Articles by Mitchell Landsberg

A Ransom Scheme From Russia to L.A.

  • 25 March 02
Federal authorities laid out their account of a botched kidnapping-for-ransom scheme that they said spanned the globe from Los Angeles to Dubai to Moscow, ending in an icy green reservoir in the rugged folds of the Sierra Nevada's gold country.

Year of Tamer Tricks, More Treats

  • 26 October 01
A fire is raging out of control at a crematorium. Firefighters greet people at the door, supposedly to lead them to safety.

Demand Outpaces Breweries

Skating System Still Creating Stars

Buryatia Doesn't Lack Food, Just Cash to Buy It

No Easy Way to Flee Anti-Semitism

Krasnoyarsk Boasts Europe's Best

Scientists Join Miners At White House Rally

Lebed Views Governor Post As Springboard to Kremlin

Success Is Sweet at Bolshevik Factory

Border Town Struggles Against Failing Health

Ghosts of Cold War Elude U.S. Search Team

Kolobov's 'Onegin' Hits Broadway

Studies Say Russia Drinking Itself to Death

Primakov Embraces 'First Strike' Policy

Packing a Piece in Wild, Wild East

China Gets Red Carpet Treatment In Moscow

Spokesman Describes Yeltsin As 'Concerned' About Belarus

Emigre Gay Activist Revels in Notoriety

NEW YORK -- In case after case, gay men and lesbians seeking political asylum in the United States describe secret lives stained by fear and shame, spent deep in the closet in their native lands. Not Yaroslav Mogutin. Perhaps the most prominent of the more than 40 people granted asylum because of their sexual orientation, Mogutin is a Russian journalist, gay rights advocate, performance artist and all-around troublemaker who sees himself as a modern-day Oscar Wilde. Brash and self-assured, Mogutin burst onto the world stage April 12, 1994, when he and his American partner, Robert Filippini, applied for a marriage license at one of Moscow's official wedding palaces. They were, as expected, turned down, but the highly publicized event landed their picture in newspapers and television broadcasts around the world. At the time, Mogutin was only 19 and already a successful freelance journalist whose articles pulled back a curtain on the hitherto secret lives of Soviet and Russian gays.

The Funny Side Of U.S. Elections