Russian President Vladimir Putin considered that his country was facing an all-out war, and said that the world was at a “turning point”, accusing Western countries of plotting a war against Russia, before calling for victory during the military celebrations in Red Square in Moscow.
In front of thousands of soldiers and the political elite gathered to commemorate the victory over Nazism in 1945, today (Tuesday) Putin added that civilization is again at a turning point, a war has broken out against our Motherland.
Amidst strict security measures, the military parade kicked off in Moscow’s Red Square, in the presence of President Putin. State television broadcast scenes of the president next to World War II veterans in Red Square, where thousands of uniformed Russian soldiers gathered to celebrate in a march accompanied by a military band.
Today Russia celebrates the anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany in World War II with a parade in Red Square amid tight security in the wake of a series of drone attacks, including an attack on the Kremlin itself that Moscow blames on Ukraine. This comes as fierce battles continue on the fronts with Ukraine.
On this day, the Russians commemorate the sacrifices made by the Soviet Union during what is known as the Great Patriotic War between 1941 and 1945, which claimed the lives of about 27 million citizens. The anniversary this year takes on another dimension with Russia’s funeral of thousands of soldiers who were killed in the 15-month-old war in Ukraine, which shows no signs of ending.
Putin, Russia’s defense minister and other senior officials are expected to witness a parade in Red Square that usually includes tanks, intercontinental missile launchers and infantry soldiers.
The Russian authorities canceled flights, reflecting tight security measures, in part because of the drone attacks. Reports pointed out that fewer soldiers and military equipment participated in the parade this year because the Ukrainian war severely drains men and equipment. And the authorities canceled processions in which people carry pictures of their relatives who fought Nazism.
Asked about the cancellation of some Victory Day events, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov blamed Ukraine, saying: “When we really have to deal with a state sponsor of terrorism, it is better to take preemptive measures.”