The President’s Office decided to replace the traditional military parade on Independence Day with the March of Dignity. They say veterans can join the representatives of various types of troops that will march down Khreshchatyk led by the leadership of the state. And there will also be doctors, teachers, and athletes. Read further in the Reactions.
So, what is Zelensky’s team offering? As the head of the President’s Office Andriy Bohdan noted during the briefing, by replacing the parade with a march, they seek to abandon the “traditional Soviet parade”, and organize “a European-style event” instead.
What exactly will the event look like? The representatives of different branches of the Armed Forces will march down the main street of the city. And war veterans… can join the representatives of their brigades. Doctors, teachers, athletes, diplomats, and volunteers will also take part in the march. And, of course, Zelensky himself, along with the top officials. The speech of the guarantor and “grand concert” will follow. No Soviet traditions, right?
A political expert Olesya Yakhno-Belkovskaya is convinced that the decision to hold the March of Dignity demonstrates the meaninglessness of “exchange intangible for material” argument. Thus, according to the expert, the active position of the society forced Zelensky to change his own position.
But a public activist and a blogger Andriy Smoliy reacted negatively to such an alternative to the military parade, stressing that dignity is paying tribute to the soldiers and showing the world our power and unity, and not a “grand concert”.
A veteran and a blogger Ruslan Kulyk noted that this format implies a return to the forgotten format “bread and circuses”, which implies fewer links to the war and the Ukrainian army. But the veteran said: “we will have our own march and our own holiday”.
A journalist Dmytro Lykhoviy suggested that the decision on the March of Dignity was made after the team of the president found out that the veterans decided to organize their march on Independence Day after the abolition of the parade. At the same time, the author hints that in fact, the “European” format announced by Bohdan is quite Soviet since it resembles the May Day demonstration.
Besides, Lykhoviy emphasizes the president’s PR-experts managed to outshadow the March of Freedom announced by veterans and the military, which should be headed by the commander of the Ukrainian Air Assault Forces Zabrodsky, elected to the Parliament under the lists of the ex-President Petro Poroshenko’s party. At the same time, the journalist reproached Zelensky that the “grand concert” is hardly a way to save money as promised by Ze-team while canceling the traditional military parade.
A blogger Olena Monova wrote that Bohdan’s statement about the March of Dignity is an example of actions that occur when people are afraid of losing control. Thus, the author supports the assumption of Lykhoviy that the alternative to the parade is a reaction to the unauthorized march of the Russian-Ukrainian war veterans.
The people’s deputy of the eighth convocation Sergey Vysotsky called the participation of doctors and teachers in the March of Dignity “a feature of May Day demonstration”. According to the politician, by this march, Volodymyr Zelensky undermines the honoring of heroes and levels the very phenomenon of the heroic actions of those who defended and keeps defending our independence from the Russian aggression.
A historian Olesia Isaiuk also railed against the fact that the military is just an element of the event announced by Bohdan.
A blogger Boris Nemirovski also reacted negatively to the attempt of the new government to head what they didn’t manage to cancel.
But Roman Shevchenko, a former assistant to the chairman of the State Foreign Service, is convinced that no other march, except the one presented at the briefing of Andriy Bohdan, is necessary. According to him, “porokhobots” are just trying to disturb the opposition of society to the delight of the enemy.
Reactions collected by Stepan the Goat