Today, Russia (and a number of other countries in the CIS) is celebrating Defenders of the Motherland Day, which is unofficially regarded as a holiday honouring all men. On this day, our country shall pay tribute and give respectful gratitude to its servicemen and army and fleet veterans who continue the glorious traditions of the Russian army. Defenders of the Motherland Day is ranked among the most revered holidays in Russia, it is a day of tribute to military glory, reflecting the continuity of our military tradition and showing respect for those standing guard for our country’s security.
Yesterday, a greeting to army heroes came from President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Dmitri Medvedev. “I greet all servicemen and civilian personnel of the Armed Forces on Defenders of the Motherland Day, a holiday which he said had long grown beyond the bounds of the military into a nationwide occasion. It is our tribute of respect to those who are serving their Motherland to protect the sovereignty and national interests of our country and continue its glorious traditions. Today, first of all, I would like to offer my heartfelt greetings to our dear World War II veterans. They were a truly great generation, who protected our motherland and defended our freedom”.
At present, the army has much work to do as Russia and the whole world are facing serious challenges. Let us not forget that, last August, Georgia launched a campaign of aggression against South Ossetia, which came as a serious blow not only to innocent civilians, but, also, to the Russian peace-keeping forces patrolling the conflict region. Russia managed to stop the bloodshed and prevented a humanitarian catastrophe. Thus, once again, it was proven that when it comes to its defence, Russia should rely only on its own army and navy. Nowadays, by the way, the Russian fleet is on duty off the African coasts fighting piracy on the open sea.
Traditionally, on 23 February, in all Russian cities, veterans and ordinary people take part in festive events such as solemn parades, formal meetings, and concerts dedicated to the holiday. Tonight, thirty volleys will be fired in a special holiday salute and a massive and splendid fireworks display will be seen in Moscow in memory of those who fell in defence of the motherland and in honour of our living veterans who fought for freedom and peace. Thusly, Russia honours its heroes who wrote some of the most glorious pages in the chronicle of our national history.
23 February 2009
Voice of Russia World Service
We have so few of the World War II generation left amongst us, and one can see their departure from us is not long (as the World War I cohort is already gone, I remember them from my childhood… sic transit Gloria mundi…). If you can, say “thank you” to these brave men and women, if you meet them. If it were not for their selfless courage and sacrifice, the murderous Nazi scum and their filthy collaborationist running-dog-lackeys (such as the Ustashi, UPA, and the Baltic legions, amongst others) would have plunged the world into a dark night of barbarism, slavery, and racially-based despotism. The danger of the “New World Order” was real and this generation had the grit and guts to lay it low.
All glory to the fallen heroes! All honour to the living veterans! Eternal Memory to those heroes who have passed from amongst us! The debt we owe them is incalculable.
Thank you! You saved the world from unbridled evil…