New exhibition explores the role of the Soviet Union in the Second World War

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In the lead-up to the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, a temporary exhibition about the Soviet Union’s role in the defeat of Nazi Germany has gone on display at the Australian War Memorial.

Shared Victory explores the often overlooked alliance between the Soviet Union and the West through a series of British and Soviet wartime posters calling on people to unite against their common enemy, Adolf Hitler.

It also tells the story of the Soviet war effort through a series of evocative photographs detailing the war experience of soldiers and civilians on the Eastern Front, and details the little known story of a small group of Australians briefly based in north Russia in 1942.

Exhibition curator and historian David Sutton said the Soviet Union was a powerful partner of the Western Allies, including Australia, in the Second World War.

“Between 1941 and 1945, the Soviet Union was responsible for destroying roughly 75 per cent of Hitler’s military forces and played a crucial role in the victory over Nazism. In those same years, more than 27 million Soviet citizens, mostly civilians, lost their lives.

“Despite the crucial role played by the Soviet Union in the Second World War, its story is relatively unknown by many in Australia,” Dr Sutton said.

Shared Victory is currently on display in the Captain Reg Saunders Gallery until late 2020.

For more information about the Australian War Memorial and its exhibitions visit

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