Victory Parade Gets Underway In Moscow

A military parade devoted to the 56-th anniversary of the Soviet Union's victory in the 1941-1945 Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany began here today. At first, the Victory Banner was carried by three servicemen across the Red square from St. Basil cathedral all the way to the right flank of the parade formation. The banner group is commanded by captain Vasily Gorbachev, who fought in Afghanistan, and who also took part in 10 military parades on the Red Square. The parade is commanded by Col.-Gen. Nikolai Makarov, who heads the Moscow military district's headquarters, in line with a presidential decree. For his own part, Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov acts as parade inspector. The current parade is inspected by a civilian defense minister for the first time in this country's history, what with parade details addressing him in accordance with his position, rather than his military rank.

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