Matthew Kaplan Photography

Rally for Ukraine in Chicago's Daley Plaza, with a March to Millennium Park - 3/6/22

With the situation in Ukraine becoming increasingly dire by the day, Daley Plaza on Sunday afternoon was filled with Ukrainians, Ukrainian-Americans, and their supporters, crying out against the deadly injustice of Putin's invasion. Starting under the Picasso at 2:00pm, and finishing near the Bean in Millennium Park after a march up Michigan Avenue and down Clark Street, the protestors proudly displayed the Ukrainian colors, held signs of outrage at Putin's slaughter of their peaceful compatriots, and chanted continually "Close the skies! Close the skies!" Closing of the airspace over Ukraine has been a consistent demand of demonstrators since Russia crossed the border in late February.

A newer request heard from the podium at the rally was for a boycott of McDonald's restaurants and Starbucks coffee, since those two companies have not yet cut off their business in Russia, unlike many other multi-national corporations.

Draped in his nation's flag, the counsul general for Ukraine in Chicago added a call for an embargo of Russia's oil and gas sales as a way to curtail Putin's power, ending his speech with "Slava Ukraini! God bless America!"

Representative Mike Quigley related a Zoom call he and other congressmen had with Ukrainian President Zelensky last week, which the heroic and embattled leader ended by telling them, "You are our biggest hope! Don't allow us to be exterminated!".

"Zelensky was speaking for all the millions who have fought fascism!" cried Quigley, continuing "We should treat Ukraine like it's already a member of NATO!". He ended with the shout, "Long live Zelensky ! Long Live Ukraine!"

"Putin burn in hell!" Putin burn in Hell!" responded the crowd.

Other chants heard during the march included:

"Russia terror state! Russia terror state!" "Stop Putin, stop war! Stop Putin stop war!"

"Wake up Biden! Wake up Biden!"

Gratitude was also expressed for what the administration is doing to aid Ukraine in this existential crisis. But many felt more could, and should be done.

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