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6 Dec, 2006 09:59

Russian capital to celebrate 65th anniversary of Battle of Moscow

Russian capital to celebrate 65th anniversary of Battle of Moscow

It has been 65 years since the Battle of Moscow, which is seen as one of the turning points in World War II and a key to the allied victory. Many believe it was one of the battles that helped win the war.

Still it is one of the lesser known events in the overall history of World War II.

Moscow stood firm during 20 days of fighting and bloodshed involving millions of soldiers and officers and thousands of units of machinery – and stopped the enemy barely 20 kilometres from its centre.  

On December 5, 1941 Russian troops began their counter-offensive against the Nazi army.  

By that point, Hitler’s forces were the strongest in the world – not only in numbers, but in terms of preparation as well. What the troops were not prepared for was the force of the resistance that met them on the way to the Soviet capital.  

However, the battle of Moscow was not a fact recognised worldwide – or even in Russia itself. For many years, it was viewed in the light of Stalinist politics and thus not really spoken about. The Western countries like the UK, United States and France perceived Russia through the politics of the Cold War and were also unable to take an impartial view of the event. 

So the 65th anniversary of the battle offers an occasion to look back to attribute it a place in history it, that many now say it deserves.