With the “Ukrainian War Cats” Yosyp Husak tries to bring some lightness into the everyday life of the people in Ukraine. Like here: A soldier carries a Büsi on his shoulder.
These photos from the front in Ukraine are different. They not only show the war in its horror, but also cute cats. “If you only ever report seriously about the war, people will turn away at some point,” says Yosyp Husak (24) from Kharkiv to the “Tagesspiegel”.
For this he created his own account on Instagram called “Ukrainian War Cats” (“Ukrainian War Cats”). The head of an advertising agency shares photos, videos and memes there that show the four-legged friends. For example in destroyed houses or on the shoulders of soldiers.
According to Husak, these snapshots of rescue operations or encounters on the front line are particularly well received. “Cats from the liberated Ukrainian territories and those rescued during the shelling are shared by up to half a million users.”
Almost 14,000 likes for a cat picture
With his account, Husak wants to appeal primarily to people who are not primarily interested in politics. According to their own statement, 80 percent of the followers of the account come from Europe, the USA or other countries. It was different at the beginning, when mainly Ukrainian people came across his account. Now he wants to tell the foreigners about the war and at the same time give his compatriots psychological support.
Over 17,000 people now follow the account. Ascending trend. As the Ukrainian army retook Kherson, Husak shared a picture of a white cat next to a person in military uniform. The “Deoccupied Cat” received almost 14,000 likes.
A picture from November 26 was also well received by the community. It shows a soldier petting a cat. Destroyed houses can be seen in the background. The description says “Mission Pochukh Complete”. “Pochukh” could mean stroking or scratching the animal, or it could be the name of the animal.
“Victory of Ukraine, its fighters and cats”
The feed also repeatedly contains recordings from Ukrainian private households. Like this one. The description is “Tomorrow will be better”.
One video shows a baby animal in a soldier’s bag, another a furry friend giving a person a high five.
The pictures give comfort and give hope. And they’re a welcome distraction, according to the comments. In addition to praise for the cat photos, there are also words of support for the soldiers at the front. “Victory of Ukraine, its fighters and cats” write users or “I pray for you”.
The Russian government sponsors Youtubers and puts a lot of money into the Russian-language social network VKontakte, Husak explains. “We have other goals,” he emphasizes. Unlike the Russians, people in Ukraine are more concerned with dealing with difficult things with humor. With his account, he wants to draw attention to “that a lot of good artists, musicians and creative people live in Ukraine.” (nad)