a few days ago after the war broke out.
I add all the components from our store to the game: trays, wooden tokens with applied stickers and trays stickers too. Shipping is free. Unfortunately, due to the fact that some delivery channels do not work yet, I will not be able to send the game to South America, New Zealand and Africa.
The auction takes place on the BGG website at this address: https://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/296928/rob-ukraine-charity-auction
To participate, you need to enter an amount in the new post.
Auction end date: March 8, 11:00 EST time
This help, which has exploded on an amazing scale, despite the fact that it now seems sufficient, will still be needed badly. About 100,000 people cross our border every day. Some estimates say 5-7 million people will be fleeing the war. Most of them declare their will to stay in Poland.
Finally, a few interesting facts published by Ukrainian branches:
- Up to date list of Equipment Losses During The 2022 Russian Invasion Of Ukraine https://twitter.com/oryxspioenkop/status/1498626053270552577
- New Ukrainian song about their Bayraktar TB2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SbVNJ2WR1w
- The Ukrainians have released a recording showing that the Russian occupiers have food out of date by as much as seven years https://twitter.com/ContactUpn/status/1498412218924290048
- Buildings in NYC owned by Russian oligarchs: https://twitter.com/JStrozyk69/status/1499058238276440068
- The largest Eastern European media: https://twitter.com/nexta_tv
One of the stories from Poland (by Andrzej):
I returned! Massively tired, physically, mentally and emotionally, but I feel that I did the mission completed.
Let me throw you a story for Sunday
There are wonderful people living abroad who are just bleeding out and are being murdered by Putin’s Russia.
As you know, yesterday I went to Ukraine to help evacuate women and children. I managed to evacuate 10 people from Lviv to the Polish border in several rounds.
Finally, I landed in the 15 km line to the border crossing. After a quick calculation, I had a minimum of 24 hours of waiting. My traveling companions embraced the bus to cross the border on foot because it was faster. I was left alone and just sitting there, moving a few meters every hour. After about 4 hours, a car on beacons was driving along the line and they spoke to every car in the line. When it reached me, the Ukrainian said something in their language.
I replied: “I don’t understand, I’m a Pole”
He replied: “Pole? Then listen, turn on the flashers and drive along the line to the border. If my colleagues in vests like mine stop you, say that you are Polish. Thank you for your help.”
I walked along the line. After a kilometer I found his friend and, according to the guidelines, I said that I was a Pole. He asked where I was going from, we talked for a while about what I had managed to do.
He said “wait a minute”
He called a colleague and I was escorted along the entire length of the queue, up to the border 😳
I, a 40-year-old guy, cried my eyes out for the entire 15 kilometers …
What wonderful people they are and they know what we do for them!
It is still a riddle at the end: What to say to the woman sitting on the seat next to her, shedding tears and asking: “why are they killing us, we only want to live, work and sometimes play?”
You know? Cause I didn’t fucking know …