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Former Ukranian tells all to UCA audience

Posted: April 11, 2014 - 5:27pm

Katherine Ligon, Ph.D. candidate, mother and rotary member, spoke at UCA last week about her perspective on Ukrainian and Russian relations. Ligon was born in the Ukraine.

Raised in a time of poverty that she explained still exists today, “When I moved to the U.S., I forgot what hunger felt like,” said Ligon.

Ligon is now a U.S. citizen and is proud of her new nation. She has lived in the states for over ten years and has achieved many of her dreams. Including starting a family, continuing her education, and being a happy normal American.

As she looks at her previous hometown of Dnipropetrousk, Ukraine, she is filled with sadness. “There is corruption in the government,” said Ligon. She explains that the government needs to be not made up of billionaires, made wealthy by privatization of natural resources in the Eastern Ukraine.

With increased pressure from the Russian government, and protestors in Kiev, Ukraine, a need for increased military presence in the capital city.

“Although the military has grown, the soldiers lack enough boots and the basic resources,” said Ligon.

These concerns have been heard by the United States government. March 27 the house and senate voted yes on a $1 billion aid package for the Ukraine.

This response is largely in part to the Russian efforts to occupy Crimea. Ligon offers an insight into the landscape of Crimea. “When I was a child I went to Crimea for camp in the summer. I remember it being very underdeveloped. When I went skiing there as an adult, the lift was a stick tied to a rope,” said Ligon.

She further explained that local Crimea residents would offer transportation for 75 percent more than the cost of the lift.

Ligon presented a perspective on the protests in Kiev. According to relatives living in the Ukraine at the time of the major Kiev protests, police units were told not to retaliate. Despite bombardment from protests including the using of smoke bombs, metal pipes, and flairs, police units remained controlled.

Although forces contained most of the protesters, Ligon explained that protestors occupied governmental buildings for months, which led to

Following the lecture Ligon opened the floor for questions and comments from the Audience.

“I worry about any country not ruled by law,” said Dr. Nail, Associate Professor of Psychology at UCA.

Ligon offered a few final words before leaving the lecture. “The difference, to me, between the Ukraine and the United States is that here, you can achieve things and still uphold values,” said Ligon.

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