Since 2014, 3 December marks the Day of the Unknown Soldier… in memory of Russian and Soviet soldiers who died fighting in our homeland or in foreign parts. In October 2014, the RF Gosduma passed a law establishing the holiday and President of the Russian Federation V V Putin signed the corresponding decree on 5 November 2014. The holiday is “justified by the need to perpetuate the memory of the valour and the immortal podvigs* of Russian and Soviet soldiers killed at home or abroad, whose name remains unknown”, as an aid to strengthen patriotic consciousness. The lawmakers chose 3 December as the date because the solemn reburial of the remains of the Unknown Soldier in the Aleksandrovsky Sad by the Kremlin Wall (to mark the 25th anniversary of the defeat of the fascist aggressors near Moscow) occurred on 3 December 1966. However, as noted the law noted, the Day of the Unknown Soldier isn’t just a day of remembrance for those killed in the Great Patriotic War, but it commemorates all those killed and missing during all our wars and armed conflicts. This is a tribute to all those who died at the front, to the memory of every soldier, who defended our motherland, but whose graves are unknown, even to their relatives and descendants. Nevertheless, all of them… all heroes of our country… live in our collective memory, so it’s important to cherish and to pass on from generation to generation this memory. The famous line “No one is forgotten, nothing is forgotten” is the symbol of this day.
- Podvig: Should NEVER be “Englished”… one of the most powerful words in the Russian language. There are literally no English equivalents strong enough. Podvig has overtones of “epic”, “heroic”, “bravery”, “self-sacrifice”, “victory”, “effort”, and “triumph”. It’s best to leave it as is, and admit that English lacks the necessary material to give meaning to this word.