Friday, May 9, 2014

Victory Day

  • May 9 is considered Victory Day in Russia.
  • It is a celebration of the surrender of Germany to Soviet Union in 1945.
  • It is the end of the Great Patriotic War in the former USSR.
  • It marks the Red Army's victory over the Nazi forces in the former Soviet Union.
  • It was not until 9 May 1965 which was the 20th anniversary that Victory Day was considered a major holiday.
  • An estimated 26.6 million Soviet citizens that includes about 8.7 million armed forces members were killed during World War II.
  • Common symbols seen during Victory Day are: 1) St. George ribbon; 2) Red carnations; and 3) Red Star medal.
  • Victory Day is different with Victory in Europe Day which is celebrated every May 8.
  • A minute of silence is traditionally observed at 19:00 Moscow time to commemorate the Soviet citizens who died in the Great Patriotic War.
  • Military parade in Russia became a tradition when it was started in 1995 as part of the celebration of Victory Day.
  • Victory Day is also observed in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Israel, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Mongolia, Moldova, Montenegro, Russia, Poland, Serbia, Slovenia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan.
  • May 9 is also Victory Day in United Kingdom which is an annual ceremonial event since 2007 in London commemorating the so-called Arctic Convoys which sailed from the United Kingdom, Iceland, and North America to northern ports in the Soviet Union between August 1941 and May 1945.
Victory Day aboard HMS Belfast. Wikipedia photo by: Irene Kalashnikova 
References:

Victory Day (9 May)
Victory Day in Russia
Arctic convoys of World War II
Why May 9 will be a date to watch in Ukraine
Day of joy and grief: Russia marks 69th Victory Day
Russia marks Victory Day with massive parade
Ukraine crisis: Russian victory parade buoyed by Crimea
Russia Stages Largest Victory Day Parade in 20 Years
UPDATE 1-Russia stages big Victory Day parade amid Ukraine crisis
Russia marks Victory Day with vast military parade as insurgents in Ukraine prepare referendum

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