World War 2 Today?
Russia never got the memo...
Approximately 70 years after World War II ended for, well, the majority of the world, it still dragged on for the formerly communist nation.
In 1951, the Soviet Union declined to sign the San Francisco Peace Treaty, which would have ended the conflict between themselves and Japan. Even to this day, Russia and Japan continue their feud over the four Southern Kurile Islands, which both countries claim as their territory. Still, there is hope for peace – just this May, Vladimir Putin met with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to negotiate the terms for an end. This urge for reconciliation comes largely from China’s growing prominence in Asia, and the desire to impede/balance that rise. Other reasons for reviving the peace talk include eastern Russia’s desperate need for modern technology and investment, and Japan’s interest in a more diverse marketplace and economy.
Interestingly (though unsurprisingly…) enough, the lack of official armistice did not stop the Russians from celebrating the end of World War II. After Germany surrendered, people flocked into the streets of Moscow and drank the city dry. When Stalin addressed the nation 22 hours later, almost no alcohol could be found anywhere! Tourists claim that, even at train stations, finding an ounce of vodka was akin to finding a brick of gold.
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