Russia and other post-Soviet countries call battles on the East European theater of operations during World War Two “the Great Patriotic War”. The war proved a heavy trial for Soviet nations. Victory was won at the cost of huge losses and colossal exploitation of the country’s resources. As the Red Army fought the enemy on the frontline, millions of Soviet citizens self essly worked in the rear to ensure the victory over the enemy. A massive partisan movement developed on the occupied territories of Ukraine, Belarus and Moldavia. The movement inflicted considerable losses upon the enemy. For a special contribution into the victory over the common enemy and in memory of the huge death toll taken by the war, in 1945 Ukraine and Belarus were given the status of equal UN members, along with the U.S.S.R., the United States, Great Britain and other countries of the anti-Hitler coalition.
Representatives of all Soviet nationalities fought shoulder to shoulder in the ranks of the Red Army. Besides, ethnic military formations were established in the Red Army in the years of the war. The first ethnic formation in the years of the Great Patriotic War was the 201st Latvian Rifl e Division established August 3, 1941. Overall, during World War II, the Red Army had 66 ethnic military formations, 37 of which took part in frontline battles.
Hundreds of patriots from Spain, Italy, Hungary, Germany, Bulgaria and other countries fought Nazism in the ranks of the Red Army. The 88th Rifle Brigade composing Soviet residents of Chinese and Korean origin was formed in the Far East.