When I met RAISA GORBACHEV in 1987, the cold war still divided our countries, but it did not prevent us from becoming good friends. It was tough at first. We came from different cultures. Raisa passionately believed in communism and was not afraid to defend it.

But while our husbands were trying to resolve serious differences, Raisa and I discovered we were much alike. We talked about our children, how difficult it could be to live a public life, and of course we talked about our husbands. We both just happened to be crazy about the men we married. We also...

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