The 60th anniversary of the Russian Revolution has been celebrated in Moscow by a huge military parade through Red Square.
The 60th anniversary of the Russian Revolution has been celebrated in Moscow by a huge military parade through Red Square. Held in extremely cold weather on Monday 7 November, the parade included tanks not seen before by Western observers and a display of the Soviet Union's latest missiles. Before the parade began, the Soviet Defence Minister Marshall Ustinov said the Soviet Union would continue to strengthen its forces because "imperialist circles were striving to obstruct detente."
SYNOPSIS: Soviet President Leonid Brezhnev and other members of the Politburo reviewed the troops and vehicles on display from their traditional post on Lenin's marbel mausoleum.
Led by trumpeters, a huge band provided stirring music for the parade as it swept past a giant post of Lenin.
Thousand of jackbooted, goose-stepping soldiers led the parade through Red Square as millions of Soviet citizens watched the spectacle on television. The parade was also broadcast 'live' to million more in East European countries.
Following the soldiers came unit of the Soviet Navy, They were dressed in dark blue wool uniforms. The parade followed a week of celebrations and months of pre-parade publicity.
As soon as the marchers had left the cobblestoned square, the tremendous roar of machinery was heard and the parade's centre of attraction rumbled into view. Never before seen by Western observers, the Soviet Union's newest tanks, 46 of them, led the show of military muscle.
President Brezhnev answered the tank commanders' salutes and beamed approval as new surface-to-air missiles rolled past, carried by multi-axled launchers. It was the biggest show of Soviet weaponry for several years taking 35 minutes to pass.
Some of the Soviet Union's top generals joined the parade, which despite its military accent, was not totally concerned with weaponry. There was also a colourful series of displays like this one.
President Brezhnev has become the centre of much of the anniversary celebrations. A postage stamp bearing his portrait is being issued to coincided with the anniversary. Thousands of Moscow workers, who had gathered at Red Square from six in the morning, marched past carrying flags, banners, flowers and portraits of the man who is credited with beginning the Russian Revolution, Lenin.
Thousands of athletes, youths and workers performed elaborate routines, including one which spelt out the initials of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. As President Brezhnev and the Politburo chiefs stood above Lenin's tomb, more than 100 delegations from foreign Communist and left-wing parties, including some heads of State, watched the parade from specially prepared review stands.