St. Petersburg marks anniversary of Leningrad siege
Thursday 08 September 2011
Air-raid warnings roared in Russia's second-largest city as residents commemorated the 70th anniversary of the start of a deadly, 29-month Nazi siege that reduced its population by nearly a million people.
Public loudspeakers in St. Petersburg, along with radio and television stations, broadcast the warnings as well as the sounds of a metronome used during the World War II siege to tell residents of the raids and the all-clear announcements.
The 872-day-long siege of the city, then known as Leningrad, is one of the darkest moments of Russia's participation in the war. A million city residents are believed to have died — of hunger, bombings and while defending the city's outskirts.
Nina Dmitriyeva, 80, was in the city during the whole siege. She says that like most Leningrad residents, she and her mother lived on rations of bread and glue that they used to cook soup.
"I remember that it tasted delicious back then," she told The Associated Press in an interview.
Dmitriyeva has fond memories of US aid — including canned ham and fish — that began trickling into the city via a perilous route through Lake Ladoga in 1943.
"I liked that ham so much, and I've been trying to find ham like it ever since, but I never did," she said.
St. Petersburg residents gathered in Nevsky Prospekt, where one building still bears a painted World War II warning telling people to stay off this side of the street during air-raids. Hundreds of people laid flowers under the sign in the pouring rain.
Meanwhile, some of the survivors toured schools to tell young people of the terrifying experience.
Irina Skripacheva, who was in primary school during the siege, said people grew tired of constant bombings, but that everyone, including children, did their best to stay sane.
"Air-raid sirens were driving everyone mad," she said. "But even small children, unaware of what was happening, tried not to cry."
Detective novelist who wrote Death comes to Pemberley passed away peacefully at her home, aged 94
Lincoln MP Karl McCartney 'denied all knowledge' of the Twitter activity
Sites using the popular Gigya comment platform were attacked by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA)
- 1 'Kidnapped boy may have been abused and murdered by VIP paedophile ring,' say police
- 2 Ridley Scott on Exodus, Gods and Kings casting: 'I'm not going to get it financed if my lead actor is Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such'
- 3 Girl, 7, gets Tesco to remove 'stupid' sign suggesting superheroes are 'for boys'
- 4 This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
- 5 'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
Black Friday 2014: Opening times for Asda, John Lewis, GAME, PC World and Argos
Miss Honduras Maria Jose Alvarado's stylist Luis Alfredo Garcia is found stabbed to death
Dr Lam Hoe Yeoh: Voyeur doctor jailed for eight years after using network of hidden cameras to film patients, colleagues and friends on the toilet
'You should come to my house and eat cheeses with me': 4-year-old sends adorable love letter to girl at school
Scientists predict green energy revolution after incredible new graphene discoveries
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Bollywood actress Veena Malik sentenced to 26 years in jail for blasphemy after appearing in mock TV wedding scene
£8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: You will need to be able to follow instructio...
£10000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion the Largest In...
£17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion the Largest Independent...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Langley James : CRM Services Manager; West London u...