Heterosexual Couple Waited 6 Years For Full Marriage Equality

hi so Roxy and Jordan Davis you guys are are capturing a lot of people's fascination right now and what I'm you know as I told you my I found out that you did you you guys are the straight couple and there maybe there's others but you guys there was an article about you you're a straight couple who waited six years to get married because not everyone had the right to marry and you wanted to wait for that and I found out about this because you're my cousin and then and your dad my uncle sent a little email to the family about this newspaper article and I was like I was so proud and I'm a straight man and I was so proud that someone in my family kind of took that stance six years and wait and did not and I was like my family is badass and I won't ask you what kind of start with this question like I'm a straight man I'm not even I'm not gay so you know marriage wasn't affected for me one way or the other for me directly why do you think what you did is captured so many people's fascination well I mean it seems like this right now is a big moment and I feel like I feel like people care about other people and that we have the capacity to care about issues that don't affect us directly and this seems like I mean for most people that I know you know of course we value our relationships and we you know it doesn't make any sense to discriminate against other people for having different kinds they're not even different kinds of relationships with their having relationships with people of the same gender instead of opposite genders that it doesn't I feel like a lot of people just recognize how insane that is to discriminate against against gay or lesbian relationships and so this is I don't know it's it's it's a victory for for everyone but I mean of course it affects the gay community the most but for anyone who cares about other people's happiness it seems like a horse this is something we can all celebrate well well totally but you guys took it a step further that like I think a lot of people didn't even have the imagination for like I won't get married until everyone can be married I mean that's that's what really impressed me about it and so I mean take us back six years right six years why why did you decide this why was that important for you six years ago yeah well it took us a minute to remember why we you know made that decision at that time but you know we're thinking back okay six years that would have been i remember it was april so it would have been April of 2009 which was only a few months after prop 8 past yeah and you know we were both living in California when prop 8 past and were completely devastated by that result I know a good what that not a constitutional referendum that changed the California Constitution to make define marriage as between one man and one woman so what had happened was the legislature had me tried to define marriage this way and then the California courts smacked it down and said no that's unconstitutional and then they said well we'll change the constitution then and they went in and they did just that and that was what profit where it was it was changing the Constitution to keep gay people from getting married right and I remember lots of celebrities coming out doing videos funny things all kinds of stuff and like I was sure California Yeah Yeah right yes bleep stagnation yeah it was such a shock to me I never thought I mean it's just it's unthinkable to me that I don't even understand the discrimination so just the fact that the majority of voters voted in favor of banning gay marriage I mean not just banning it but amending the Constitution specifically to say oh this used to be unconstitutional normal now we're making an exception so that we have to make it OK by the Constitution it was insane to us so I was completely devastated when I heard that we're all together at the we were yeah we were together at the time I was just really really upset about that so i think it was still fresh for us when we got engaged and you know when we were talking about getting married it just seemed like it would be hypocritical of us to go ahead and participate in this when it was you know was this this horrible injustice that it just happened it felt like we would have been complicit in it by just carrying on our business as usual as though nothing had happened I think that's the right word is we didn't want to feel complicit in this injustice and by participating in an unjust system gives me chills guys I just want to tell you like that's so powerful I never really thought about it I don't want to interrupt you but I just want you to know how deeply affected I am by you guys owning that that's so powerful it just it felt hypocritical to say man it really sucks that you don't have this thing and that you can't have that thing well good luck with that we're gonna go enjoy our thing like it felt like we didn't we didn't want to do that and we didn't we felt like it would be hypocritical to say one thing and then go into another yeah totally I mean you guys are like my heroes no seriously because you know i mean you know i've written articles about racism and i'm a white man and and and there there there i believe i experienced there are benefits that i have to being a white man that that that black people don't get for example you know they it's just not as easy for them in some ways and not that i don't have my own challenges and so but like what you guys did taking a stand like if we all took a stand for the injustice as we see in the world and say i am not going to participate in the social benefit of that injustice until it's corrected for all I mean wow yeah well I mean and you the thing about it is we still we still were participating in the social benefit that we had I mean we felt it felt to us like this was the very least that we could do but we still had heterosexual privilege you know we were still this you know man and a woman who are together and we had the respect that people would give to relationships like that that they wouldn't give to same sex relationships and that is that's the injustice you know it's not just about this the legal definition of marriage or the legal status it's about the fact that same-sex marriages and same-sex relationships were thought of as less legitimate then then opposite sex relationships and we were trying to take a stand in our own little way and take on at least what small amount of burden we could to stand in solidarity even though it was still easier for us than it would have been for same-sex couple yeah Jordan that that's a great segue because something that Jordan you had said in the news article that i have my uncle sent us all was uh you said we really got a first-hand look at how domestic partnership is not the same as marriage and I was really fascinated like what did you mean by that um well one of the big things you heard in this debate was that well we don't need gay marriage because domestic partnerships are things civil unions are a thing uh gay people can go just go do that and they can leave our marriage alone because they're they're they're good enough they're separate but equal um but we really got to experience what uh what a civil union is like and again a cell Union you got one yes your domestic registered domestic partnership matter so um California actually doesn't give domestic partnerships to straight couples if they're under the age of 65 65 so when we were living in Nevada we we did get 11 though just get some kind of label on our relationship and get some kind of benefits from it and see what that was like um and it is it's very different um both in small practical ways like taxes and health insurance and in smaller more subtle ways like the way like going into things and not knowing what your status is not knowing whether the law will nize your relationship or not and feeling your status change it art status changed like three times with different court rulings and wealth and when we moved from place to place and we had to get a new sense for what our status was every time wow wow that's interesting so you were kind of like in this legal legal limbo land yeah I've shifted like shifting sands it was never quite a solid foundation for you as a couple yeah yeah and I mean again this is just a tiny sliver of what it would be like to you know to be a same-sex couple and to have this be your only option yeah you know we we had all of the benefits of heterosexual privilege just in the way that people regarded our relationship and we always had the option of marriage there for us on the table if something really drastic happened and all of a sudden oh we really need to share health insurance benefits or whatever that's we always had that we you know we've never gotten to a point where we needed it but that was still always there and sing some same-sex couples don't have that you know so I don't I don't want to make it sound like we feel like oh we've really suffered it's just we got a tiny glimpse into you know just what it's actually like to live with that kind of separate but equal sort of legal status wow that's powerful I get that like there was always an out it's not available a psychological out in the way here did you did you have people telling you were crazy or like why are you doing this or it's ridiculous or um no we didn't really get that I think probably the biggest opponent of this was probably my mom actually she really we had a ceremony a very nice ceremony in Santa arboretum at UC Santa Cruz um does we call it a commitment ceremony because it was not associated with the change in legal status we did get our registered domestic partnership some time after that but mostly we were just is an informal kind of commitment ceremony and for Roxy and I that that was it that was a you know our public statement that we were partners through through this but for my mom it was never marriage until it was marriage and so we did get from her you know you need to go get married in a church when are you gonna get married are you gonna go get married but I don't think we haven't had anyone like tell us oh well that's dumb i don't know why you're doing that people about it must be really supportive and they said you know that's really cool you want to do that and you know gay people that we met you know we got a few very heartfelt thank you it seemed like it really meant a lot to some people which before you got married physically yeah when we would tell them that they would just say like oh yeah thank you thank you so much for that you know he did seem like it it touched them which was which was really nice I you know we want people to feel supported we were doing this in solidarity so the fact that at least a few people were touched by that was very cool I actually got I got to be a minister for a for a gay marriage in California I don't know maybe a year ago for 22 and two friends of mine and it was like it was like what an honor for me it was like I feel like I was being an activist you know in the world kind of in the face of the insanity of this in equal right so that's me I was really proud of that right of that moment but even in that time i still even for me against straight man it's not a huge issue in my world I was hard for me to envision a day when when ya all 50 states were you know we're just gay marriage wouldn't it just won't even be a thing a kind of thing anymore just be like yeah you can get married if you want to get married and so I didn't even know the Supreme Court was looking at this decision and then all of a sudden I wake up one morning you know a couple days ago a week ago whatever and all the all states you can marry everywhere gay people get was like what how did you all feel when that did you know first what the Supreme Court was doing this and how about yeah we knew about it we we knew it was coming we had talked about it a few days before because I'd been kind of keeping up I remember when they were hearing arguments and I've been keeping up yeah and I was keeping up and saying that they were probably going to be releasing the decision last week so we were expecting it and we a little conversation about leg Oh are we gonna get married that day I don't know and I had a lot of stuff going on this week and I was like I don't know if I'm gonna be able have time and so we kind of thought maybe not but then that morning Friday morning when I saw the news i remember i was looking at my twitter feed and i realized at about six-thirty oh my god that's Supreme Court what did you say what did you think they were gonna do i wasn't sure i was hopeful that they would legalize same-sex marriage I was hopeful hopeful um but not but I've been burned before I remember how I felt after prop eight so I was not ready to fully commit to it happening yes but i remember at about six-thirty that morning I knew that the Supreme Court Court was going to be releasing their decisions for that day and I was following this little like live tweeting live blogging of the Supreme Court and at 7am I remember seeing the little words come across the screen saying you know first up same-sex marriage and I was like oh my god Wow ok and then it said Kennedy's reading the verdict I'm letting up vertically said Kennedy is reading the decision I'm like oh my god I remember I sitting there holding my breath literally like this like he can't believe it's happening right now Kennedy was reading that reading it you knew that it was that's what I was no point at that point I was still holding my breath we still love gay men you still love drama yeah it was a traumatic moment for me at least and then when it said you know that same-sex marriage was legal the next little tweet I just started crying I was just crying and crying I'm so happy Jordan is asleep next to me in bed not like on my phone like crying reading this and I in that moment I knew I was like we have to do it today like I need to celebrate this I can't just go about my day like this nothin like we need to mark this occasion yeah so welcome up and I was like let's get married today and he's like yeah okay so it was you know I know you were happy about that yeah cuz it was a it was nice that we could participate in the day and then celebration not our little way yeah blogs just crashing into things you can I feel like that is really distracting I'm so you guys you you you you knew where you were going you went to the courthouse she brought you got to where to get the flags the rainbow flags there's a flag store a couple blocks away actually so we went to the flag store and got rainbow flags was actually kind of an interesting place it's very apolitical they have like uh don't tread on me flags with guns on them right next to the rainbow flags he signs on them what was so it's so interesting that the Confederate flag is coming down and the rainbow flag is we're going up but it's securely but the American flag is still there that's the one that that endures throughout all of these changes and it's such a beautiful thing our country is a great experiment and I feel like we just created a successful like we just had a birthing of success like love just opened up a little bit more yeah a lot of things went right last week it's pretty pretty cool I definitely get what you're saying about that I felt like even going through the day that day and over the weekend I was like I'm a little bit more proud to be like an American citizen today and like just breathing the air it feels like better air and being in America is a like there's a little bit less of me that's like it let's move to Canada like that voice is a little quieter and me we after this decision right I get that man so well I I'm just so proud of you guys and again you know there's a part of me look we're all heterosexual here and it's sort of there's a little bit of a like almost like a self-congratulatory aspect of this to that I feel and really the reason we're even having this conversation and what you did is because there was a massive population in our country that's still just yes they have the right to marry but they're still going to face the stigma of society right parents and the family the community that still don't quite approve Oh totally I mean this is this is a victory this is a big deal but it doesn't mean discrimination is over or that our work is done you know we still have to work and be allies as much as we possibly can you know because this is still going to be an ongoing issue that is you know not like you know the racism didn't die when barack obama got elected right and it's in the same way they're still discrimination right yeah there's a lot of work that needs to be done still well you guys are I'm so like I just you're my family and I'm like wow with my family I was like you guys you guys have made me very proud thank you so I'm just thank you so much for the stand that you took for free quality for love for a bigger vision for our country in the world and and it was a small gesture but at the same time it's just like I just can't tell you how how it's affected me right so I just really honor you guys and that it really means a lot I'm just glad that our little story our little experiences resonated with so many hands getting very very cool and we're happy again just to be able to participate in this movement in what little way that we can ya know it's been weird getting so much attention about it I mean the way that we saw this going on Fridays we were just like okay we're gonna get our little rainbow flags and we're going to go and celebrate with people and that's gonna be it and then we ended up on the news and it ended up like all these people heard about us and it's like we're getting all these congratulations and like people being like oh you're so awesome and I feel like I don't know deserve that but I'm great I feel it's great that you are excited about it it makes me happy but but yeah we never expected it well I mean I told you I'm a-okay social media presence and you guys became I get great engagement like people are envious about the engagement again on social media and you guys I posted that article about you you guys became my most popular facebook post ever it's really surprising we're not so honored but I'm so I couldn't it's like I'm so grateful to also thank you all so much for for this and in I hope that this conversation was interesting for folks out there and Roxy and Jordan I love you both and and thank you again yeah thank you so much

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Just how to arrange a “so British” wedding celebration? When…

Just how to arrange a “so British” wedding celebration?
When points are clear in between us, we can take you on a journey to arrange your wedding event.”Something old, something brand-new, something obtained something blue”: this English practice has it that the new bride uses one device of each to bring great luck. Elisa suggests you to have a double-story cake, yet while sober, competition requires our little Britons are not followers of pompous as well as big American-style wedding celebration cakes.

When points are clear in between us, we can take you on a journey to arrange your wedding celebration. On the side of our English close friends, the EVJF takes the kind of a lengthy weekend break concentrated solely on the new bride. On D-Day, the bride-to-be is stired up at dawn for an unidentified location.”Something old, something brand-new, something obtained something blue”: this English custom has it that the bride-to-be uses one device of each to bring great luck. Elisa recommends you to have a double-story cake, yet while sober, competition requires our little Britons are not followers of pompous and also significant American-style wedding celebration cakes.

BECOMING MADAME | Getting Married in France | My French Civil ceremony

It's the typical kind of thing that makes
my french partner be like oh they're so old school and I'm like wow so French I
love it! Salut YouTube if you guys have been
following me on Instagram you'll know the news – je suis madam! I
announced that I was getting married this summer in Avignon in France and it
happened and it was awesome and yeah it's another life in France
experience to add to the list I guess amongst the many that I seem to be
collecting like Pokemon or something but if you're subscribed you may be thinking
that that video didn't come out so long ago like wow that was quick it already
happened so yeah we decided to get married four months before it happened so it was quick for us too! Neither of us were really interested in the
traditional wedding ceremony you know with the big dress and the cars
and the cakes and the expense and the one year of planning and all of those
kinds of things.

If I have the same amount of money I'd far rather spend it on
traveling or experiences so once we basically decided that it's what we
wanted to do we were like well we might as well get on with it and do it, so
that's what we did. So in this video I just want to take you through a little
bit around the preparations and the lead-up to the wedding how that all
worked and the day itself of course and some of my kind of culture shocks about
getting married in France and yeah what it means for me now in my life in
general. The lead-up to this was pretty quick but as I said four months
and we needed to get all of the paperwork ready and all of that kind of
thing. So as a foreigner it's kind of tricky to get married here but
definitely not as bad as I was expecting.

So we basically knew that the first step
would be to give our application to get married to our town hall in France. What
you've got to know about getting married in France is that the only place you can
get legally married in France is in your town hall in the Mairie, so you may want
to get married in a church and you may want to get married in a vineyard and
you may want to get married at a castle you can have a party on the
moon for all they care but you won't be actually getting married if that makes sense. So the first decision you might think is
which Mairie do you want to get married at? And unfortunately for you you can't
choose the cutest Mairie that you've ever seen you know we can't all go to
Hotel de Ville in Paris to get married you need to go to your local Mairie, so your local town hall is either where you live or where at least one of your
parents live so for us we had the choice between the 9th arrondissement in Paris, Avignon or Marseille for us.

We barely hesitated, the obvious
choice was Avignon, it was where my partner grew up, it's where his dad lives
and we're actually super lucky because on top of his day job his dad actually
works part time for the Town Hall and he's actually able to officiate wedding
ceremonies so his dad was able to marry us which was so cool and so we started
getting all of the paperwork together to have our appointment in Avignon and we had the appointment I think two months before the wedding. The absolute minimum is 40 days and the reason for this is that anyone who gets married in France
needs to have been living in France for at least 30 days by the time they
publish the marriage banns and then the marriage banns need to be published for a
further 10 days so it's 40 days minimum.

So as far as French
administration goes, gathering all of our documents for the dossier was relatively
straightforward we did have one problem with the documents I needed translated.
It's just one tip if you're preparing to get married yourself
is that the translations have to be done by an official translator based in
France for some reason that's very important that they need to be
physically based in France. So we turned up for our interview as I said it was
about two months before the wedding you don't actually want it to be much
earlier than that to be honest because in France their birth certificates
expire every three months which is just a concept that blows Expat's minds
because how can your birth certificate expire, the informations never gonna
change?! But actually in France they add life events to a birth certificate
so it's not just your birth certificate but it's your life certificate if you
ever have a civil union if you ever get married if you get divorced if you have
kids all of that kind of thing so basically your documents like birth
certificates are only valid for three months anyway in the eyes of French
administration so you don't actually want to be organized and have your
interview five months in advance because then you're just gonna have to bring all
the new documents the next time anyway so that I would say two months was about
perfect so what we did is that we emailed all of the documents through in
advance so that they had sort of a digital copy this is when they told us
that the translations weren't gonna work so it was a very stressful and very
expensive week getting those redone again in France but we got them done
and time for the interview and so the interview is there basically to judge
firstly if you have a complete file (dossier) and then of course
there's also like a judging if this is a genuine relationship or not and it was
at this meeting that I learned that I'd be the very first New Zealander to be
getting married in Avignon France! I've never been the first something
before I don't think you know like the first ever to do something so I was
like yeah.

You also have to make a few decisions in the interview like whether
or not you'll be exchanging rings with one another because this is a legal
ceremony so that kind of thing is really considered as an added extra which
they'll have to account for timing wise and everything so our dossier got
accepted and we were given our projet de marriage, our marriage project, which says
who's getting married who are the witnesses so you need to have at least
two witnesses and a maximum of four, the date the time and all of that kind of
thing so the wedding itself was at 4:30pm in the afternoon and the ceremony I
think was about 15 to 20 minutes long I think the shortest possible ceremonies
are like 5 to 10 minutes long it's literally when people get in, they read
the civil codes from the law, say yeah you're married and then they get on
their way basically and then you've got the longest possible
of ceremonies where you know people do speeches and they do speeches to each
other and there's lots of photos being taken and all that kind of stuff but
basically you get a 30 minute slot maximum so you've got 30 minutes to get
in, get married, get out.

For our particular ceremony, it started with a beautiful speech from my partner's father that just had me crying and crying and then you get on
to the obligatory part which every French wedding has to have which is
reading the civil codes out loud and these are things like article 236.8 you will both be implicated in the raising of any children that you have
and you know it's this kind of quite old-school legal kind of thing I noticed
that there were a lot of mentions of children so it felt very old
school it's like oh now that we're married we can have children, can we? So
it's very very protocol focused and the codes get read, you get asked if you
accept and agree and you say "oui" hopefully and then you're declared
married basically and you need to go and sign your marriage certificate and your
witnesses need to go and sign the marriage certificate as well and it's
over relatively quickly but then after doing that can you do the extra stuff
like we exchanged rings for example.

It was almost like you had the the peak of
the ceremony because it was like voila you're married and everyone's applauding
and everything and then you exchange the rings and you take photos and so on and
then you basically leave the room and you let the next couple who's waiting
outside to come in and it's their turn. One of the super cool things about
getting married in France is you get the Livret de Famille It's like a marriage passport it has your
names and details and date of birth and all of that kind of stuff in it, it's got
the details of all of our parents in there it's got all of these pages so
that you can write down the names and details of any children that you may
have so it becomes a kind of yeah like family passport!
It's the typical kind of thing that makes my French partner go like 'Oh so
old-school' and I'm like 'wow so French I love it!' then after the ceremony
we went back to my partner's dad's house he's got a lovely countryside house in Avignon.

It was very simple, we cooked the meal ourselves for all of our guests, my
friends and I made the cake and we also bought like a miniature pièce montée as well, we put beautiful like fairy lights and lamps and things in the trees and if
you've seen my Instagram then you'll see that I bought lots of balloons lots
and lots of balloons and blew them up with helium so I had balloons and some
decorations and things like that but it was it was like a simple garden party at
home. We realized pretty early on that it's a huge ask to ask our New
Zealand friends and family you know they've got jobs they've got kids
they've got their their lives going on with such short notice to just take their plane tickets come all the way to France and we didn't want to put
that kind of burden on anyone or that financial burden on anyone so what we're
doing is that we're going to replicate kind of in New Zealand and we're going
to have a an awesome party and stuff with the family over there.

Our parents
and everything have already met so it's absolutely fine. So we've already had our French day which was amazing and then we'll have the New Zealand day as well. And then afterwards we had a one week honeymoon in Corsica, France and
then we're going to go down to Queenstown in New Zealand. So that was the day, so glad it happened, really cool, also glad that we don't have to do it again
because there was a lot of planning even if you want to have like a really simple
day and you don't want to have you know hundreds and hundreds of
people there it still ends up being the same that you can't possibly speak to
everyone the time just flies by it's emotional there's a lot going on.. it's a really happy day but also it's like oh cool let's move on now let's be married
that's cool.

So what does this all mean for me now because I've had a lot of
people getting confused saying that oh you know you you're French now or like oh
you get your French nationality now and that's definitely not how it works!
Getting married in France doesn't give you the French nationality I can apply
for French nationality through marriage four years following the date of marriage
it doesn't matter how long we've been together beforehand but what it means is
that I now have access to a spouse visa so I can come in and out of France
without much hassle and that makes my life easier in a lot of ways and then
when you get married in France you have the option to either take your partner's
name as a woman so replace your surname with their name or you can both carry
both names if you want to but the default is that you just keep each of
your names separately that's what we'll still be doing for now.

I definitely will
consider changing my name one day when I have a reason to or and I feel like it's
the right time but for now we're not in any rush and we don't have any sort of
impending need and honestly I just don't want to deal with all the administration
like new passport and new documents and all that kind of stuff so for now I'm
staying as I am and we'll see what the future brings.

So that's it for this
video guys if you have any comments or questions about my experience about
getting married in France feel free to ask me down below or on Instagram as
well because I do answer all of my Instagram DMs, that's a promise. Until
then I'll see you guys in the next video! Bisous et à bientôt!.

As found on YouTube

Why Ukraine is trapped in endless conflict

This is eastern Ukraine. Conflict broke out here in 2014 and it hasn't ended. There about 100,000 fighters
stationed here, which makes it one of the most heavily militarized areas on Earth.
There are Ukrainian forces to the west and Russia-backed separatist militias to the
east. Fighting between the two groups occurs here along the contact line. In 2015 after nearly a year of deadly fighting, a peace agreement called for a
ceasefire creating this security zone. The agreement was supposed to stop the
fighting and resolve the conflict between Ukraine and the separatists, but
three years later the security zone remains the most violent place in
Ukraine. The ceasefire is violated almost every single
day in East Ukraine, which reportedly puts about 100,000 civilians
in the constant danger. Over 10,000 people have died since the conflict in
Ukraine began and about 1.5 million have been displaced, while both sides continue
to build up their forces.

The conflict began at the end of 2013,
when the Ukrainian government rejected an association with the European Union
in order to build stronger ties with Russia. The pro-Moscow move led to
massive protests in the capital Kiev, which turned deadly by 2014. Russia took advantage of the chaos and sent its military in to annex Crimea in March.
A month later pro-Russian separatists in the Donbass seized the cities of
Luhansk and Donetsk and declared them independent from Ukraine. The Ukrainian army moved to take the region back, but Russia covertly joined the separatist
rebels, which led to fierce fighting for several months. In February 2015
both sides settled on a peace agreement called Minsk II. The deal laid down
conditions for a ceasefire in the security zone, where heavy artillery
tanks and mortars were banned. Foreign militaries, meaning Russia, had to leave
Ukraine. It also recognized the two separatists areas the Donetsk People's
Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic and outlined how they could be
reincorporated back into Ukraine, but despite the agreement none of that has
happened.

In order to understand why, you have to know what Ukraine means to
Russia's President Vladimir Putin. Last one out of the Soviet Union please turn
out the light. The vitally important Ukraine announced independence for the
Republic, the people there are more Russian than Ukrainian. Much to fear, a separate
Ukraine would be a catastrophe. Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire in the
19th century and the Soviet Union in the 20th, when the Soviet Union dissolved in
1991 its western territory broke into independent states including Ukraine.
They formed a buffer between Russia and Western Europe, but in the 90s and 2000's
these countries started drifting westward and many joined the EU. By invading Ukraine, Putin was able to destabilize and stop it from developing
a stronger relationship with Western Europe.

Russia continues to fuel the
fighting by supporting the separatists and keeps its own military at the ready. Meanwhile Ukraine's government is forced to devote resources to its defense. Both sides have ignored the ceasefire so far and a closer look at the frontlines
reveals just how unstable the region is. The separatist rebels in the LPR and DPR
have funding, weapons, and the assurance of thee massive Russian military behind
them. They are responsible for the majority of the ceasefire violations. On the Ukrainian side, the forces are a mix of Ukrainian army soldiers and volunteer
militias. These militias are funded by Ukrainian oligarchs and members of
parliament. Some have far-right views and even have
attacked the Kiev government, but Kiev continues to fund and arm these groups
anyway.

It's their only defense against the Russia-backed rebels in the east. So despite a cease-fire that could have ended the conflict, there's an active war
on the ground. Both sides continue to fire a heavy artillery on a daily basis
as a show of strength. Power, water, and supplies are common targets and the
heaviest price is paid by the hundreds of thousands of civilians trapped in the
crossfire..

As found on YouTube