Stalin's Sancho Panza

Uncouth and brutal, Nikita Khrushchev nevertheless rinsed the terror out of the Stalinist Soviet regime

When the Soviet ship Baltika throbbed into New York harbor one morning in September 1960, demonstrators on a chartered sightseeing boat waved placards: ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE BLUE; STALIN DROPPED DEAD. HOW ABOUT YOU? Nikita Khrushchev laughed and pointed. A few weeks later at the United Nations, a Philippine delegate gave a speech complaining about the Soviet occupation of Eastern Europe. Khrushchev astonished the General Assembly by taking off his brown loafer and banging it on the table as if it were a spoon on an infant's high chair, except that in this case the banging had an apocalyptic implication....

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