The Second World War killed every third Belarusian and burned down almost all our cities and villages. For more than 7 decades it is the pivot, around which the Belarusian nation is being formed: each year lots of money is spent on military parades and decorations. As the tank tracks tear up the tarmac roads during the show, more and more veterans pass away after the celebration. For the veterans each successive Victory Day parade is a line, which they need to reach and once again – perhaps, for the last time – meet a few of their friends who are still alive.
And time will come when no one marches on Victory Day parades and receives commemorative medals. Would it mean the end of parades? The noisy and colourful shows are nothing without real heroes, who need support with pensions and benefits they can live on, not survive. Will the state carry on with wasting the budgets on «playing at soldiers»?
Many countries were involved in wars and abandoned the practice of military parades long ago, while some post-Soviet states continue to stamp boots in response to their own question: «What if the war breaks tomorrow?»