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Ceļojoša izstāde par karā izpostītajām Latvijas pilsētām

Photos: Exhibit shows 'war fractures' in Latvian cityscape

In Rīga, a traveling exhibition "1944 – The War-Caused Fractures in Latvian Urban Landscape" is on display at the Freedom Monument. It tells the story of cities ravaged by World War II.

Rēzekne, Gulbene, Jelgava, Bauska, Valmiera and Rīga. Photographs show what changes and devastation the hostilities caused 80 years ago. What cities looked like until World War II, what they looked like a moment after the war, and what they are like these days.

Gulbene was bombed by aviation, Jelgava and Valmiera were crushed in battles. Rīga and Bauska suffered as German troops retreated devastating important infrastructure facilities.

Latvian National Defense Academy researcher Valdis Kuzmins noted that not only cities, but also people's lifestyle and society in general have changed since the war: "We don't see the small shops on the streets of Rēzekne anymore, but we see one long street. In this way, we want to show that this is a significant change, and we need to do everything every day so that such devastation does not return to our cities. (...) And what lessons we can draw from this in the context of what is happening in Ukraine right now. Exactly the same military conflict."

The exhibition was developed with the support of the State Research Program, emphasizing the exploration of Latvia's 20th-21st century history.

The exhibition will be in Rīga for two weeks, then it will travel from city to city.

You can read more about the history of the destruction of these cities in this extensive piece.

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