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Great Patriotic War

The term Great Patriotic War is used in Russia and other states of the former Soviet Union to describe the period of the Second World War following the commencement of Operation Barbarossa (the Invasion of the Soviet Union) on June 22, 1941. The main reason for using this propaganda term was to downplay the fact that, in the preceeding period of World War II, the Soviet Union sided with the Axis, signing the Nazi-Soviet pact and invading Poland and Finland and annexing Baltic countries.

See also: World War II