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Amusing stuff from the Soviet archives

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Post 15 Jul 2014, 23:14
E. Guevara offers the present company to smoke. All except Comrade Titov refuse on the grounds that they are nonsmokers. E. Guevara lights a cigar.

A. I. Mikoyan: Smoking is a bad habit. Our scientists estimated that out of six people who died of cancer, five smoked. In our CC CPSU Presidium, for example, almost nobody smokes. Only Comrade Brezhnev smokes sometimes, but even that is more for amusement than real smoking. I have a pretty big family, around twenty people. And none of us are smokers. Four of my sons were in the army, where the conditions are very predisposed to smoking—there is even a free issue of tobacco for each soldier—and still they did not acquire this habit....

E. Guevara: With tobacco things are good. Natural conditions in Cuba are extremely favorable for the production of tobacco. We have some difficulty selling it abroad. The United States used to buy a lot of it. The capitalist bosses are used to Havana cigars, and right now they have to do without them.

A. I. Mikoyan: You know, when I was in New York en route to Cuba, I was talking with Adlai Stevenson. He complained to me that he misses Cuban cigars. I gave him some friendly advice to normalize trade relations with Cuba and thus solve the problem. (Everybody laughs)
They begin with talking about giving Molotov his CPSU membership back, then suddenly it goes into a discussion on how Khrushchev sucked:
GROMYKO: Basically thanks to him the so-called "Eurocommunism" was born.
TIKHONOV: And what he did to our economy! I myself have had to work in a Sovnarkhoz [Soviet regional economic organ].
GORBACHEV: And to the party, breaking it into industrial and agricultural party organizations!
USTINOV: We were always against sovnarkhozy. And many members of the CC Politburo, as you remember, stated such an opinion.
In connection with the fortieth anniversary of the Victory over fascism [May 1985] I would propose discussing one more question. Shouldn't we restore the name Stalingrad to Volgograd? Millions of people would support this. But this, as they say, is information for thought.
GORBACHEV: This proposal has positive and negative sides.
TIKHONOV: Recently a very good documentary film was released called "Marshall Zhukov," in which Stalin is portrayed rather fully and positively.
CHERNENKO: I watched it. This is a good film.
USTINOV: I really should see it.
The last time Hoxha and Khrushchev met in person, and it's easy to see why.
Comrade Enver: Yes, but do you know what your own ambassador has said? Instead of mentioning many cases, I will mention one that is a military matter. He has put into the question to which side the Albanian army would swear allegiance.

N. S. Khrushchev: Who has he said this to?

Comrade Enver: To our generals, at the airport, in the presence of your general. Our officers replied that the Albanian army would remain faithful to the party and the socialist camp.

N. S. Khrushchev: If our ambassador has said such a thing, then that is sheer stupidity.

Comrade Enver: But this stupidity is political.

N. S. Khrushchev: This is every kind of stupidity.

Mikoyan: Maybe you are inferring that the ambassador’s behavior is our official position?

Comrade Enver: One case of stupidity from one idiot may be forgiven, even if it is political, but when it is repeated many times it is official position.

N. S. Khrushchev: Yes, this is true.

Comrade Enver: Your ambassador has been the best friend to our party and to us on a personal level. He is not an idiot.

N. S. Khrushchev: If he has spoken so, he is an idiot.

Comrade Enver: His stupidity only came out after Bucharest. Why did he not do this for three years in a row? This is strange.


Comrade Ramiz Alia: (Reading from page 46 of the letter). You publicly accuse us of anti-Sovietism.

N. S. Khrushchev: This is our opinion. Do not get angry.

Comrade Mehmet: You attack us, and we should not get angry?

N. S. Khrushchev: You accused me over our conversation in [April] 1957. [Back] then, Comrade Enver spoke for two hours, while I kept my mouth shut. I spoke for five minutes and you interrupted me immediately, and then again and again. I said that you do not wish to listen and I could stop talking. Then you came to our Central Committee, said that what happened was not a good thing and [we] reconciled. Now you should let me speak. All four of you are interrupting me again.

We are sorry about what happened to these people. You do not believe us. I do not know Koco Tashko. I may have seen him before, but even if you showed me a picture of him, I would not recognize him.

Comrade Enver: If you would like a picture, we can bring you one.

N. S. Khrushchev: Why do you talk this way?

Comrade Enver: I apologize.

N. S. Khrushchev: You sent me the picture in which we are hugging. Maybe you burned that one. I keep mine at the Central Committee. I will keep it no matter what happens.

Comrade Enver: I keep mine in my children’s room.
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