Ukraine is on the brink of a genocide. Can it be stopped?

A scene in Irpin, Ukraine, across the river from Bucha, which has been the site of a massacre in early April 2022. (Photo by Oleksandr Ratushniak/UNDP Ukraine)

Shocking images from Ukraine emerged this week, depicting war crimes and massacres happening in Bucha, a town outside Kyiv. Suddenly, onlookers are using the word “genocide” to describe what has, to this point, been simply called a war.

But is it a genocide? Do these crimes against humanity qualify, or do we risk watering down the term if we apply it too quickly or too often? Jews, in particular, have a stake in any global conversation about genocide, especially in Europe, as comparisons to the Holocaust will inevitably come up.

To unpack these complex issue, we’re joined by two guests: Bob Rae, Canada’s ambassador to the United Nations, and Frank Chalk, founding co-director of the Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies at Concordia University.

Plus, the hosts discuss the latest Netflix Jewish matchmaking show and David continues his journey to understand what it means to be a kohen.

What we talked about

  • Get tickets to Mazel Tov here and use the promo code CHAIPROMO to get a $10 discount
  • Read “Ancient Hebrew curse tablet found by Katy archaeologist could be proof of older Bible timeline” at the Houston Chronicle


Bonjour Chai is hosted by Avi Finegold, Ilana Zackon and David Sklar. Michael Fraiman is the producer. Andre Goulet is the technical producer. Our theme music is by Socalled. The show is a co-production from The Jewish Learning Lab and The CJN, and is distributed by The CJN Podcast Network. To learn how to support the show by subscribing to this podcast, please watch this video.