Russia Parades Military Might
The occasion was to celebrate the 63rd anniversary of the victory overy nazi Germany, which is a state holiday in Russia.
Nuclear missile launchers and columns of tanks rolled through Red Square Friday in a display of martial hardware not seen in front of the Kremlin since the waning days of the Soviet Union.
The parade, smaller in scale than similar commemorations in the Soviet period but laden with significance and mixed messages, marked the 63rd anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany, which is observed in Russia as a solemn state holiday.
It was intended as a tribute to the surviving veterans and as a display of Russia’s efforts to revive armed forces left moribund by the Soviet Union’s collapse.
But the goose-stepping footfalls, echoing in front of shop windows bearing products from Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior, captured as well the contrasts institutionalized during eight years of rule by former President Vladimir V. Putin, who left office on Wednesday and returned to power as prime minister the following day.