Monday, May 9, 2011

Victory Day (May 9)

Today, May 9, is a day commemorating the victory over the Nazi army in World War II.  Or, as the war is called here, the Great Patriotic War.

In America, we recognize D-Day on June 6, but May 9 was when the Nazi army surrendered to the Soviet army.  Today is a holiday, and everyone has the day off (even KCA!).  The above photo is of Red Square, when the soldiers threw down the German banners in a pile to be burned.  I've seen old video footage of this parade and event, and there is a feeling of great triumph.  The soldiers are yelling "Hoorah! Hoorah!"

Here is a video of the 1945 parade.  Since you probably don't understand what's going on, I will point you to specific clips.  I wish I could sit beside you and point out specific things and translate as the video plays.
1:22 Holding the Nazi flags that they've "captured"
2:30 Stalin is one of those important guys, overlooking the parade.  A few moments later is when the parade actually begins, but you can fast forward to 4:57, where there is a gun salute.  Then they all march, grouped by their "fronts" -- 1st Belorussian front, for instance. After a few moments of that, switch to the Part 2 video.

Part 2 of the 1945 Victory Day Parade:
0:59 Throwing the Nazi Germany banners in a pile (watch until 1:29)

I never realized how massive this parade was -- the clips of these videos shown in the War Museum only total about 5 minutes, if that!  I just finished fastforwarding through these videos, and I couldn't really find them yelling "Hoorah!" like in the museum's clips.  Sorry about that -- you'll just have to come here and see the clip for yourself at the museum. :)

Yesterday I walked around the National Botanical Garden with a friend, and the place was packed!  People were enjoying the sort of-nice spring weather and the holiday weekend.


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