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Old 10-05-2011, 12:25 PM   #1
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Entitlement to Soviet Wartime Medals

I wonder if someone could help with the following facts:-

A citizen born in Czarist Russia in 1915 is forced by persecution / discrimination with his family to move to Europe in 1930's. With the rise of fascism he joins the Foreign Legion with a view to joining the Allies in the war against Nazism. He joins the British Army in 1943 and serves for 3 years and is awarded 3 British Medals (French/Germany Star; 1939/45 Star and War Medal). Serves in a prestigious regiment with undoubted bravery. Marries a British woman - has a son of joint UK/Russian nationality. Goes back to Russia in 1956 and dies in the Ukraine in 1977. His widow returns to the UK but son remains in the Ukraine. Never renounces Russian citizenship. Feted when he returns to the USSR in 1956.

Is there any precedent for such a person to be awarded (even posthumously) Soviet Wartime medals and, if so, which ones and who does one contact if this is possible?

Many thanks in anticipation.

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Old 10-05-2011, 12:33 PM   #2
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Re: Entitlement to Soviet Wartime Medals

Highly unlikely. If this person was entitled to VOG type awards wouldn't he have got the 20th anniversary medal in the Soviet Union in 65? Just being a Russian serviceman in an allied force does not entitle them to Soviet awards. Now if they had been on the Arctic Convoys that would have been a different thing.... Is there a Bravery award or Mention in Dispatches to note any bravery? A 1960's-70's picture of a Russian in the Soviet Union wearing the British WW2 awards would be a good one to see!
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:51 PM   #3
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Re: Entitlement to Soviet Wartime Medals

I agree. Even a very loose interpretation of who would qualify for Soviet military awards, they almost all require a written statement of the "feats" that warrant the award in the first place. It would be nearly impossible to imagine that someone from the Red Army would be able to bear witness to any acts of bravery in support and furthering of the Soviet cause during the war.

I'm sure he deserved the awards he received from the Brits, but without someone to stand up for him in the USSR, additional awards would seem highly improbable. Besides, unless I'm mistaken, with the exception of only a small number of renown Warsaw Pact individuals and even fewer Westerners, with the exception of the Arctic Convoy participants mentioned above, were ever given Soviet military awards.

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