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“In early 1974, the fate of the well-known Russian dissident, Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn, was a behind-the-scenes concern to the Western delegations at the CSCE. Deputy Foreign Minister Anatoli Kovalev, the head of the Soviet delegation reportedly played an important role in the resolution of the situation then facing us at that time. This situation lasted until Solzhenitsyn was expelled to the West instead of being incarcerated in the U.S.S.R. According to Kovalev’s own account many years later, he was instrumental in the Kremlin’s decision in the case. Kovalev reportedly argued then that a decision to jail Solzhenitsyn would mark the end of the Helsinki process.” [FULL TEXT]

“At an informal reception given by my boss, the American minister, in the spring of 1948 in Ottawa, I met the Canadian undersecretary for external affairs, Lester Pearson. To my surprise and pleasure he went out of his way to chat with that lowest form of diplomatic life, a third secretary and vice consul (my rank at the time). His affability and kindness naturally endeared him to me and I followed his career with more than professional interest.” [FULL TEXT]

“The sea stretches out, luminous and blue, to the northern horizon. I lean, like a Cuban, against the rough, crumbling seawall of the Malecón. Decrepit apartment buildings, eaten away by years of salt air and neglect, line the curving waterfront. Soviet-style housing blocks sport balconies with flaking blue paint. The modern U.S. Interests Section building stands out like a clean-cut American cop in mirrored glasses.” [FULL TEXT]

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