It is now a well-established tradition that the annual 9th May military parade held in Moscow’s Red Square to celebrate the anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory in the Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany includes an aviation component. The first such flypast was in 1995, but since 2005 it has become annual – weather permitting, of course. In recent years the number of participating aircraft equals the number of years that have passed since the war; this year, the 77th anniversary Victory Day flypast was to include 77 assorted aircraft – 15 helicopters and 62 fixed-wing aircraft.
After a long break since 1995 when the 50th anniversary of VE-Day was celebrated, the Russian Air Force’s participation in the traditional Victory Day military parades in Moscow’s Red Square resumed in 2008. This year the Air Force was involved on a much larger scale than previously, putting up 69 assorted fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft.