What Belarus celebrates on November 7?

Belarus is the last country in the former Soviet Union to celebrate October Revolution Day on November 7.

Demonstration in support of the Red Terror. Petrograd, Russia. Early September 1918.

In congratulating the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, Alyaksandr Lukashenka noted that the revolution “united the oppressed peoples, dealt a blow to the global colonial system,” brought “social justice, equality of rights and opportunities” instead of capitalism. In the new era, the Belarusian people “entered the status of a political nation, which first created a national state in its native land.”

This is not the first attempt to link the Bolshevik coup in Russia with the creation of the Belarusian state. The Belarusian People’s Republic was created not by the Russian Bolsheviks but by the Belarusians themselves in 1918, and Soviet Belarus was created contrary to the BNR and without any particular desire. There could have been no BSSR.

As a result of the October Revolution, the Communists forcibly overthrew the legitimate Provisional Government, and then dissolved the democratically elected All-Russian Constituent Assembly (in which they had only 23% of the seats), began the Civil War, which killed, according to various estimates, from 10 to 17 million people.

As part of the war, the Bolsheviks carried out a set of punitive measures, officially called the Red Terror — people were eliminated on “class grounds.”

The attitude to the Bolshevik holiday among the Belarusians was at least ambiguous. Apart from Belarus, only the unrecognized “Transnistrian Moldovan Republic” celebrated this day. In Russia, the holiday was replaced by the Day of National Unity in 2005 in honor of the expulsion of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth troops from Moscow. The day off was moved from November 7 to November 4.

Also, on November 7, Belarus celebrates Civil Aviation Day. However, Belarusian aviation is not in the holiday mood: almost all Europe has closed the sky for Belavia planes after the forced landing of Ryanair aircraft with journalist Raman Pratasevich on board.

Belavia may additionally fall under the EU sanctions along with the companies serving the delivery of migrants to Belarus, who are trying to get illegally to the EU with the support of the Belarusian authorities. Belaeronavigatsiya is already under sanctions and has already sued the Council of the European Union demanding to lift the sanctions.