Zelensky’s latest address on Sunday evening, September 11, was dedicated to the warriors of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The Ukrainian President stated that Ukrainians have been fighting for freedom, independence, and the right to be for 200 days in a row.
Read the President’s full address below:
Today is 200 days of our resistance. Our struggle. Our people’s war. For freedom, for independence, for the right to be. In these 200 days, we have achieved a lot, but the most important and challenging is ahead. And I want to dedicate this address to those who are ahead. Who is having the most challenging time now, as they are doing the most important thing?
These are all defenders of Ukraine. All those who have been courageously standing for 200 days being the exact reason why Ukraine stands. Strong, and that is why we are free. Unbreakable, and that is why we are independent. Our fighters, who heroically restrained the enemy, and now they do not restrain themselves. And they drive the occupiers out in the north, south and east. In all directions, but moving in only one direction – forward and towards victory.
200 days of Ukrainian resistance. Almost 5 thousand hours. Almost 300 thousand minutes. Almost 20 million seconds. And just as many reasons to say “thank you” today to everyone who made this possible. Millions of times. Without any “almost”. To say that we believe in them, believe in their victory. Without any “almost”.
These are all our warriors of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Ground troops, our infantry. You know better than anyone else: there is little romance in war and a lot of hard work. These days, it is courageously and selflessly performed by our separate mechanized brigades. The 92nd – named after Kish otaman Ivan Sirko. The 54th – named after Hetman Ivan Mazepa. The 14th – named after Prince Roman the Great. The 60th Inhulets separate infantry brigade. Step by step in the Kharkiv region, Kherson region, Donbas, with weapons, shovels, hands, teeth – you are “gnawing away” every meter, every frontier, every city and village of ours.
These are our tank troops. Those who forge the future victory in iron gloves. And today, on the day of the professional holiday, as well. These are the 3rd, 4th, 5th separate tank brigades, tank regiments and battalions, tank companies within the airborne assault troops, the 17th separate Kryvyi Rih tank brigade named after Kostiantyn Pestushko. And especially – the 1st separate tank Siversk brigade. I sincerely congratulate all of you and everyone involved on Tanker’s Day.
These are our missile troops and artillery. You are rightfully called the “gods of war”. You send the occupiers to the divine trial. You send the demons back to hell. Today, the 406th separate artillery brigade named after brigadier-general Oleksiy Almazov is doing this with special fervor and spark in their eyes. We are grateful to its fighters and in general to everyone whom we warmly call “our arta”.
How would one describe your jewelry work in two words? Accurate and loud. We thank you for every “accurate” and every “loud”. For all destroyed enemy convoys, warehouses, bases and headquarters. Important crossings and bridges. Where your efforts cause fire and where the enemy violated the rules of fire safety. People online wish you accurate calculations and new hits, and they address the occupiers in a language they understand: “Stop smoking everywhere. Smoke where there hasn’t been a hit yet”.
These are our Air Forces. Bombing, assault, fighter, reconnaissance, military transport aviation. Defending Ukraine you are always on top.
These are our Airborne Assault Troops. You are always the first! Because it is no one but you! These slogans are not just words. The enemy has been aware of this for eight years and 200 days. And today, the occupiers especially feel the strength and power of the 79th airborne assault brigade, the 25th and 80th airborne brigades. In particular, in the Kharkiv region, which you are successfully liberating from the enemies. And in the Donetsk region, where you are successfully repelling the enemy.
We are sure: in both areas there will be one finale – your victory. For this, one doesn’t need to read forecasts, it is enough to read your oath. You are the paratroopers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. You will never accept defeat. You will never retreat in the face of difficulties. You will never leave your brothers-in-arms in danger. You are always ready to destroy the enemies of Ukraine in battle. You are the paratroopers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine!
These are our Naval Forces. You proved that it doesn’t matter what fleet the enemy has, what flagship he has, when Neptune is on your side. Guards of native shores. Missile boats, artillery, minesweeping and landing craft, naval aviation, naval artillery and, of course, marines. And I especially want to note the 503rd separate battalion of the marines. On your chevrons there is an inscription: “If this is an offensive, this is us.” In our hearts there are words: if this is you, this is success and victory.
These are the air defense troops of Ukraine. Anti-aircraft missile troops, radio engineering troops, air defense of the Ground and Naval Forces. You hear an air raid alert differently than most. Most descend into shelter. You direct your gaze upwards to destroy enemy missiles, aircraft, helicopters and drones.
This is our intelligence. For obvious reasons, very few people know your names, your faces. Your operations are not usually written about in the news, but they will definitely be written about in military science textbooks. Your successes are often quiet and imperceptible to our people, but always painful and tangible to our enemy.
These days, intelligence officers are especially showing themselves. The 131st separate reconnaissance battalion of military intelligence of Ukraine. Those who are always ahead. I thank you, I thank all the units of the Main Intelligence Directorate and all our intelligence officers, thanks to whom we always see, always hear, always know, always act. And we will definitely win.
These are our special forces, Special Operations Forces. Those who attack. Those who prevail not in quantity, but in quality. Those who have a special power to fight on the edge of possible and impossible.
These are the territorial defense forces. And we especially note the fighters of the separate 115th and 117th territorial defense brigades.
These are medical troops that save the lives of our warriors. These are military clergy, chaplains who pray for the lives of our warriors. These are our engineers, communications officers, cyber army.
These are those who have been defending and serving the state side by side with the Armed Forces of Ukraine for eight years, for 200 days and right now. I thank all the warriors of the National Guard, its special forces, in particular the 15th Sloviansk regiment. I am thankful to all our border guards. To the officers and employees of the Security Service of Ukraine, the National Police, the State Emergency Service, our firefighters, rescuers, sappers. And altogether – to all our warriors, defenders, the best sons and daughters of Ukraine who are liberating its north, south and east today.
To everyone who in 200 days destroyed more than 2,000 enemy tanks, 4,500 armored combat vehicles, more than 1,000 enemy artillery systems, 250 aircraft and 200 helicopters, almost 1,000 drones, 15 ships and boats, thousands of other enemy equipment units.
Liberated hundreds of our towns and villages. Who broke the plans of the enemy, because they did not break themselves. All those who held the defense and defended Kyiv. Saved our capital, and thus preserved our faith in our victory.
All those who strengthened and multiplied it by protecting Kharkiv, Mykolaiv, Chernihiv, Odesa, Zaporizhzhia, Dnipro. Everyone who defended Mariupol and Azovstal. Liberated the Kyiv region, Zhytomyr region, Chernihiv region, Sumy region. Bucha, Irpin, Borodyanka, Vorzel, Hostomel, Makariv. Okhtyrka, Sumy. And now – Balakliya, Izyum, Kupyansk.
All those who liberated, liberate and will liberate all temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. Bring back the Ukrainian flag to Kherson, Berdyansk, Melitopol, Luhansk, Horlivka, Yenakijeve, Mariupol and Donetsk, Yalta, Dzhankoy, Kerch, Yevpatoriya, Simferopol. Who have been working 200% all these 200 days.
The enemies said that they got lost, that they were going to an exercise. You taught them a lot. The ability to quickly get dressed and get out of our land, and the understanding that, by abandoning equipment and weapons, it can be done much faster and easier.
Many of them have forever learned that it is correct to say not “on Ukraine” but “in Ukraine”. I am talking about all those who set foot on our land and stayed in it. Many will forever remember what awaits all uninvited guests in Ukraine. Our warriors.
Today, everyone sees and notes your actions in the north, south and east of Ukraine. The world is impressed. The enemy is panicking. Ukraine is proud of you, believes in you, prays for you, and is waiting for you.
The path to victory is a difficult one. But we are sure: you are capable of it. You will reach our border, all its sections. You will see our frontiers and the enemies’ backs. You will see the shining of the eyes of our people and of the occupiers’ heels. They will call it “goodwill gestures”. We’ll call it a victory.
We believe in you, in those who have been doing their job, risking their lives, defending their country for all these 200 days at -15°C or +35°C, at 2 am or 6 am, on an ordinary Monday or on Independence Day, despite fatigue, tension and danger.
All who were definitely ready. Who do not pay attention to rumors and gossip. Who do not read fakes on the Internet, but write the history in real life. The history of independence. The history of victory. The history of Ukraine. Our warriors, our fighters, our defenders. For us, you are definitely the first army of the world.
Glory to you!
Glory to Ukraine!
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