Waiting For The Moment

Shortly after the 1989 collapse of the former USSR, a Russian professor gave a talk to some folks in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

He was asked how it happened so fast, nobody was expecting it. We were taught that the Soviet Union was indomitable, this was the premise of the Cold War policy of “containment.”

He replied “We were all radishes. We knew something was really wrong, but we dared not speak. When people started to speak openly in the streets, others joined them. We were all waiting for the moment, waiting for the time when it was safe to speak. Then, the avalanche.”

N.b. “Radish” was a Soviet idiom – red on the outside, not on the inside. Support for communism was only skin deep; as he said, “we dared not speak.”


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