On December 6, Ukraine celebrates the Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. This day is a public holiday, but unlike Defender's Day, it is not supported by an additional day off on the calendar. On the holiday, it is customary to congratulate everyone who is associated with the Ukrainian army.
We will tell you the Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine started to be celebrated, who should be congratulated and what events are planned for this day.
Why December 6? History of the holiday
The Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine began to be celebrated annually in 1993 in accordance with the resolution of the Verkhovna Rada. The date of the holiday is timed to the adoption of the Law of Ukraine On the Armed Forces of Ukraine from December 6, 1991.
After the proclamation of independence, the country began preparing the legal framework for the creation of national armed forces. The formation of the national army was accompanied by the reorganization of the armed forces of the former USSR, creation of new structures and management bodies.
The modern army of Ukraine has come a long way of development. In 2013, funding for the national defense sector was significantly reduced. In the spring of 2014, the troops were put on alert, and mobilization was announced in March. In 2015, the Ukraine-2020 program was approved and the Strategic Defense Bulletin was updated to reform the system.
However, historians point out that another significant event took place on December 6. In 1919, the first winter campaign of the active army of the Ukrainian People's Republic began. Cossacks and the foremen of the reorganized active army of the UPR, who remained in the ranks and did not want to switch to either side, under the command of Mykhailo Omelianovych-Pavlenko set off on a raid along the enemy's rear. Then the presence of the Ukrainian army, which continued to fight, gave grounds for Symon Petliura to negotiate on the help of the Poles in the liberation of Ukraine.
Whom to congratulate?
Armed Forces of Ukraine consist of the Land Forces, Air Forces, Special Operations Forces, Naval Forces, regular and contract army, border guards, internal troops. Each of these units has its own professional holiday, but December 6 is a common holiday for all the country's military personnel.
mechanized and tank units, highly mobile airborne troops and missile forces. Also, the Armed Forces of Ukraine have internal troops, a border service and an operational and rescue service of civil protection of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine.
The Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is the President of Ukraine. Direct command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in peacetime and wartime is carried out by the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Today not only current military personnel is congratulated, but also those who served earlier. On the Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, it is also customary to honor the deceased soldiers.
How will it be celebrated this year?
Events to show the importance of the army to the country are usually held on this day. President traditionally congratulates the servicemen; a flower-laying ceremony is also held at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Concerts (in 2020, most likely, this will not happen), exhibitions, and other events are also held. Here are some of them.
Ukrainian Institute of National Memory prepared a traveling exhibition in different cities (in particular, in Poltava, Cherkasy, Odesa) for the Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine named “Warriors. History of the Ukrainian army.” The exposition includes 20 stories about the history of military formations from the time of Rus (Kyivan Rus) to the present. This makes it possible to look into the past and see what were the uniforms and weapons of Ukrainian soldiers in different historical eras. The photographs are shown with information about the type of military organization, the number and armament of the troops, the methods of military art, and the greatest battles.
On the Day of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, a presentation of the project on the servicemen “United” will take place in the premises of the Information and Exhibition Center of the Maidan Museum in Kyiv. This project collected the stories of people from the southern and eastern regions who fought in the east.