At Least 60 Feared Dead After Russia Bombs Ukrainian School – Opinion

Ukraine says that Russians attacked a Ukrainian school on Saturday. At least 60 children who were hiding in the building were killed. Ukraine deems it a “brutal war crime”:

It took place in Bilohorivka where 90 civilians were hiding. Newsweek has the following:

Serhiy Haidai, the governor of the Luhansk region, said 90 people had been sheltering in the school’s basement when the building was attacked. According to him, the bomb had not been dropped from an airplane but was a blast.

In a post on Telegram alongside pictures of the devastation, Haidai said “almost the entire village was hiding” in the school’s basement.

Haidai also wrote that Russian bombardment killed two children, aged 11 and 14 in Pryvillia.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had been warning citizens that attacks would likely increase leading up to Russia’s Victory Day holiday, which celebrates the 1945 surrender of Nazi Germany. Zelensky said that Russia was looking for some military success to commemorate the occasion. It’s not clear how blowing up a bunch of civilians would help that cause, but Putin’s mind moves in mysterious—and murderous—ways.

In World War Two, Ukraine fought with the Soviet Union. On Sunday, Victory Day, Zelensky grew emotional:

Darkness has returned to Ukraine decades after World War Two… The evil has returned. In a different form, under different slogans, but for the same purpose… 

It has been organized a bloody recreation of Nazism. Fanatical imitators of the regime. Its ideas, actions, words and symbols…

Everything will be overcome. We know that because all of our soldiers and civilians are descendents from those who defeated Nazism, we can be certain this.

The news of the bombing broke on the same day it was revealed that First Lady Jill Biden made a surprise visit to Ukraine for Mother’s Day, sitting down with Ukraine’s first lady, Olena Zelenska. Biden said:

I wanted to come on Mother’s Day. I felt it important to tell the Ukrainian people this war must end and the war has been cruel and to let them know that the United States stands by the peoples of Ukraine.

The NY Post reports that Zelenska and her children have remained in hiding since it became clear that one of Putin’s goals was to have Zelensky and his family assassinated.

The school bombing is just the latest tragedy in the months-long war that’s cost thousands of lives and untold suffering. NATO officials estimate that between 7,000-15,000 Russian soldiers have died in the conflict. However, Ukraine officials say that it has been closer to 15,000.

The United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner, meanwhile, reported that through March 23, 1,035 Ukrainians were killed and 1,650 injured.

We may not know accurate casualty tallies for years, but no matter the count, it’s a sad situation. Zelensky was right— the evil has returned.

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