Luba Brezhneva

Photo: C-SPAN

Some think this is the beginning of another Cold war. Or worse. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has changed the course of world events.

Not since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991 have Americans paid such close attention to Russia .

I was thinking recently that this called to mind and interview I did in 1995, with a Russian woman named Luba Brezhneva.

If her last name sounds familiar, it should. Her uncle, Leonid Brezhnev, was Soviet premiere for 18 years after the ouster of his predecessor. Nikita Khrushchev.

Luba was just barely out of her teens when her uncle took over the USSR, and in many ways her story is simply that of a young woman finding her way in the world. Luba Brezhneva was in a unique position. And it wasn’t always a pleasant position.

In fact, it became downright dangerous when she fell in love with a German man.

Luba eventually left the USSR and came to the United States. In 1995 she wrote a book called The World I Left Behind. And that’s when I met her.

Now it is very important to remember that this interview was recorded almost 27 years ago, while the dust was still settling after the breakup of the Soviet Union. What you’ll hear us talking about should not necessarily be taken as an indication of what life in Russia may be like today.

So here now, from 1995, Luba Brezhneva.

Luba Brezhneva is 79 now. She lives in California and still writes.

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