May 9 marks the end of what is known in Russia as the Great Patriotic War, the decisive part of World War II fought between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. The first parade to commemorate the victory was staged on Red Square on June 24, 1945. However, apart from the anniversaries in 1965 and 1985, the Victory Day celebrations in the Soviet Union did not feature a military parade. The tradition started only in 1995.
About 16,000 soldiers, including service personnel in historical uniforms and military brass bands, 194 armored vehicles, and 150 aircraft and helicopters took part in the Moscow parade this year. The legendary T-34 medium tank and SU-100 tank hunter appeared on Red Square alongside their modern equivalents. Among the highlights there are an intercontinental ballistic missile system called Yars and a next generation Armata tank with a remote-controlled turret.
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