cross the border


Dear Murad! Two days ago I wrote to Amalia. They lived through terrible years in the Crimea. When we learned the details, dad could not find a place for himself. Right before our eyes, he lost a lot of weight and grew old. I saw him like this only after returning from Berlin. His article “Through the eyes of an eyewitness” about the trial of Soghomon Tehlirian made a lot of noise here. Have you shown it to your friends and what was their reaction? Write…

I already wrote to you that after university I went to get a job in one of the local Russian newspapers. In the editorial office, I came across an article “Bolshevik terror in the Crimea” by Daniil Samoylovich Pasmanik, one of the editors of the Parisian émigré newspaper Common Cause. Having no information about the situation in the Crimea, my dad and I read it in one gulp. Better not to read. It said that “the size of the Bolshevik terror in the Crimea after the departure of General Wrangel surpassed all predictions, and the Crimea was called the All-Russian cemetery. So how many were destroyed and tortured by the Reds? Giving evidence to the Lausanne court, the writer Ivan Sergeevich Shmelev said that in the Crimea, according to the information that he collected in the most thorough way, the Bolsheviks shot or killed in other ways (hung, hacked to death with sabers,

After reading these lines, dad lost his peace and specially went to Lausanne to meet with Ivan Sergeevich. Shmelev told him that he had come to the Crimea at the height of the “Red Terror” in search of his missing son and experienced a famine there that arose due to the terrible drought of 1921, the invasion of locusts and downpours of 1922. Several years of military operations were added to these truly biblical cataclysms and consequences of the policy of war communism with its unbearable requisitioning.