Samizdat Update (48.24)

<<No 48 : 14 March 1978>>

L. Kopelev: ‘In Memory of Alexander Galich’ (February 1978, 12 pp) —

Alexander Galich, 1918-1977


R. Lert: ‘Full Circle…’ (February 1978, 13 pp) —

An essay written in April 1977 (it says that the crushing of dissenters is reviving the patterns of demagoguery of the 1930s and 1940s, CCE 46), supplemented by a postscript in which the author observes: the more the authorities drag out the Orlov-Ginzburg-Shcharansky case, the more the tendentiousness, premeditation and unobjective nature of the charges become apparent. The author suggests that the USSR and USA ‘exchange’ defence lawyers:

“Why is it possible to exchange political prisoners but not defence lawyers? Perhaps this would further the interests of detente and humanism more than the sessions of any commissions or sub-commissions.”


A. Sakharov: ‘Nuclear Energy and Western Freedom’ (11 October 1977, 5 pp) —

Against anti-nuclear attitudes widespread in the West: nuclear energy threatens the environment far less than traditional energy; its development is a guarantee of the West’s greater independence from sources of chemical fuel that they cannot fully control.


T. Khodorovich and V. Nekipelov: ‘Oprichnina’-77 in the Prisons and Camps’ (October 1977, 8 pp) —

This, the third in the series of ‘Oprichnina-77’ articles [named after Ivan the Terrible’s bodyguard], see CCEs 45 and 46, is on Mordovian camp 1 (special-regime). The article is saturated with facts and contains the authors’ deeply emotional reflections on the inhuman conditions of this prison-camp and on the suffocating atmosphere, one of the consequences of which are the conflicts which flare up from time to time between political prisoners (CCE 47). The authors cite an old article by V. Moroz on the psychology of the prisoner.


V. Nekipelov: ‘Oprichnina-77 Continues’ (Fourth issue) — ‘The KGB’s “Moral Feat” for Christmas’ (30 December 1977, 2 pp). A response to the arrest of Kirill Podrabinek.


V. Nekipelov and T. Osipova: ‘Oprichnina-78 — Political reprisals using criminal means’ (February 1978, 5 pp) — A continuation of the same series. The article’s material is the reprisals against Serebrov, G. Goldstein, K. Podrabinek, V. Smogitel and Sh. Arutyunyan, the 15-day arrests, beatings-up and house-arrests.


V. Nekipelov: “To Find a Man” (4 pp) —

An article about the fate of a driver from Veshenka station, Ivan Fyodorovich Radikov (b. 1939).

After sending letters to M. A. Sholokhov and the Communist Party Central Committee in 1973 he was charged under Article 190-1 of the RSFSR Criminal Code and arrested. In April 1974 the Serbsky Institute ruled him not responsible. The article ends with an appeal to trace I. F. Radikov.

A letter to Sholokhov with a similar appeal is appended to the article.


S. Cheremukhin: ‘Visitors to the Moscow Museums’ (January 1978, 2 pp) —

People from near and further-away districts around Moscow make trips there to buy provisions. An increasingly common format for such trips is ‘excursions to the revolutionary museums’. As a result everyone is happy — the museums, the local Party committees and the ‘excursionists’.

G. Belyakov: ‘Ivanov’s Swamp’ (1965, 74 pp) —

In 1965 Georgy Belyakov (b. 1935), then a fifth-year student of the Moscow Literary Institute, presented the story ‘Ivanov’s Swamp’ as a diploma work. The story was approved by the editors of the journals Novy Mir and Yunost (Youth) but not published in view of the acute nature of the problems raised and their presentation.

In 1966 Belyakov submitted his resignation from the Party, after which he was arrested and, under Article 70 of the RSFSR Criminal Code, given 5 years in a labour camp. Subsequently the RSFSR Supreme Court reclassified the charge under Article 190-1 and reduced the term to 3 years.

The story ‘Ivanov’s Swamp’ describes in an emotional and talented way a contemporary Russian village castrated by the collective farm system.


“The Forcible Resettlement of Tadzhik Mountain-Folk” (February 1976, 3 pp) —

An article by an anonymous author about events of the sixties. In an effort to make up the lack of labour on the cotton fields, the authorities resettled several tens of thousands of mountain-folk, among them a small nation, the Yagnobtsy, on the plains. The police took part in the resettlement. The Settlements of the Yagnobtsy, which bore the features of their ancient, distinctive culture, were destroyed. In the unfamiliar conditions of the plains an enormous mortality rate developed, especially amongst children and old people. ‘Many Yagnobtsy continue to regard the mountains as their homeland and dream of returning there…’


37 magazine, Nos 7-12 —

The contents of Nos 1-6 of this Leningrad journal were described in CCE 43.

In Nos 7-8 are published verses by S. Stratonovsky and V. Aleinikov, a story by B. Ivanov, ‘Podonok’, articles by O. Sedakova on the work of Rilke and by N. Golubev, ‘On a Poem of Mandelstam’, and materials from a religious-philosophical seminar on the theme of ‘Christianity and Humanism’.

No 9 contains verses by I. Burikhin, a short novel by N. Malakhovskaya, ‘Windowless Dungeon’, verses and translations by 20 authors in memory of the translator and poetess T. G. Gnedich who died in November 1976, a paper by B. Grois ‘Dostoevsky and Kierkegaard’, a literary-critical review by G. Somov, two articles on the work of J. Brodsky, seven letters of N. Gumilyov, and materials from a religious- philosophical seminar on the theme ‘Problems of the New Christianity’.

No 10 contains verses by O. Sedakova, critical articles devoted to the work of the writers Yu. Trifonov and V. Rasputin, of film producer G, Panfilov, of Leningrad non-figurative artists, and of philosophical and theological works by T. Goricheva, B. Inozemtsev and E. Pazukhin.

No 11 publishes verses by E. Shvarts and E. Feoktistov, an article by V. Azaryan on the work of film producer Tarkovsky, travel notes of pilgrims to the Pskovo-Pecherskaya monastery, and a review article by E. Giryayev, ‘A Religio-Philosophical Seminar in Leningrad’.

In No 12 are published verses by Aronzon, a short story by B. Ulanovsky, ‘Albinosy’, an article by N. Kornilov about N. Mikhalkov’s film ‘An Unfinished Piece for Mechanical Piano’, and a confession-like account by G, Grigoryeva of her experiences on the path to religion.


Laisves Sauklis (Herald of Freedom), No 4 (October 1976) and No 5 (December 1976) —

No 4 opens with an article by Gintautas, ‘Let’s Straighten our Backs’, on the problem of national renaissance. Skirmantas’s article ‘Prisoners of Dangerous Myths’ criticizes the book published abroad by emigrant Lithuanian priest Jucevicius in which the author praises the present authorities in Lithuania for the development of Lithuanian culture. The issue also contains a statement by L. Simutis to the Presidium of the USSR Supreme Soviet of 20 August 1970 (CCEs 18 and 44).

No 5 contains an article, ‘The Felled Oak’, by K. Gintaras dedicated to the memory of the talented artist Arunas Tarabilda (1935-1969). Tarabilda did much to preserve ancient monuments. For participation in student protests he was expelled from the Artistic Institute and subjected to shadowing. He lived in great poverty and died of a stroke.


Ausra (Dawn) No 8 (48), October 1977, 49 pp. —

The article ‘What Then Should We Do?’ develops the thought that to preserve Lithuanian nationhood it is necessary to have a loving concern for national history and a real consideration for one’s native language, one must preserve and strengthen one’s faith and strive for moral improvement. The note ‘Freedom — Only for the State’ examines several articles of the new Constitution.

Under the general title “When the Sweetbriar Blooms” there is a selection of poems, three of which are by Antanas Cinge, a political prisoner who worked on gold prospecting in Bodaibo. In the preface it says of the other poems that their authors have not been found, but that these songs are close and memorable to many Lithuanians who heard and sang them in the forests, in the camps, in the taiga’. In this number are also published the record of the search at Petkus’s flat on 23 August 1977, documents of the Lithuanian Helsinki group and the ‘Resolution of the Chief Committee of the National Movements of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania’ (for a short summary see CCE 47).

No. 9 (49), January 1978, 50 pp. —

The article ‘What sort of pastors does Lithuania need?’ signed by ‘A Group of Lithuanian Priests and Believers’, gives a short history of the persecution of the Catholic Church in Lithuania over the past 38 years. V. Karalius’s article ‘From the History of the Lithuanian Youth Movement’ describes the groups of historians and investigators of local lore who are constantly persecuted by the authorities. In his article

‘A Disgraced Science’ R. Galvidis demonstrates that it is hard for talented and honest Lithuanian scholars in the humanities to gain acknowledgement. In an open letter from A. Zuvintas to Tomas Venclova, ‘Lithuanians and Jews’, the author expresses his opinion on the question as to why in Lithuania, where there had never been oppression of the followers of other religions, with the arrival of the Germans bestial beatings-up of Jews took place (more than half the members of the Lithuanian Communist Party were Jews, and therefore hatred towards the communist oppressors was manifested in this terrible way during the years of the German occupation). In the journal are also described the disturbances in Vilnius and the case of B. Gajauskas (see CCE 47 and the present issue).

Additions and Corrections (48.25)

N. N. Lepekhin (CCE 47, ‘The Helsinki Groups Under Investigation; ‘The Ginzburg Case’) was not a co-defendant of V. Pavlenkov; he has never been on trial. Pavlenkov’s co-defendant was V. I. Zhiltsov (ibid.).

The information bulletin The Case of Alexander Ginzburg and Yury Orlov (No 2), is not fully dealt with in CCE 47 (‘Samizdat News’).

It also contains documents of the Relief Fund for political prisoners for June-August 1977, evidence from the friends of Orlov given to the press or sent to his Western defence lawyer, documents on the investigation in connection with Ginzburg and Orlov’s cases, and documents about political prisoners (the majority of these documents are summarized in CCEs 45-46). The section ‘More About Petrov- Agatov’ reproduces a manuscript of his, full of effusive compliments to Ginzburg.


CCE 47 said that Malva Landa was summoned to Chita for interrogation in connection with Orlov’s case (‘The Helsinki Groups Under Investigation’, ‘The Orlov Case’). In actual fact it is unknown in connection with which case she was summoned: since Landa refused from the start to answer questions, the investigator did not tell her which case she had been summoned on.


The signatures of Birute Pasiliene and Alfonsas Pasilis appeared under the letter to Brezhnev and Carter (CCE 47, ‘The Right to Leave’) through a misunderstanding.