CCCP: History and Meaning of the Red Flag


The national flag of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics  – the official symbol of the USSR (along with the State Emblem and the State Anthem) was “a symbol of the state sovereignty of the USSR and the inviolable alliance of workers and peasants in the struggle to build a Communist Society”. The red colour of the flag is a symbol of the heroic struggle (and blood) of the Soviet people as led by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) in the project of building Socialism and Communism. The hammer and sickle refers to an unshakable alliance between the working class and the collective farm peasantry. The red five-pointed star on the flag of the USSR is the symbol of the ultimate triumph of the ideas of Communism throughout the five continents of the globe. The fore-runners to this flag of are as follows:
Prior to 1918
Flag of RSFSR 1918-1937
Flag of RSFSR 1918-1937 (Variant)
Flag of the USSR – 1923

The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) was oficially founded in December, 1922 – as the Russian Civil War came to an end – and the Soviet State consolidated its power experimented with a number of designs . Prior to, and after this date, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (RSFSR) experimented with a number of designs for a Soviet State Flag. In 1924 the idea of a definitive flag was formulated – with the finished design revealed in 1936 and co-opted into service in 1937. The flag itself embodies the advanced spirit of Socialism and Communism, and was often carried into battle at the head of Red Army formations during the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945). Today, it is still flown by the modern Russian Military as a ‘battle banner’ signifying victory during WWII. It is an honour to carry the Red Flag which must be protected at all times, and kept out of the hands of fascists. In 1980, the USSR developed a variant of the 1937 flag – with one side being fully red (with no star or hammer and sickle), whilst the other side was red and retained the star and hammer and sickle. This version existed beside any and all variants and was not a replacement.


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