Since the restoration of Latvia’s independence, national security and defense have not been automatically guaranteed for hundreds of years ahead, so it is important to always be vigilant about our country, emphasized Dr.hist. Ainārs Lerhis, Chairman of the Board of the Centre for Eastern European Policy Studies, speaking at the Lāčplēsis Day torch parade in Lielvārde.
Speaking about what does November 11 mean for Latvia, A. Lerhis briefly sketched out the historical developments in the Autumn of 1919, when the armed forces hostile to the Republic of Latvia – the Volunteer Army of Western Russia (consisting of Russian monarchists and German revanchists) – were formed. On October 8, these troops under the command of Bermondt attacked Riga, initially succeeding. But on October 10, Latvian troops on the banks of the river Daugava stopped the attack. In the coming weeks, the people of Latvia were able to unite to strongly support their national army in a joint action against the enemy. This ensured success in the fight against military superiority. The Latvian army took over the initiative and on November 11 released Pārdaugava and thus the entire capital city Riga. Latvian troops continued their counterattack and expelled enemy troops from Latvian territory by the end of November.
Lerhis emphasized that these events demonstrate important historical lessons. For example, how important it is for the Latvian people, both Latvians and people of other nationalities, living in Latvia, to be united in achieving a common goal, because thus it is possible to win even being in seemingly weaker positions.
The event was attended by high number of residents of Lielvarde region. Lerhis told the audience what the tradition of celebrating November 11 has been since 1920, expressed the joy that the celebration of Lacplesis Day in Latvian towns and villages is expanding more and more with every year.
Photos: county of Lielvārde