Around 11pm May 8th 1945, the Fascists officially surrendered to the Allies in WWII. In the US, there are several holidays to commemorate those who have served in wars, or are still serving, but we lack any particular WWII remembrance day. Rhode Island is the only state to have a holiday commemorating Victory over Japan, due to the disproportionate number of young men sent off and lost to the pacific theater.
In the Soviet Union, more than 27 million lives were lost during WWII, and a large portion of the war was fought on their own soil. For this reason, the Russians call it the Great Patriotic War. Victory Day is celebrated, in usual Russian tradition on local time, May 9th. 23:05 May 8th Germany was around 1:05 in the morning the next day in Moscow.
This year is the first show of military might since the fall of the USSR. jets, tanks, rockets and about 8,000 soldiers marched through Red Square saluting the new inaugurated Russian President, Dimitry Medvedev. The new President didn’t say anything controversial as was expected (Or as his predecessor, Soon-to-be Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, would have done). Instead, he only vaguely hinted at Russia’s disdain for the US and US foreign policy.
ICBM Launch [via http://englishrussia.com/]
Finally, on our walk around afterwards there were some Communists setup pitifully looking for attention. Mostly it was older women with hand written signs asking not to be forgotten, and touting the triumphs of the USSR.