Voices from Russia

Sunday, 3 December 2017

3 December 2017. Day of the Unknown Soldier

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Many thousands of Red Army men lie in unmarked graves. They gave their lives to rid the world of evil. That’s all that one has to say. I bow with respect to their podvig*. We owe our very lives and freedom to their sacrifice.

  • 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.

BMD

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Tuesday, 28 November 2017

28 November 2017. Heroes of the Russian Land

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The five brothers of the Nikolaev family not only all fought in the VOV, all returned home alive at its end. Americans don’t understand that the war in Europe against the fascists was already won when they entered it… the tide had already turned. That happened on 5 December 1941, the opening of the Soviet counteroffensive outside Moscow. This was the first real defeat handed the Wehrmacht… it was the “end of the beginning”. In the next year, Stalingrad was the “beginning of the end”… before any appreciable American forces had landed in Europe. There’s nothing dishonourable in what America did in Europe in the Great War Against Fascism… they made a contribution, not the most major contribution, but they were the largest of what we Russians call “the Little Allies”. The USA helped to defeat the fascists, but the fascists were already on the run before the USA entered the war. Note well that the childish Anglos claim credit that isn’t theirs to take. The credit belongs to millions of families such as the Nikolaevs… sadly, all too many had an empty space at table at the end of the war. The credit also belongs to I V Stalin, who refused to cave in, like the French did. The Nikolaevs and countless others (along with the families who raised them) were the real victors. The Anglos helped… but they weren’t the driving force behind the Great Victory.

Спасибо деду до победу!

BMD

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

14 November 2017. They All Had Faces… They All Had Names…

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It’s been 16 years since the death of my beloved grandmother, Valentina Alekseyevna Arno (1921-2001), whom I wrote about many times, including here.

+Вечная ей память!

She was born in 1921 in a family of Swiss descent (the family had become Orthodox in the 19th-century and was fully-Russified by the turn of the 20th-century). This young village schoolteacher went to the front during the VOV to liberate Europe, from which, many years earlier, her great-grandfather Stefan Arno had come to a prosperous Russian Empire. She took part in the liberation of Byelorussia, served in Poland, and ended the war in Berlin, where she wrote the four Russian letters of her French surname on the wall of the Reichstag.

13 November 2017

Mikhail Tyurenkov

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Friday, 10 November 2017

Rostov-on-Don to Erect Monument to Famed Spy Richard Sorge, Not Solzhenitsyn

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Rostov-on-Don decided to erect a monument to famed Soviet spy Richard Sorge instead of one to Solzhenitsyn. The monument will be near School nr 80, named after Sorge. The decision to install the memorial took place at the last meeting [of the committee] on the names of socially-significant places. The recently-deceased Honoured Sculptor of Russia A A Apollonov created a bust of Sorge as a part of the project “Alley of Russian Glory”. The dedication of the memorial will be sometime in November.

Richard Sorge was a Soviet spy of the 20th-century, stationed in Japan, who had a cover as a German journalist. He received the award of Hero of the Soviet Union posthumously in 1964. One of the streets in Rostov-on-Don is Ulitsa Sorge.

8 November 2017

Lyubov Aleksandrovna Shlyapkina

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