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decay of Marxism in Russia and how to accelerate that process. That is why. There is no crime more dangerous in the USSR than writing anti-Communist books, but I wrote them because I was anxious for the future of my country and the whole world, and because of that I had been arrested and my apartment searched.
To understand this disenchantment, you should consider for a moment my own personal experiences. For generations, my family, like many other Russians, Ukrainians or Byelorussians and so on, had been brutally repressed by our Communist government. My uncles were killed by the Bolsheviks. My mother was sent to Siberia to do penal servitude in the gold mines for six years and ten months, from the time she was 16, I stress, she was only a girl, from the time she was 16 until she was 23. Her only crime being that her father was a farmer who had opposed collectivization. My father, in turn, was luckier. He was expelled from the military for making a joke about Stalin. He could have been shot, but he survived.
Right now it is understandable why I was against Marxist dictatorship. But let us return to my arrest. After that arrest, to my surprise, I was released within a matter of hours. The reason for the release was not the result of bail reform or some other nicety of constitutional law. Rather, it was for two sinister and hypocritical reasons.
The KGB hoped that I would immediately contact my fellow conspirators, trying to warn them or trying to get help from them, thereby exposing them one by one so the KGB could get us all. As to me, it was their mistake. I didn't expose my friends, and I used their miscalculation.
But that wasn't all. The bureaucratic machine of Soviet jurisprudence handed me another ace, everybody has to be expelled from the party first, and I was still a member of the CPSU, and then turned over to the investigators. This was their second mistake.
I knew that I had at least a day or two before my second arrest, after I was called into the party committee meeting to be expelled. Of course, the second and final arrest could take place at any moment, unexpectedly and without any formalities, but instinct told me that I still had some time. It was a hard time.
In order to escape an encirclement, you have to at least study it. My first foray outside on the day after my first arrest convinced me that it would be impossible to escape even in the daytime. I won't mention the nighttime. I noticed and recognized only two cars following me around town on the first day, and then there were five of them on the third day.
Then, as a real professor, I decided to teach them a few lessons in Pavlovian conditioning. Practice revealed that a KGB man is a two-legged creature who walks erect and-like all mammals—can be trained. I gave them the slip on three different occasions, but allowed them to find me again. Once they were confident that I didn't intend to leave their trap, they relaxed.
The fourth time, I kept on going. In that manner, I would be saving more than just myself. I left my shadows on April 1, 1984, and I won nothing less than my life. It was very hard, but at the time it turned out to be the grandest April fool's joke of my life, because the price of it was the biggest one, it was my own life.
From that day, concealing my whereabouts, I went to the Crimea. I think you know where it is. It is on the Black Sea. There I obtained mountain climbing equipment. Every day, I shopped for my supplies—a backpack, sleeping bag, slicker, sneakers, flask, compass, knife, food concentrates, rope, binoculars, and so on. I did a lot of training in the local mountains.
Finally, after two weeks, I left for the Caucasus mountain range and from there I started my hike to the West. Because of the presence of the KGB training camp and fighting facilities around Batumi City, I had to go east instead of south. I had to go east along the Caucasian range for ten days, and then south to the border for nine days as well.
I cannot even recall exactly how many times I risked my life, it would be too hard to count. It is enough to say that I crossed two mountain ranges and twice swam across icy mountain rivers at night in order to be invisible. Eighteen days out of 19, it was either raining or snowing.
On May 11, 1984, I reached the Turkish border. My biggest shock upon arriving at the border was not the awesome obstacles I faced-mine fields, guard towers, electrified fences. Rather, I was shocked and angry to finally realize that the top of the fences were angled in, back toward the Soviet Union and not out toward the socalled "hostile" West.
It clearly crystallized in my mind that this entire network of fences and guards was not intended to keep invaders out, but rather to keep the Soviet citizens in. We were prisoners in our own society. It was awful to notice it, to see it.
From my hiding place at the border, I was barely able to see three border patrol guards. I assumed that they couldn't see me since the standard military issue binoculars in the Soviet Union is only five-power, and my binoculars were ten-power field glasses.
The problem is who will see another person first. Due to the grace of God, my crossing the three fences was almost uneventual. I am certain I set off some type of alarms, however, since a Soviet helicopter was launched and attacked me while I was on Turkish soil.
I was able to survive the attacks once again due to my previous military training where I had been taught that helicopter crews have a far more difficult time spotting a stationary target than they do one that is moving. Thus, I merely stayed behind clumps of bushes whenever the helicopter made a pass overhead.
I later went to a Turkish control point and turned myself over to the authorities. I had taken 19 days to hike out during which time I had lost 20 kilos of weight, approximately 44 pounds.
I stayed in Turkey for about three weeks. Eventually my passage to Munich was arranged. While there, I had an opportunity to work part-time as a broadcaster for Radio Liberty. I especially wanted to do this so that my family could hear my voice and know I was alive. I remained there for eight months until I obtained a visa to New York.
When I arrived in the United States on January 29, 1985, I was put into contact with the International Rescue Committee, which arranged temporary housing in Harlem and a modest amount of spending money for a few months. I also arranged through them a few low-paying jobs, photographer assistant, for instance, though none that were related to my previous experience.
In May of 1985, I was put into contact with the Jamestown Foundation, which assisted me in moving to Washington and finding temporary work house-setting in the Maryland suburbs. These efforts gave me an opportunity to work on a book describing my defection which I am pleased to announce has been accepted by Alfred Knoph Publishing Company for eventual release in the beginning of 1988. It is entitled “In The KGB Gunsights.'
Through the assistance of relatives of Christian Sizemore, the President of Alderson-Broaddus College in Philippi, West Virginia, for the last six months I have been able to work on a second book, which attempts to reduplicate the manuscript I was working on in Odessa in 1984 when the KGB seized it.
In addition, I was able on my own to obtain employment as a Russian language and culture instructor for the Foreign Service Institute. Unfortunately, this is merely on a contractual basis which does not provide any medical or retirement benefit.
Needless to say, I am very grateful to the many Americans who have helped me, and several of them are here in this room. Thank you, my friends. I am also grateful to the country that has accepted me as a refugee. If this country didn't exist, I would have been killed, and this is very important to have such a country as a supporter. I particularly appreciate the actions of the Jamestown Foundation, the International Rescue Committee, and AldersonBroaddus College.
However, what does surprise me, and what I believe must also concern this subcommittee, is the absence of a clearly designated and adequately funded system for the resettlement of defectors from the Communist world. My comparatively successful adaptation in the United States was conditioned by a chain of fortunate circumstances, but in order to solve the problem of defectors, we cannot rely upon fortunate circumstances. We have to have a system of resettlement.
Moreover, it seems to me that I and many of my friends who fled Communism would be of more useful service to this country if we were given the opportunity to tell the people and to the government what we know about how the Communist world really works.
Therefore, it appears to me that as long as this is true and as long as the Communist Bloc countries continue to conceal their inner-workings from the West on the whole, the defector is an important source for understanding our common opponent, by that I mean the Marxist dictatorship, and learning what his peculiarities
I would hope that this subcommittee develops an appropriate and properly funded mechanism that better untilizes the defector resource. At the same time, I hope that the Congress will advance a system that also addresses the unique problems the defector faces in resettling here in the United States.
The question of assistance to Communist Bloc defectors remains grave and must be addressed. In my view, the following must be done in order to resolve the problem:
One, creation, inside the appropriate government agency, of a small department dedicated to working with defectors.
Two, a provision for the appropriation of sufficient funds in the department's budget to cover housing expenses for a fixed period of time, language instruction and career placement of the defector.
Three, a system of low interest loans for education and retraining would be appropriate. In return for this assistance, the defector would be required to do work for the government in either translating or analysis. He could be paid to write about his experiences for the government while he is also developing new skills, et cetera, in this country. The government will be compensated by the benefit of his knowledge. This was a reciprocal exchange, 50/50, so to speak.
Four, one staff member of the department should be a former defector who is thoroughly familiar with adjustment problems and the defector's language. Don't think, please, that I reserve this place for myself. I don't mean by that that I have to work in that place, but such a department has to have a person with similar experience in his or her background, because from the beginning they talk with defectors, the Jamestown Foundation, or other organizations, in unknown languages. As to me I didn't know English at all.
Five, a regulation, granting early citizenship to defectors in those cases where U.S. citizenship is a requirement for employment considerations. Without citizenship, you can count on only low paid jobs.
Six, the last one. One objective of the newly-created department should be the dissemination of information about defectors' activities both inside and outside of the United States.
As a result, our mutual efforts will help defend freedom in the United States, in the Communist Bloc countries and in the world on the whole.
Thank you for your attention.
We appreciate both of our witnesses' very educational testimony this morning, which has also been uplifting, and I think very inspirational for all who have heard it. We, in America, as we celebrate the 200th birthday of our Constitution, even with celebrations going on, don't stop long enough to think about what freedom really means.
I think that when Leo Cherne said this morning that the presence of people in our country who have lived under totalitarian systems is a splendid way to remind us what freedom means has been exemplified by the testimony of both of you this morning. We thank you for that.
I have a number of questions. Our time is running short. We thought that we would have two other witnesses this morning, and they are both very important witnesses. We are not going to be able to do that by the time we complete questions with this panel.
We will, of course, invite both of those who had been put on possible alert that we will be having another hearing on the 21st of October on this subject, so this is not a closed book and we would invite them to come back. We particularly wanted to hear about Afghanistan from the lady who spends so much of her time working in that area, and we hope that she will be patient with us and come back, because we will give her a chance at that time to testify.
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If necessary, we will put another day on of hearings, because I think that we definitely need to hear about that, as well as our other witness who has, I think, some very interesting testimony about utilization of defectors and how they can be extremely productive for particular endeavors.
Doctor, I would like to ask just one or two questions, based on your testimony, that occurred to me while you were testifying. Is it a standard practice in the Soviet Union to expel someone from the Communist Party before they are actually prosecuted?
Dr. Ushakov. Right, this is a standard practice, because no Communist can be a criminal, so to speak, and before they will put you in the concentration camp, they have to expel you from the party, and this is what happened to me.
Senator Nunn. So that they can say that Communists are never criminals?
Dr. USHAKOV. Yes. This is a special invention of the CPSU to avoid the statistics for themselves.
Senator Nunn. Senator Cohen, we ought to consider that for the Democratic and Republican Parties.
Senator COHEN. I have been expelled on several occasions. [Laughter.]
Senator Nunn. You mentioned the books and magazine articles. You said that you had written several books and several magazine articles. I am curious as to whether you were able to disseminate those before you were arrested, or whether all of them were confiscated.
Dr. USHAKOV. This is why I was arrested.
Senator Nunn. Had you disseminated them? Had people had a chance to get copies?
Dr. USHAKOV. Just only among my friends, but among my friends was an acquaintance of mine who was the informer to the KGB, and this is how it took place.
Senator Nunn. This was a secret or clandestine press that you were printing these on?
Dr. Ushakov. Right.
Senator Nunn. You were able to get some of them out into society, though, or do you think that the KGB seized all of them?
Dr. USHAKOV. Yes, you are right.
Ms. Costa. Senator, a clandestine press in the Soviet Union is a typewriter that takes a maximum of six carbon copies. There is nothing else available. There are no Xerox machines. There are no presses. They are government-owned.
Senator Nunn. I am told that the personal computers that exist with printers are kept under lock and key. Is that correct?
Ms. Costa. Xerox machines are kept under lock and key. Senator Nunn. Xerox machines are kept under lock and key? Ms. Costa. Yes. As for the typewriters, font samples are taken when you buy them and kept for identification purposes.
Dr. USHAKOV. Xerox machines are not available to make a single copy.
Senator Nunn. That is even for members of the Communist Party?
Dr. USHAKOV. Even the members of the Communist Party. Senator COHEN. Do you have any need for shredders? (Laughter.)