YouTube Conflicts: Youth Debate Ukraine

There have been a number of videos published by youth and student groups from all sides of the Ukrainian conflict. Many of these have been published in response to each other. Many have English or Russian subtitles as well (click “CC” or the small, lined rectangle, in the bottom right of the screen where available).

One of the earliest videos came from students in Ukraine imploring Russian students to question what they hear on Russian TV.

It didn’t take long for Russian students to make their own video asking Ukrainian students to question what they hear on Ukrainian television.

Still another video appeared from the Ukrainian side arguing passionately against the arguments in the video made by the Russians.

Another video appeared featuring Russian students taking the Ukrainian side and asking for forgiveness for Russia.

Moldovan students, speaking both Russian and Moldovan (with Russian subtitles) joined in, asking all sides for peace.

Students from Crimea have made their own video in support of Crimea’s referendum and its merger with Russia.

Another group of students from Crimea made a similar video.

A group of law students from Saratov, Russia made a video arguing for the legality of the referendum.

Students from Lvov have made their own video, addressing specific stereotypes of their city as a center of Ukrainian nationalism, arguing for peace, and asking Russians to question what they hear.

Students from Lukhansk have made their own video, addressing specific stereotypes of their city, arguing for peace, and asking everyone to realize the war is always an ugly, painful thing.

The list of material currently flooding YouTube goes on and on. A simple search for “обращение+студентов+россия+украина” will reveal dozens – perhaps hundreds of videos, commentary on the videos, parodies of the videos, and more.

About the Author

Josh Wilson

Josh Wilson is the Assistant Director for The School of Russian and Asian Studies (SRAS) and Communications Director for Alinga Consulting Group. In those capacities, he has been managing publications and informative websites covering geopolitics, history, business, economy, and politics in Eurasia since 2003. He is based in Moscow, Russia. For SRAS, he also assists in program development and leads the Home and Abroad Programs.