Russian President Vladimir Putin told his armed forces they were fighting for their country at a parade of Russian firepower in Moscow while his troops stepped up their 10-week-old assault on Ukraine. Ukrainian officials said heavy fighting was underway in eastern Ukraine and warned people to take cover from expected missile strikes as Moscow marked the anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two. Four high-precision Onyx missiles fired from the Russian-controlled Crimea peninsula struck the Odesa area in southern Ukraine, the Ukrainian military said later, without giving details. Putin said Russia’s “special military operation” was a purely defensive and unavoidable measure against plans for a NATO-backed invasion of lands he said were historically Russia’s, including Crimea. “Russia preventively rebuffed the aggressor,” he said, offering no evidence for what he called open preparations to attack Crimea and Ukraine’s […]