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The BoF Podcast | The Fight for Ukraine: Where It Stands and Why It Matters

CNN chief international correspondent Clarissa Ward spoke at BoF VOICES 2022 about victory and grief in the crisis, and what the international community must do to stand with the Ukrainian people.
BoF Voices Clarissa Ward

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Background:

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine transformed grain fields into battlefields, levelled whole cities and triggered a global food and energy crisis. Even as Ukraine has pushed back Russian forces, there appears to be no end in sight to the conflict.

After weeks and months of occupation Ukrainian cities liberated from Russian troops have experienced “jubilation” while “victory looks very grim and very dark and very empty,” Clarissa Ward, chief international correspondent CNN, said in the opening talk of BoF VOICES 2022.

“While there is no question that Ukraine is in a sense winning this war, it is coming at a very bitter cost,” she said.

This week on The BoF Podcast, Ward shares a frontline perspective from Ukraine and what the international community can do to unify its response.

Key Insights:

  • Ward believes that the war in Ukraine has taken on a “David and Goliath dynamic” as fighting turns against Russia. “I think it’s really important when we talk about war and we think about war, that we don’t get carried away with the kind of football game excitement analogy,” says Ward.
  • During her time in Ukraine, Ward has seen both the resilience of Ukrainians but also the grief from mothers losing sons on the front line and in civilian deaths. “It’s so easy to get carried away with these stories of bravery,” says Ward. “But underpinning that is the real trauma.”
  • While no international forces have entered the war on Ukraine’s side, Ward states that the country’s allies must remain united in providing humanitarian aid and military assistance. “Ukraine’s international backers really need to have a very clear, cogent and coherent sense and a unified sense of what exactly they want to see of how they would like to see this end,” says Ward.

Additional Resources:

  • BoF VOICES 2022: Finding Optimism in an Unsteady World: From the Ukraine War to the climate crisis to the legacy of the pandemic, speakers including CNN’s Clarissa Ward, Mercy Corps’ Tjada D’Oyen McKenna, Goldman Sachs’ Tim Ingrassia and Google X’s former chief business officer Mo Gawdat discussed the uncertainty gripping the world — and why there’s cause for hope.
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