Foreign News: Those Moscow Mules

With the coming of spring, an alarming case of human nature was busting out all over the Soviet paradise.

Through the milling crowds in front of Moscow's department stores, furtive figures accosted shoppers to hawk wares hidden in briefcases, paper bags and coat pockets. After striking a bargain, the hawkers disappeared into the throng before agents from the "Department for Struggle Against Swindle and Speculation" could lay on the heavy hand of the law. The trade, according to Krokodil, Russia's official humor magazine, which sees nothing funny in the situation: a brisk black market in privately and illegally made woolen jerseys, caps,...

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