Celebrations for the 70th Anniversary of the lifting of the blockade on Leningrad
22 January, 2014
It’s pretty obvious that St. Petersburg is a very historic city. Walking down almost any street provides evidence of the its glorious past. But sadly, not all of the city’s history is so bright, especially during the Second World War or Great Patriotic War (Великая Отечественная война) as it’s known in Russia.
For 900 days between 8 September 1941 – 27 January 1944, the Siege of Leningrad (блокада Ленинграда) by fascist forces persisted. Hardly any food, supplies or people could make it in or out of the city, leading to mass starvation and the death of hundreds of thousands of Leningraders.
The only way to supply the city was across the frozen Lake Ladoga (Ладога) east of the city during the winter months. This route was treacherous, as trucks often broke through the ice and sank to the bottom of the lake. Despite the dangers, the resupply of the city continued and earned the route across the lake the name The Road of Life (Дорога жизни).
Despite the hardships, the city’s residents and the Red Army worked together to hold off the attackers and eventually, break the blockade allowing them to reestablish communications and supply lines with the city. The blockade was fully lifted on the 27th of January, 1944, 70 years ago next Monday.
To celebrate this anniversary of the longest and most destructive siege of a city in human history, the city of Saint Petersburg is arranging a variety of events to honor those who fought and died in the heroic defense of the city.
If you want to see the celebrations:
– On Nepokorennyh prospekt there will be a parade of historic Tanks, military equipment and troops dressed in historic uniforms.
– At 21:00 all around the city, (Nepokorennyh prospekt, Peter and Paul Fortress and elsewhere) there will be fireworks displays.
– At 19:00 on Nevsky Prospekt, there will be a mass passing of candles down the prospekt towards Palace Square.
-At Palace Square, there will be a large projection of images from the siege onto the side of the General Staff Building.