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The invasion of Ukraine now unfolding is not the first time Russian forces have swept across large tracts of Ukrainian territory in a quest to grab some, if not all, of that country. The blood of Soviet soldiers was shed on the same ground during some of the most ferocious battles of World War 2.

Just 160km from Ukraine’s eastern border is the Russian town of Kursk — the site of the largest tank battle in history, which took place in July 1943. The Red Army ground down the Nazi invaders and then threw them back towards Ukraine in a decisive counterattack, marking the end of Hitler’s major offensives on the Eastern Front...

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