My German son, David Meyer-Lindenberg, whose writings you’ve seen here and at Fault Lines, and who was my editor here for years before Beth, has been busy over the past six weeks doing what he could to save the life of his best friend, Misha. I’ll let David explain.
Let me tell you about my best friend, Mykhailo – Misha – who’s fighting for his life and the freedom of his country, Ukraine. We met in 2018, when we worked together in Washington, D.C. I assumed he’d pursue a career in the States, but he told me he wanted to go back to Ukraine, that his country needed him.
When Russia invaded Ukraine, Misha put down his smartphone and picked up a rifle.
I offered to get him out, but he refused. He said his country needed him more than ever. Instead, he had a request: Could we do anything to help him and his friends survive?
A major problem facing the Ukrainian army is a lack of supplies, from sleeping bags to body armor. This is especially true for soldiers like Misha, who were called up from reserve status or drafted. Sometimes, all they were given was a rifle, and then, to quote Misha, you go into battle “pretty much naked.”
Since then, David and others have been working on finding sources or body armor and other equipment Misha and his unit need to survive. Some of this has been public, like when he drove to the Polish-Ukrainian border to deliver 300 thermal scopes. Some of it has not because, well, there are things best kept quiet.
David and his group have put together sources for body armor and other protective gear, but need to fund their purchase. Governments may provide the big-ticket items like tanks and planes, but the smaller needs, from medical equipment to helmets, are coming from smaller, individual efforts like David’s, spending their time seeking sources for the critically needed equipment, making the deals and physically taking them to Ukraine to put into the hands of Misha and his people in the hope they will survive.
Our most important task now is to raise the funds to pay for these things. I humbly ask for your help in protecting Misha and his friends. We aim to raise $50,000 to purchase armor and armor-making supplies, which Kay and I will then take to the border and Misha’s unit. Every dollar you give helps: Even if we can’t buy everything on the market, we’ll buy as much as we can. I don’t want Misha or his friends to die for lack of a vest.
If you can, please donate. It’s tax deductible. It’s easy. It will save lives. Hopefully, it will save MIsha’s life as he fights the Russians to save his country. Thank you.
Edit: If using the Bank of America donation link, please note that the recipient zip is 22303.