On what can only be called a national day of remembrance, Ukraine commemorates its Independence Day with great pomp and ceremony. This national commemoration of Ukrainian national identity has traditionally been celebrated in west Ukraine and Minsk in the region of the former Soviet Union. The capital city of Kyiv, the city that was the centre of the famous “Euromaidan” revolution against the former government, has observed the anniversary of the famous day for years now. On this special day, which falls on February 15th, people in the region to raise a hand and observe a moment of unity in defense of Ukraine. They raise their hands in the same gesture of respect and love towards their nation and country as well as towards other nations of the world.
What is Ukraine Day of Unity? On this day, which has been marked since Soviet times, people in Ukraine to take out their ID cards and sign a pledge of loyalty to their motherland and country. The celebration includes parades, live performances and street celebrations. In fact these are all manifestations of pride of being an independent state in its own right. The parades represent the people’s enthusiasm to celebrate the day. They also serve as an important way of calling attention to the spirit of brotherhood among the various communities represented there.
Maidans orators deliver speeches at the evening gathering in the Red square in Kyiv. The message they convey is one of respect for the memories of their nation and its glorious past. It is also a message of gratitude and love for the people of other nations that have also come to support their nation.
Besides parades, streets are also lined with monuments and colorful banners representing the heritage and history of Ukraine. Another major highlight on this national day is the massive national celebrations which take place in Kyiv itself. Some of the most popular activities include parading through the streets in uniform, displaying national symbols and carrying out special activities such as gymnastics, games and musical and dance performances. Fireworks are also used during the celebrations to celebrate the Independence Day.
For many of those not familiar with the abbreviations and symbols associated with the national holiday, it can be helpful to learn them. There are also some interesting facts on the background of this important day. For example, on the very first day after the revolution, a Provisional Government was set up. The Provisional Government included members of the armed forces and other prominent citizens who had been displaced by the revolution.
On this day, the significance of friendship, brotherhood and love is commemorated. It is also believed that this day was inspired by the phrase written by an English poet, whom we would know as Robert Browning who was asked, “What is the best time to celebrate freedom?” His answer was the second week of April, the day after Easter, when he wrote, “It is the best time to rejoice the gain of peace.” This was a significant contribution by one of the greatest poets of our time, and his words on this day should be forever remembered and honored.