A screenshot from Marynka Dovhanych's animation. The blue symbols that double as the soldiers' eyes also double as the Ukrainian trident.
The culture war between Russia and Ukraine has been playing out for decades. As always, one of the key battlefields is language. Russian was the de facto official language of the Soviet Union and it wasn’t until 1989 that Ukrainian was declared the official language of Ukraine. Two years later, the Soviet Union collapsed. Almost simultaneously, Ukraine declared independence. These important junctures can be seen as a very (very) short story in the long (long) history of Ukraine and Russia.