‘Take these seeds and put them in your pockets’: Ukrainian Woman Stuns Russian Soldier


A Ukrainian woman has become a symbol of resistance after insulting a Russian soldier. Screenshot via cell phone video of incident.

A Ukrainian woman’s insult to a Russian soldier about “sunflower seeds” is quickly becoming a symbol of Ukraine’s resolve in the face of a Russian invasion.

Caught on a video shared on social media, an incensed Ukrainian woman tells a (frankly, unbelievably calm) Russian soldier he should carry a handful of sunflower seeds with him.

“Put them in your pockets,” she says, “so at least sunflowers will grow when you all lie down here.”

She then urges other soldiers standing behind the man to do the same.

The confrontation took place in Henichesk, a port city on the Sea of Azov that has been a jumping-off point for the southern operations in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Russian forces operating out of Henichesk are said to be approaching the major port cities of Berdyansk and Mariupol.

Sunflowers are the national flower of Ukraine.

The full transcript is below, which includes the quote: “You’re occupants, you’re fascists! What the fuck are you doing on our land with all these guns? Take these seeds and put them in your pockets, so at least sunflowers will grow when you all lie down here.”

sunflower seeds insult

Full transcript of the exchange between a Ukrainian woman and a Russian soldier.

Full transcript of the exchange between a Ukrainian woman and Russian soldier.

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Matt White is a senior editor for Coffee or Die Magazine. He was a Pararescueman in the Air Force and the Alaska Air National Guard for eight years and has more than a decade of experience in daily and magazine journalism. He also teaches journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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