Tanks to Make Victory Day Return

Tanks and missiles will rumble across Red Square during the May 9 Victory Day parade for the first time in 18 years, as Russia asserts its military might at the close of Vladimir Putin's presidency.

The Soviet-style display will feature S-300 surface-to-air missiles on the ground and Su-27 and MiG-29 fighter jets in the air, General Yury Solovyov said in comments posted Tuesday on the Defense Ministry's web site.

A total of 32 fighter planes will take part in the event, which marks the Allies' victory over Nazi Germany in World War II, the statement saidas well as tanks, intercontinental ballistic missiles and helicopters in the first display of weapons on Red Square since 1991.

Rights activists blasted the move.

"It is an artificial attempt to resurrect the Soviet myth that if they are scared of us, they respect us," said Arseny Roginsky, of human rights watchdog Memorial, Interfax reported.

Bloomberg, MT