In recent months many people have given up their daytime jobs and occupations to fight invading Russian forces.

This is the story of one such man and his book business. Dmytro Savchenko, author and owner of the Zalizny Tato [Iron Dad] publishing house, gave up publishing books to defend Ukraine.

Dmytro is currently serving with the First Separate Assault Squadron of the Right Sector Volunteer Ukrainian Corps. It is led by legendary commander Dmytro “Da Vinci” Kotsyubaylo.

“We, like nobles, go into battle by putting on the most elegant clothes, as though we are going on a date with a girl,” the publisher told the Kyiv Post.

Zalizny Tato publishing house was founded back in 2016. The idea to create a publishing house was no accident. Dmytro wrote an essay collection about Russia’s war in Donbas, which began in spring 2014 and about adventures in his youth. It was called “Insurgency.”


He knocked on the doors of various publishing houses. But publishers were skeptical and did not want to publish his work even though he would cover the costs. That is when he came up with the idea to set up his own publishing house. And so his “publishing Odyssey” began.

Zalizny Tato chose to publish an area of literature that would help Ukraine to finally move away from Russia’s imperialistic gravitational orbit. The focus was the urgent need for  distance from Russia.

Presentation in Kyiv of the classic “Enejida” by Ivan Kotlyarevskyj, published by Zalizny Tato publishing house in Ukrainian Latin, November 2019. (Photo Credit: Dmytro Savchenko)

“Our books were, indeed, the intellectual anticipation of events that occurred three months ago. We were ready for these events. They weren’t a surprise for us. So, we weren’t confused but quickly took up arms and started to stand against Russian troops. By we I mean our publishing house, our fans, and our readers,” the publisher explained.

A lot of books about war, the history of the volunteer movement in the years of Ukraine’s independence were published by Zalizny Tato. Its aim was to destroy the myth that the volunteer movement was born in 2014.


Thus, the volunteer movement was born at the beginning of Ukraine’s independence. Ukrainian legionnaires  and volunteers fought  in Nagorno-Karabakh on the side of Azerbaijan and, under the flags of UNA-UNSO, in Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Chechen Republic of Ichkeria and Transnistria.

Ukrainian volunteers aimed to oppose Russian imperialism on foreign territorial grounds.

“The motto of the volunteer movement sounded something like: ‘why wait for the aggressor to come to our house if we can stop him in our neighbour’s yard,'” Savchenko explains.

In the opinion of Dmytro Savchenko, the most popular book published by Zalizny Tato is an adventure novel from the tetralogy called “The esthetics of begging” by Dmytro Korchynsky, which professes a philosophy of life that not everyone can understand.

Savchenko is now serving as part of the Right Sector Volunteer Ukrainian Corps, led by legendary commander Dmytro “Da Vinci” Kotsyubaylo.

When local patriots in Zaporizhzhya Region found out that there was such a legendary commander as Dmytro Kotsyubaylo in their midst, they started to join up on a temporary basis.


One of the men who served in the territorial defense is a local historian and a fan of Zalizny Tato. He was very surprised when he saw Dmytro Savchenko and it was great pleasure that he demonstrated a bookshelf with the whole selection of books published by Zalizny Tato.

Savchenko decided to halt its operations from the very start of Russia’s invasion on February 24, because all the men who worked for it went to defend Ukraine.

He has a philosophical outlook on events. “As for each man, for me, the war is a chance to be useful for his spiritual population. While speaking about the Ukrainian national organism, we mean the unity of the culture, way of thinking, mentality, unifying our hearts and souls. The war opens up a horizon of opportunities for a person to be useful for the Ukrainian community,” the publisher underlined.

Dmytro Savchenko in the First Separate Assault Squadron of the Right Sector Volunteer Ukrainian Corps in Kharkiv Region, April 2021. (Photo Credit: Dmytro Savchenko)



To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter