World: I COULD NO LONGER BREATHE

Like any man beginning a new life, Author Anatoly Kuznetsov last week sought to explain why he ended the old one. Denouncing his earlier published works as hopelessly corrupted by the Soviet system, he even took a new name: A. Anatol. TIME here presents, in documents made available to its editors, Kuznetsov's explanation of why he fled to the West and three letters that he sent to the Soviet Union after his defection.

Kuznetsov's Explanation

You will say it's hard to understand.

Why should a writer whose books have sold millions of copies, and who is extremely popular and well-off in his own country,...

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