Sunday, May 9, 2010

An Historical Event

Foreign troops marched in Red Square today as part of the Russian V.E. Day celebrations.  Troops from Allied nations - USA, Great Britain, France and Poland participated in the huge parade involving some 11,000 troops and a 1000 person band. 

The last time there were foreign troops (not counting troops from various countries of the Russian/Soviet Empire, of course) on Red Square may well have been 1812 during Napoleon's brief stopover. 

Angela Merkel was in the crowd of dignitaries. Prince Charles was not, though he offered.

It was the first time since the dissolution of the USSR that military hardware was on parade.  I was interested in the T-34's and the old WWII uniforms more than the modern stuff.  I have no way of knowing if the modern weaponry displayed is  technically advanced or if it would be effective against an enemy armed with similar stuff.  It is great stuff for the last war (they clobbered mighty Georgia) but not likely too useful for the next wars if Afghanistan, Chechnya, Sudan and Iraq are any indication. 

There were many old men and women in uniform, loaded with medals, tears in their eyes, as they remembered The Great Patriotic War.  The hardships, the suffering, the loved ones lost.  And they looked some proud as the soldiers marched and the hardware rolled past.

The USSR was never defeated.  It collapsed from within of its own weight.  Destroyed by Gorbachev and Yeltsin if you ask the person on the street.  This leaves a great deal of room for "stabbed in the back" theories and for machinations around extreme nationalism. Sound familiar?  Stay tuned.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! My current status of being busier than a one armed paper hanger has caused me to miss 90% of the news in recent weeks. Foreign troops in Red Square? That is indeed an event of historical and more than likely geo-political signifigance. Yes, we are entering some very interesting times.

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