The Russian invasion of Ukraine has gone on for about two months now, and Russian war crimes have become more apparent. What started with bombing of civilian buildings and property, has turned into a blatant massacre of people.
On the first day of the Ukrainian invasion, the Russians advanced on the city of Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, capturing many towns north of Kyiv. One of these towns was Bucha. When Ukrainian soldiers recaptured the town on April 1st there was endless brutality in the town. According to a Ukrainian news agency, 403 civilians have been killed in the town. Some residents were forced to their knees and shot in the head by Russian soldiers, according to NBC. Other reports say that civilians were found dead with their hands tied. The New York Times called it a “campaign of terror and revenge.”
Some bodies were found in the basement of houses that were ransacked by Russian soldiers. Others were killed while carrying out daily tasks by Russian snipers and soldiers. Russian soldiers also destroyed vehicles and trampled houses with their vehicles.
In an interview with The New York Times, a Bucha resident stated, “They were not able to defeat our army, so they killed ordinary people.”
This brutality caused Russia to be voted out of the UN human rights council by a vote on April 7th, with 93 voting for the resolution and only 24 voting against. Some notable countries against the resolution were China, North Korea, Iran, Kazakhstan, and Cuba.
The White House has condemned the massacre. The White House security adviser Jake Sullivan said in an interview with CNN, “Based on what we have seen so far — we have seen atrocities. We have seen war crimes. We have not seen a level of systemic deprivation of life of the Ukrainian people to rise to the level of genocide.”
The Kremlin, the Russian Government, is denying these accusations of brutality in Bucha. According to Reuters, the Kremlin said the massacres were of “monstrous forgery” and a “simply well-directed but tragic show.” The Russian president also honored the 64th brigade, which is the Russian unit accused of the massacre in Bucha.
According to Ukrinform, the unit was honored for “mass heroism and valor, tenacity, and courage shown by the personnel in hostilities for the defense of the motherland and state interests during armed conflicts.”
Bucha has shown the awfulness of war. Hopefully the people responsible will be punished.