Russia's next nuclear icebreaker will be named “Leningrad”
A cold wind of Soviet nostalgia is blowing across a Russia that uses World War II to justify its war against Ukraine.
No coincidence then that laying the keel for the next nuclear-powered icebreaker will happen simultaneously as St. Petersburg celebrates the 80th anniversary of the end of the Nazi-German siege of Leningrad, the city’s former name.
Initially supposed to be named Sakhalin, it is now officially decided that the name will be Leningrad, speaker of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko writes in Telegram.
The city of St. Petersburg was called Leningrad from 1924 to 1991.
The icebreaker is the second to change name from a geographical location in the Arctic to instead carry the name of a Soviet dictator and mass-murderer. Last fall, Vladimir Putin approved a suggestion to change the name of Kamchatka to Stalingrad. Start of construction is planned for 2025.
From before, Russia has three vessels of the kind in operation. The Arktika, Sibir and Ural are today instrumental in keeping Arctic ports and shipping lanes open to shipments. The Yakutia and Chukotka are due to be ready for operations in 2024 and 2026 respectively.
The Soviet Union’s first nuclear-powered icebreaker was named Lenin and serves today as a museum of the nuclear fleet in the central harbor of Murmansk.
100 years after his death on January 21st 1924, the co-founder of the Soviet Union lives on. Very much so in the Arctic.