The Final Act: The Dramatic, Revealing Story of the Moscow Helsinki Watch Group

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9780688068592: The Final Act: The Dramatic, Revealing Story of the Moscow Helsinki Watch Group
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Book by Goldberg, Paul

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From Publishers Weekly:

When the Soviet Union signed the Helsinki Agreements on human rights in 1975, physicist Yuri Orlov, Anatoly Shcharansky, Yelena Bonner and Aleksandr Ginzburg formed a group whose declared purpose was to monitor the U.S.S.R.'s compliance with the accord. Playing cat-and-mouse with the authorities even as they were being infiltrated by Kremlin moles, this gutsy band of intellectuals was soon catapulted into the arena of superpower politics. Their protests, reported in the Western press, became a chip in President Carter's bargaining with Moscow. The Moscow-Helsinki Watch Group attracted Russian nationalists, Zionists, Catholics, Pentecostals and ethnic separatists to the cause. Similar movements sprang up from the Ukraine to Poland; but, by 1982, the outcome for most of the dissidents was imprisonment or forced silence. Goldberg, a freelance journalist, draws on Russian-language sources and interviews to recreate the dissidents' conversations and maneuvering in great detail. It's a remarkable story of blind courage in the face of overwhelming odds.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Soviet dissidents continue to be heard. After the books by Martin Gilbert ( The Jews of Hope , LJ 1/85), Sylvia Rothchild ( A Special Legacy , LJ 8/85), and Elena Bonner ( Alone Together , LJ 1/87), we now have this account of the Moscow Helsinki Watch Group. In the 1970s, a handful of Soviet intellectuals, Jewish and not, alerted the world to Soviet offenses against the human rights clauses of the Helsinki treaty. Goldberg's narrative is jumbled and slangy, yet certain conclusions are evident. One is the vital role played by the Western media. Then there is the dispiriting reality of life in Brezhnev's USSR. The courage of the people involved is also remarkableit has produced results. Ten years later, in the midst of glasnost , has anything changed? The jury has not yet returned a verdict. R.H. Johnston, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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