The myth of the Cossacks was born on the battlefields. As the mercenaries of the Czars, these fearsome warriors formed the elite of Imperial troops, until they were halted by the Communist regime. The Alexander III Academy was created in 1994 to revive the Cossack tradition. Trained according to the strict discipline of their elders, the 290 cadets are the repositories and remaining hopes of the « Great Russia » of the past.