The magic of the May 9th Victory Parade is gone. Warplanes did not fly over Moscow's Red Square last year, and this year there will be no parades in Russian regional centres near Ukraine. Maybe not in Moscow either.
The parade was cancelled due to the threat of terrorist attacks. Security is a primary concern, according to official announcements. But the question remains - does Russia even have a reason to celebrate the power of its army and does it have anything to show that power? And the most important question - do people still believe in the symbolism of May 9th Victory Day?
The spirit of the May parade has begun to change since Putin's famous speech at the Munich Security Conference in 2007, when he accused the West of cheating Russia after the collapse of the USSR and continuing to expand NATO towards its borders.
Since then, year after year, the May 9 Victory Day has been getting more and more glorious.
“We can repeat” Day
During the old the days when Russia had not yet started spinning a victorious narrative, and even during the Soviet days, the May 9 Victory Day was generally a remembrance day, a day when people paid tribute to fallen people and the sacrifice the USSR made during WW2.
It was a sad day, as the famous Russian song says: a day with tears in eyes.
In the second half of 2000s, somewhere around the Ukrainian Orange Revolution, the traditional May 9 Victory Day started being reshaped into something which resembled pagan festivities.
It was no longer just a day with “tears in eyes”. It started being a glorification of war and future victories.
Around that time, the slogan “we can repeat” started to be associated with the May 9 Victory Day. It meant that the Russians could repeat beating the enemy.
At the same time, many people in Moscow and other Russian cities during the time close to May 9th Victory Day started attaching bizarre stickers to their automobiles with various horrific signs, including: “to Berlin”, “a trophy from Berlin”, “to Berlin for German women”, “T-34” and “we can repeat”.
All these signs clearly meant nothing but aggression against Germany, similar to the sign “to Berlin for German women” which clearly meant something very similar to sex crimes the Russian army is currently committing in Ukraine.
Somewhere around 2010, the May 9 Victory Day turned into a more or less satanic ceremony glorifying the war, military might, and the dead.
It was no longer an attribute to the fallen soldiers. It was a glorification of victory, and self-sacrifice in the name of victory.
Year after year, the May 9th ceremony resembled the Woland’s ball from The Master and Margarita, by Mikhail Bulgakov.
However, in the book, Woland’s ball was only for a chosen few. In today’s Russia, Putin’s May 9 ball was for the entire country, impacting the country’s genetic code, making it a country which sought victorious glory and self-sacrifice in the name of military glory.
Soldiers in Ukraine raised on May 9th ritual
These young Russian soldiers who have been participating in horrible atrocities in Ukraine today were raised and bred over the course of many years in this Russian worshipping of war, military might, victorious greatness and a nearly religious exceptionalism of Russia.
The Great Patriotic War and victory in that war has been the core foundation of Russian culture and ideology under Putin’s leadership. Not surprisingly it all echoed well with traditional Russian chauvinism and imperialism.
Most people in Russia didn’t ask questions, everyone enjoyed being a great and one-of-a-kind civilisation, the so-called Russki civilisation as was proclaimed by the ideologists of this Russian victorious delirium.
One day scholars might find many similarities between Putin’s May 9 victory parades and various marches by Nazi Germany under Adolf Hitler.
Both Hitler and Putin made their parades and marches sacral, almost religious, and nearly out of this world.
Many people who have taken part in those events or even witnessed them ended up being in a condition near to trance, or narcotic intoxication.
As always, Putin skilfully used his corruption leverage to incorporate many celebrities into his May 9 rituals.
Russian aggression against Ukraine was planted back in the Soviet and tsarist days but was selected and cultivated in today’s Russian May 9 glorification of the Great Patriotic War victory.
No one rebelled
For many years, the annual May 9 parade was like Christmas day of the Russian religion of war and victory. It was the day most people in Russia embraced their new god of war, victory, and greatness.
Over the years, this victorious cultism has been taking place in Russia as a continuation of Soviet tradition. Russian people were convinced that they are undefeatable, and always on the right side.
“We are Russians, the God is with us” is the name of a book by today’s famous Russian propagandist, Vladimir Solovyev, who spent a great deal of time glorifying the war, victory, and Russian aggression against Ukraine.
Unfortunately, it was relatively easy for Putin and today’s beneficiaries in Russia to spin and maintain this victorious delirium because no one in the world, even Germany, ever objected to this Russian line-crossing victorious madness and particularly super politically incorrect slogans as “to Berlin for German women”.
Everything went wrong in Ukraine for Russia, including the Russian cult of war and victorious greatness.
Russia has nothing to celebrate on May 9
Putin is considering postponing or cancelling the May 9 Victory Parade because Russia has been losing in Ukraine.
Russia is no longer undefeatable and flawless as Russia was originally proclaimed in the Russian temple of war and victorious greatness, the worship which has lasted in Russia for so many years.
Russia has nothing to celebrate on May 9 until Zelensky is hanging somewhere in Moscow, or at least, current Russian territorial gain in Ukraine is secured and undisputed.
Russia has nothing to confront advanced Western military equipment and the desire of the Ukrainian people to be free.
Russia knows that more humiliations will follow unless Russia finds a way to convince Ukraine and its allies to freeze the war and sit down at the negotiating table.
If Russia succeeds in tricking everyone, and, as always, cheats its way through, then Russia will present it to the majority of Russian people as a great victory worth celebrating as never before.
At this point, the Kremlin has nothing to offer the Russian people, many of whom are still under the intoxication of previous victory parades which lasted for so many years.
Unattainable narcotic ecstasy from previous years
Similarly, the Kremlin has nothing to offer to the Russian elites. Russian myths, imaginary facts, and lies collided in Ukraine with the technologically advanced Western war industry and the will of Ukrainian people not to be affiliated with the Russian delirium.
Putin has many decorative Armata tanks to send to Red Square for the parade, but he has no capacity to achieve narcotic ecstasy as he was able to do during the previous May 9 parades.
Putin is afraid of disappointing the masses and the elites. Everyone in Russia now knows that the war in Ukraine has taken a dramatic shift, although most people don’t yet understand why it has happened.
The day enough people in Russia understand that all the victorious madness that lasted for fifteen years was fake, delusional and imaginary and that it will be the end of today’s Russia and the end of Putin.