GERMANY: The Seductions of Plumbing

"The Soviet Union was never like this." Soviet Army wives were unanimous in their verdict when they viewed the conveniences of ordinary German houses. "I'm never going home unless there is water from the wall and light from the ceiling of my dacha," exclaimed one.

To counteract the seductions of electricity and indoor plumbing, the Soviets sent officers and wives to school. Subject: the superiority of the Soviet way of life. Russian troops got the same course, but proved even harder to convince. Large numbers deserted when faced with going back to Russia.

Last week the Kremlin decided that lectures were not...

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