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Front Page Talking Points


Ukraine's president earns Person of the Year honor


1.gifSummarize news from Ukraine this week.

2.gifReact to a quote from an American or Ukrainian about the war.

3.gifFind a photo from Ukraine and tell what emotions you feel.

Time magazine's choice for Person of the Year isn't a surprise: Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky earns the cover honor as an inspiring symbol of resistance against Russia's war against his homeland. Ukraine's underdog military, helped by arms from the U.S. and Europe, has withstood the February invasion and forced retreats from some areas. "This year's choice was the most clear-cut in memory," writes editor-in-chief Edward Felsenthal. "His decision not to flee Kyiv but to stay and rally support was fateful." Zelensky and Ukraine were the focus of eight earlier Time cover stories in 2022.

The 44-year-old president, a former actor and TV comedian who was elected in 2019, "has used a late-model iPhone to wage the biggest land war of the information age," says the cover story released last week. "His skill at addressing the world through that phone – in his nightly speeches on social media, in his endless calls with foreign leaders and supporters – has been as critical as the number of tanks in his army. . . . Zelensky stressed that this year's invasion is just the latest Russian attempt over the past century to subjugate Ukraine. His intention is to make it the last, even if it takes a lot more time and sacrifice."

Along with Zelensky, Time also recognizes others – including activist women of Iran as Heroes of the Year, New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge as Athlete of the Year, K-pop group Blackpink as Entertainer of the Year and NASA engineers who built the James Webb Space Telescope as Innovators of the Year. Separately, a British business publication – Financial Times – last week also named Zelenskyy its Person of the Year.

President Zelensky says: "If they [Russians] devour us, the sun in your sky will get dimmer." – To Time magazine reporter

Time editor-in-chief says say: "This year's choice was the most clear-cut in memory. . . . The world marched to Volodymyr Zelensky’s beat in 2022." – Edward Felsenthal

Ukrainian politician says: "I didn't vote for him, but we owe him the fact that we survived." -- Alona Shkrum, parliament member from an opposition party

Front Page Talking Points is written by Alan Stamm for, Copyright 2024

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Common Core State Standard
SL.CCS.1/2/3/4 Grades 6-12: An essay of a current news event is provided for discussion to encourage participation, but also inspire the use of evidence to support logical claims using the main ideas of the article. Students must analyze background information provided about a current event within the news, draw out the main ideas and key details, and review different opinions on the issue. Then, students should present their own claims using facts and analysis for support.