The Faces of the War

Лица13It’s easy for us (especially in America) to think of war as something that happens far away with tanks and soldiers. But for Europeans, and specifically the Soviets during World War II, it was by no means something that was happening far away.

Today I’ve compiled several pictures from World War II from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus to help us remember the human part of war.  As I look at these pictures I just can’t imagine what it would be like to have to be a mother or a wife during this war.

Today the focus is on the faces of the people who lived in the middle of this terror. I purposely want today’s post to be depressing so that tomorrow when I post about the victory and the celebration you can really understand why May 9th is such a joyous day in these countries now–because it meant an end to this…














6 thoughts on “The Faces of the War

  1. These pictures are so sad- war is terrible!

  2. When my grandmother returned to Leningrad from evacuation, she and her brother were so dirty so it was easier and safer to just burn their clothes. And their relatives did exactly that. Also, for the first several months her brother tried to never leave home because he feared that he would miss his meal.

    But my grandmother never talked about that. Not even once. When I asked her about the war and blockade she would only tell that she was small and that their family was evacuated. But on her birthday last year there was a rather talkative old lady I had never seen before. And she told us a story about grandmother’s family return to Leningrad. My grandmother seemed displeased at her talkativeness but thankfuly she didn’t stop her…

    1. That is pretty common for the people who lived through it to not want to talk about it. My friend’s grandma who lived in Kiev during WWII also won’t talk about it. Every now and then she’ll mention something and it’s clear it was all very horrific. 68 years later and people still can’t talk about it. It’s hard for us to imagine what they must have seen.

  3. Sad yet great pictures. It is a shame that in today’s Europe, some people would only see Russia as a threat, instead of sympathizing with how much the common Russian men and women had gone through during those years ;( I come from China, and I have heard about the horrid past of my country torn by wars and revolutions from my parents and grandparents; so I somehow feel that I can fully sympathize with Russia.

    By the way, you have a great blog. It is rare to see someone coming from the West having such an appreciative and sympathetic attitude towards Russia and the former Soviet bloc. As I am learning Russian at the moment, it is very helpful. Keep up the good job!

  4. The fifth picture from the end, does not refer to the period of the Second World War , this image is often referred to as the nineties of the twentieth century ( in the background are clearly visible railcars used in Russia during the eighties and nineties ) , the photo reminds of Russian civilians who were forced to leave their homes and leave the Chechen republic fleeing from terror and atrocities of the Chechen Islamic terrorists and racists in the nineties .

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