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"Heroic": Bundeswehr colonel pays homage to Selenskyj and Klitschko brothers

In its program of March 2, 2022, Stern TV deals with the Ukraine war.

“From tranquil Swabia into the war zone” is how Steffen Hallaschka put it on Stern TV on RTL and probably doesn’t really know how to add a nice touch to the horrible war in Ukraine. The unity in Europe, the solidarity and willingness to help would be positive aspects of a war that otherwise seems to have no hopeful denominator.

Stern TV (RTL) reports on the Ukraine war: departure for the Polish-Ukrainian border

A film documentation by reporter Sophia Maier is shown on Stern TV, showing how she accompanies volunteers from the aid organization STELP from Stuttgart to Lviv, 1300 kilometers away. Not exactly tactfully, she asks one of the men “What’s going on here?” and Serkan Eren, founder of the organization, replies stressed: “We’re being overrun” – and doesn’t mean the Ukraine, but the encouragement of the people, the relief supplies to the bring contact points.

Ukrainische Freiwillige sortieren gespendete Lebensmittel für die spätere Verteilung an die örtliche Bevölkerung in Lwiw, während der ukrainische Präsident Wolodymyr Zelenskij am Mittwoch, 2. März 2022, im Fernsehen auftritt.


Ukrainian volunteers sort donated food for later distribution to the local population in Lviv, as President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky appears on television on Wednesday, March 2, 2022.

“Please stop! No people, no children should die,” a helper whispers into the camera before panning into the box with the packed sausages. Groceries, sleeping bags, painkillers are top priority. One last briefing before departure: Lviv is your “final destination”. They drive into the nightfall, fill up one last time in the Czech Republic, where people wait for hours at the gas stations. Some would call it crazy what he does, in between Sophia Maier tries investigative journalism.

The topics in the RTL program Stern TV on March 2, 2022

  • Help for Ukrainian refugees: Sophia Maier accompanies an aid convoy to the crisis area
  • Between flight and perseverance: How Germans in Ukraine experience the war of aggression

War in Ukraine: Stern TV accompanies an aid convoy to the crisis area

The first kilometers in a country at war: the reporter films the women and children walking past them from the car. “What the f***** shit.” “Dude.” Nobody should film accidents either, and onlookers aren’t welcome anywhere, so they’re told to turn off the camera. In the supermarket, they use the 30,000 euros donated to buy groceries: drinking packets and chocolate for the children. Busy train stations with people arriving there from all over the country. “The worst is yet to come.”

Der Moderator Steffen Hallaschka deutet bei der RTL-Programm-Präsentation 2016/17 auf das Sender-Logo. „stern TV“ hat dieses Jahr 30. Geburtstag. RTL feiert das Jubiläum am 02.09.2020 mit einer knapp vierstündigen Sondersendung und Highlights aus drei Jahrzehnten.


Steffen Hallaschka at the “Stern TV” anniversary show

But Serkan Eren explains that they are needed more elsewhere and up to this point some of the viewers must have thought the same thing. The small relief group picks up two mothers with their babies, who are only a few days old, at the train station to bring them back to Germany. “Bit by bit they give hope” Steffen Hallaschka ends the report on Stern TV in order to switch live to Sophia Maier in her “Apartment” in Lviv.

Stern TV about the Ukraine war: How Germans in Ukraine experience the war of aggression

Further documented escapes of four men are shown on Stern TV, who have found very different survival strategies: Markus Peuser, who runs a German language school, first moves out of Kyiv to a Ukrainian village. Jörg Drescher, a volunteer at the German-Ukrainian Forum, is actually prepared for crisis situations, but friends advise him to leave. Jens Däßler, an entrepreneur, also wants to take the train: he gets a ticket, but has to wait three grueling days. “It was like in the cinema,” he finally explains in Budapest – in safety.

Michael Keller moved to Kyiv because of his wife: The two are trying to get across the border with their dog, cat and car. Relief from Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania when he is switched live to the studio: Fearing that his wife’s son could be drafted into the military, they have now been able to book a plane ticket for him to his uncle in the Netherlands.

War in the Ukraine: Steffen Hallaschka speaks to Colonel Wüstner in the Stern TV studio

Such worries are not unfounded, explains Colonel André Wüstner, chairman of the German Armed Forces Association, in the Stern TV studio with Steffen Hallaschka. “It’s really dangerous there, it’s a war zone,” he says quietly but forcefully. The people in Ukraine are nervous and are still trying to organize everything, including fuel and relief supplies. But the situation will continue to worsen, the hail of bombs will increase and with it the refugee situation and the fighting.

Colonel André Wüstner also has a son, 16 years old, and he can empathize with this situation. “Putin will go down in history in a negative way,” but many Ukrainians in a positive way: Because what is being achieved there is “really heroic.” Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko as well as Volodymyr Zelenskyj are there, present and motivating the population. That’s why Vladimir Putin was surprised that the first wave wasn’t as successful as expected. This social morality in the population, “to work for his country” – he can’t imagine something like that in Germany. (Tina Waldeck)

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