(PresidentialWire.com)- During Moscow’s Victory Day celebrations in Red Square on Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin invoked the memory of the Soviet Union’s victory in World War Two to inspire the troops. But what he was unable to do was declare victory in Ukraine.
While addressing the military personnel on Red Square, Putin condemned the so-called external threats that he claimed wanted to weaken and divide Russia.
Without mentioning Ukraine by name, the Russian president directed his words to the forces fighting in the Donbas region, saying they were fighting for the future of the Motherland “so that no one forgets the lessons of World War Two.” He vowed that their fight would ensure that there would be “no place in the world for executioners, castigators, and Nazis.”
Putin’s speech included a moment of silence for the Russian soldiers and officers killed in battle. He vowed that Russia would look after their families.
During his 11-minute address, the Russian president provided no assessment of the progress of the invasion or how long the war would continue. He didn’t mention Ukraine by name a single time, even in offering a moment of silence for the fallen.
Putin’s speech was followed by a military parade with troops marching in formation as military hardware, including tanks, missile systems, and intercontinental ballistic missiles rolled through Red Square. The scheduled military flyover, however, was canceled due to weather conditions.
After the parade, Putin laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and placed red carnations at the memorials honoring the Soviet Hero Cities that resisted German forces during World War Two. Among the Soviet Hero Cities commemorated are the Ukrainian cities of Kyiv and Odesa.
It was recently reported that Putin had hoped to use the 77th anniversary of the Soviet defeat of Nazi Germany to declare some kind of victory in Ukraine.
But over 75 days into the fighting, Russian forces have yet to deliver victory anywhere. The attempts to capture Kyiv failed, the more limited objective to take Donbas is still out of reach, and resistance continues in Mariupol in the south.