Ambassador calls ALSIB air route brightest instance of Russian-US cooperation
"The Alaska-Siberian Air Road offers a brightest instance of Russian-American cooperation in struggle with a common enemy," he wrote in a welcoming message to participants in an international research conference ‘Lend Lease. Route of Collaboration Against Common Enemy. The 75th Anniversary of the Alaska-Siberian Air Road’ that is held in the East-Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk on November 10-11.
"We do not have the right to forget the horrors of World War II and the sacrifices brought to the altar of Victory," Antonov went on. "The feat the Russian and American pilots achieved together in rebuffing the Nazi barbarianism will always remain a symbol of unity of the two peoples. The memories of it prompt us to safeguard and multiply the tradition of friendship and mutual understanding for the sake of averting new global conflicts."
"Friendship between nations is a great force and we should care for it," Antonov wrote. "Heroism and courage of U.S. pilots will always remain on the glorious records of combat cooperation between our two countries. We are glad that, thanks to precious support from our fellow-countrymen, the Americans, too, honor the Russian and American pilots who cruised ALSIB."
He expressed the hope that the memory of friendship and unity quenched in harsh trials would facilitate the normalization of relations between Russia and the U.S.
Joint Russian-American festivities devoted to ALSIB’s 75th anniversary were held in spring 2017. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and the then Ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Kislyak laid flowers at a monument to ALSIB heroes in Fairbanks, Alaska.
The air route, by which the U.S. supplied warplanes to the Soviet Union during World War II started in Fairbansk and ended in Krasnoyarsk. It was on November 11, 1942, that the first planes consigned from the U.S. to Russia in the format of Lend Lease program landed there.