Russia: The Loved One

Moscow's main attraction for the Communist faithful is the Lenin Tomb in Red Square. Every day, thousands of visitors walk silently past the glass and granite crypt, stare reverently at the dimly lit, waxy-looking corpse guarded by rigid soldiers, then file back into the sunlight. Last week Soviet officials announced that the mausoleum would be closed for the next two months. "Normal repairs," was the explanation. But on what—or whom?

To be sure, the tomb needs refurbishing after years of heavy traffic. But recent visitors have noted that Vladimir Ilyich himself has not been looking his best. "He has his...

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