The End of Soviet Afghanistan

By the mid-1980′s, the Soviets were struggling in Afghanistan.  Troops were no longer deployed outside of urban areas, which left the Afghan countryside to the control of the West- and foreign-funded militants.  These militants would end up fighting each other after the Soviets eventually withdrew from Afghanistan, they managed to band together and fight the […]


26 April 1986- The Number 4 reactor in the Chernobyl power plant in Ukraine explodes after a power surge, releasing tons (figuratively, not literally) of radiative dust and radiation into the air.  38 people were killed as a result of the explosion, and an estimated 100,000 more were killed or suffered sever health degeneration in […]

Soviet Imperialism

Christmas Day, 1979.  As per the request of the acting government (the prior Afghan president had been assassinated at this point and replaced by a Soviet-friendly one named Babrak Karmal), the Soviet Army crosses the border into Afghanistan (Source Essay: “The Invasion of Afghanistan” by James von Geldern). In a speech to the Russian people […]

The Strugatsky Brothers

The Strugatsky Brothers were an author duo which rose to fame during the 1960′s as science fiction writers.  Their books initially were lauding the way of Soviet thought, they later very quietly spoke of the downfalls of Soviet society.  For example, Noon: 22nd Century, published in 1962, praised the science that was commonly attributed to […]

Insane in the Ukraine

Ukrainian national identity struggled to gain support during the early 20th century while Ukraine was controlled by both Polish and Soviet state powers. When Poland was divided between the USSR and Nazi Germany, the underlying identity of those who considered themselves Ukrainians was split once again. The West began to side with the fascist ideas […]

The Great Russian Melting

“The Thaw,” written by Il’ia Ehrenburg in 1954, is a novel which follows the lives of three different types of Soviet men, including the stark contrast of the life of an industrial manager and an artist.  What makes “The Thaw” so special is that Ehrenburg intentionally breaks from the Stalinist belief that communism was the […]

I Don’t Like You, but I Like What You Do

For a long time, the Russians viewed Germans and the Slavic minorities in their country as an issue, especially during World War II.  However, this enmity towards the Germans always existed, Stalin just used the war as an excuse to “cleanse” Russia of the perceived filth, claiming that the Germans had infiltrated Russia with spies.  […]

It’s a ChurchPoolChurch!

The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour was built over the span of 40 years, and opened in the 19th century.  This church is the archetype of what all churches hope to be: it was the largest Orthodox Church ever built, and was a prime example of opulence.  The inner sanctum was circumscribed by two galleries, […]

G-d Bless You!

This was just one of many hundreds of images that were published during the anti-religious push that occurred while the Bolsheviks were attempting to rebuild Russian society. The Bolsheviks knew that if their revolution was to be successful, society had to unify into one, cohesive whole.  Therefore, the Party created organizations such as the Komsomol […]

Serf’s Up!

The serfs were Russia’s primary agricultural laborers up to the mid-19th century.  However, Russia’s defeat in the Crimean War brought to light the need for societal reform, and the issue of serfs was a hotbed of political debate.  The reformists wanted serfs to be liberated (although to what extent was also debated at length), while […]