Before you start scanning the photos below and thinking we ended up in trouble somewhere, please read first!
These pictures are all from a different era, an era called Spring 2013. A time when no one even had the faintest suspicion of conflict, when war was something people associated with their grandparents.
This was the 70th reenactment of the Battle of Sokolovo, the fight of a few hundred Czech / Soviet soldiers against over 2,000 German soldiers. The hero of the day- although he did not live to see the honor- was a Czech soldier named Otakar Yarosh. Yarosh was the first foreigner to receive the title of Hero of the Soviet Union and (last I heard) there's still a street named after him in Kharkiv.
Anyway, D didn't know all that history when some friends called up that March and issued an invitation to the reenactment. He came back at the end of the day, red-cheeked and chilled hands, with all of these photos. We had some complicated plan to share them on the blog... which never happened. So, two long years later, here they are.
I'm not sure what happened to the photos of the actual battle scenes... somehow those are missing from the file and I'm left with the meet-and-greet kind of pictures. If you're a history buff, there's news coverage of the entire event here (tank battle starts around minute 16) and more high-quality photos here. There were approximately 400 Ukrainian and Czech soldiers participating in costume that day. This took place near Sokolove, about a one-hour bus ride from Kharkiv.
Aaaaand, no more words- the rest of the photos!
|Inside a nearby museum.|
|Kharkiv WWII pictures.|
Extra credit: this guy's video.