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On the cover
7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope

28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.


Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.


Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.


Kyiv Cars

An Off-Road Car Built for Off Road

If you look in the dictionary under the term misnomer, it should quote as an example most car manufacturers use of the term off road. Speak to anyone honest in the echelons of vehicle manufacturer management (they are quite easy to find, surprisingly) and they will tell you that their 4x4 SUV off-roader is not built for going off road. But heres one that is!

And thats a good thing when it comes to driving in Kyiv, because many of the roads here, with their mountainous undulations, crater-sized potholes and horribly protruding tramlines, are very much akin to driving off road. With so many SUVs clogging the city streets you might think this was the reason, but 99 percent of the time youd be wrong: the drivers of the vast majority of these cars are only trying to feel bigger. If you really want a car thats going to cruise through the more difficult to handle streets of Kyiv then you should definitely be looking towards the Land Rover Freelander 2 it is certainly built for it.
Dont take my word for it, take it from Jeremy Clarkson and his crew at Top Gear the only truly honest we-dont-get-paid-by-car-manufacturers-to-tell-you-lies (just like Whats On but with a slightly bigger audience) TV car review show in the world. They ranked the Freelander 2 as the best SUV in the world in 2006. With this car, Land Rover has clawed the term 4x4 back from meaning Can just about handle mild bumps but makes you feel bigger to once again referring to a car that can take you anywhere, through just about anything and over anything youd want to go over unless youre completely crazy.
Amazingly, and this is Land Rovers real achievement with the Freelander 2, it still feels and drives and looks like a car, and a British-built car at that. Personally speaking, 4x4s should be designed like a series of chunky boxes stuck together with none of this crossover nonsense other makers are going for, and the Freelander 2 is just that, but its lines are softened a tad as if it had been designed with a touch of Lenor, giving its rugged manly lines just a hint of softness. And it is just the right size. Its big and roomy and spacious, but its not too big and roomy and spacious. Its big enough to give you all the room you need without getting so big as to begin to question your motivation for buying one.
While Land Rover may now be owned by an Indian company no ones ever heard of, the cars are still built in Solihull, Great Britain, and this car is as British as they come. A Freelander 2 doesnt say of its driver Im deeply insecure and hope this car hides it or I have stacks of cash and love to flash it. The driver of this car is proudly saying, I have class and style, and I am secure in that. The all-leather, wood-trimmed interior is pure British class, and the gadgetry is refined and laid out with purpose and ease of use in mind. The seats are exceptionally comfortable and both the front seats have arm rests so you can sit in a Kyiv traffic jam and remain as relaxed as if you were sitting at home in your favourite armchair watching TV. One gadget this car has that shows off its off-road pedigree is a large knob that allows you to switch the set-up of the car depending on driving conditions and whether youre on tarmac or dirt. Rain, snow or flooding, the Freelander 2 is going to get you through it (the thing has Gore-Tex membranes on the headlights, for Gods sake), and thats a good thing as winter rapidly approaches. Its windscreen wipers sense the amount of precipitation falling and adjust their speed accordingly!
This car handles the town like it was made for it, and for all intents and purposes it was. No matter the size of the pothole or rise in the tramlines, it will handle it with no more than a wry smile. And regardless of the height of the pavement you want to park on, this car will get you onto it without a second thought. In fact, with each wheel having individual suspension, you could just sit one wheel up on the pavement and have the car sit there peacefully like a big dog giving its paw.
Powered by a 3.2 litre engine that produces 233BHP, this car has all the power you need to get you through the worst of it. The manufacturers claim that it does 0-100km/h in 8.9 seconds, and who am I to argue with them, although it didnt feel so fast to me. In fact, when you put the foot down in this car and the 6-speed automatic transmission drops down gears, the thing you notice is the extra noise rather than the extra speed. But this is a Land Rover! This isnt for racing. If you want to go street racing, buy something else. You dont have the class for this car. This car is for cruising, and it does that magnificently. Theres no wallowing or dipping which you might expect from a car that goes off road as well as this one. It handles well and keeps itself upright and in control at all times. And if you are a person upright and in control at all times, this is the car for you. At just under $60,000, this car is a steal. Other cars may be rattled to pieces with regular use on Kyivs roads, but this car will keep running and running.

Neil Campbell

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.

    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.


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