Krasnodar, 8 May. The Kuban region has had a peculiar fate in the struggle with the Nazi invaders. Our land has survived the occupation, guerilla movement, long-awaited liberation, and difficult years of reconstruction after the devastation. The Kuban people, highly devoted to their homeland, have defended it and helped defend the others.
Ivan Kovbasi, a war veteran from the village of Otradnaya, recalls: “In 1943, I was conscripted and brought to Armavir, where I finished the regimental mortar-gunners’ training school and received a sergeant’s rank. We were sent to combat forces to Krasnodar. The city had already been liberated by then, but the German troops did stay behind it. We took part in the liberation of Yelizavetinskaya, Marianskaya and further on in that direction [to the Taman peninsula]. I was a platoon commander. It was very difficult there – all the time in entrenchments, it’s all over marshy and reedy banks there, near Krasnodar.”
Yevdokia Fedorenko from Novoleushkovskaya: “ I was in an air defence unit; we were shooting at aircraft. You shouldn’t think that it was as simple as that – to down a plane, while every aircraft had a peculiar speed and angle! To fight is not a female business, but we had to get used to it. We were getting used to everything, because we had to. We were fighting for the peace on the Earth. We were brought up that Fatherland is a sacred thing, and people must fight for it.”
In the Kuban region, there were a great many of bloody battles during that war. Every battle proved very expensive for the soldiers as well as for those who were waiting for them at home. Every battle later turned into a golden page in the history of the region, the war, and Fatherland. Now Kuban cities and villages carefully keep the history of the fights that took place on their sites, and proudly recount them.
“Starting from the very first hours, the new ‘hosts’ of our Korenovsk land became aware of strong resistance,” Sergei Goloborodko, Head of Korenovsk rayon, says. “In the autumn of 1941, the Mountainous guerrilla regiment was formed. It annihilated about 200 Nazi soldiers and officers, 12 vehicles and 20 carts carrying military hardware and arms; two bridges were exploded.”
“For the inhabitants of Tuapse, the Victory Day has been and will always remain the most sacred holiday,” Mayor Anatoli Rusin explains. “It’s a heroic land, where every centimetre has been shed with the blood of Soviet soldiers who did not let the Nazis to the city and cut their way to the sea and the oil. The victorious liberation of the Kuban land from the invaders began from here.”
Twenty-five thousand German soldiers and officers perished at Tuapse. The victory came at a huge price – the losses of Soviet warriors amounted to 100,000.
The world for which the Kuban heroes fought is now often shaken with social and economic crises. The so much awaited jubilee anniversary suddenly ran into an unexpected obstacle, the worldwide pandemic of a new disease. But lack of parades and processions will not become the reason to miss the memorable date for those who have always paid tribute to Victory Day.
“This year, the date is being met in self-isolation conditions, which will show whether one’s patriotism is genuine or just feigned,” Denis Rashitov, tutor of the Abinsk detachment of the Young Cossack League, says. “However valuable, the participation in mass events is just an outside attiribute. For some people, Victory Day may be even an entertainment, an occasion to grill barbecue. But real patriotism is when you have some feeling of exultation and rejoice, a wish to share it with the younger generations, to thank the veterans and to do something for them.”
Follow our news on Facebook