Soviet Union: A Kremlin Entrance, and an Exit

Chernenko, frail and thinner, is back, while a top soldier is out

An awards ceremony at the Kremlin would not normally have attracted so much attention. But when it was leaked that Soviet President Konstantin Chernenko would be presenting medals to three cosmonauts, interest in the ceremony intensified, both in the Soviet bloc and in the West. Would Chernenko, who had been rumored to be seriously ill, really appear? If so, how would he look compared with his last public appearance on July 13? Sure enough, there was the Soviet leader, in a ten-minute...

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