Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: 25 Years Later – Katya’s Memories of St. Petersburg, August 1991

Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: 25 Years Later – Katya’s Memories of St. Petersburg, August 1991

It’s been 25 years since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. We’re marking the anniversary (and the 30th anniversary of MIR) with eyewitness accounts from MIR colleagues and contacts. Katya Boyarskaya, Director of our affiliate office in St. Petersburg, was living there during the time of the 1991 August Coup. Here’s her story. Read More


Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: 25 Years Later – Doug’s Memories of August 1991

Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: 25 Years Later – Doug’s Memories of August 1991

It's been 25 years since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. We're marking the anniversary (and the 30th anniversary of MIR) with eyewitness accounts from MIR colleagues and contacts. In this installment, Doug shares his memories of the fateful days of the August coup in 1991, and his travels from Seattle to Moscow to Kamchatka in the Russian Far East. Read More


Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: The August Coup, 1991

Witnessing the Fall of the USSR: The August Coup, 1991

It's been 25 years since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. We're marking the anniversary (and the 30th anniversary of MIR) with eyewitness accounts from MIR colleagues and contacts. Our first installment is from Annie Lucas, then tour manager and now MIR’s vice president. She was leading one of her first few MIR tours to Russia. In her early 20s, she had done this several times before, but it was still new to her. And on this trip, her own father (Bud Lucas, who kindly let us use his photos) had signed up to be one of the participants, making it even more important to her that the trip go smoothly. As Annie and her group of travelers packed for the coach ride into Russia, they heard the news on Finnish TV: Mikhail Gorbachev, leader of the Soviet Union, was said to be ill and confined to his dacha in the Crimea. A State of Emergency had been declared and an Emergency Committee formed to take the reins of government while he was recovering. That was all anybody knew. Read More