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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

MOSCOW MAILBAG: Clinton's Call-in Show, Millions of Soviet Dead

U.S. President Bill Clinton visited our country earlier this month, and John Devon of Pasadena, California, wanted to know about Clinton's live call-in radio show f was it featured on the Voice of Russia?

No, actually, it wasn't; radio Ekho Moskvy, part of the Media-MOST empire, conducted the show. But the Voice of Russia did give a summary of his speech to our parliament, and Russian television featured both the call-in show and the State Duma speech. The left wing of our parliament, basically the Communists, ignored Clinton's speech and did not deign to show up. One-third of the hall, we are told, was filled with Foreign Ministry officials and security guards so that it would look full. Communist Deputy Vassily Shandybin, who some time ago was shown on television engaged in a fist fight in parliament, said, "We had surrendered the Kremlin to the United States. Now we have surrendered our parliament." He also referred to the U.S. president as Satan. He showed no sense of decency, no sense of courtesy to a guest.

Speaking of the call-in show, I was surprised by Clinton's friendliness. He stressed that he always tried to support a free, prosperous and powerful Russia; he said he wants Russia to be a great nation.

A Mr. Ilinden of Toronto, Canada, asked about two men who once helped the Soviet Union craft an image as a great nation: Sergei Korolyov, the legendary rocket designer, and Marshal MikhailTukhachevsky. Ilinden said he had read that Korolyov had been jailed and Tukhachevsky had been shot f is this true?

Sadly, yes. Korolyov was arrested, as was Andrei Tupolev, the aircraft designer. Marshal Tukhachevsky was shot, as were other marshals and generals. In fact, 80 percent of our army officers, from major on up, were either shot or sent to camps during Stalin's regime.

But Stalin didn't stop with the top brass; he extended his brutality to the masses. About 13 million peasants fell victim to repressions in the enforced collectivization against rich farmers. Another 6 million to 7 million died in an artifically created famine. In 1937 and 1938, during the Great Terror, another 5 million to 7 million fell victim; 1 million were shot. Then there were the mass deportations of whole nations, including 2 million Germans; Kalmyks, Chechens, the Ingush and Crimean Tatars comprised another 3 million. During World War II, at least 10 million to 12 million innocent people were sentenced to prison terms for various reasons. Historian Roy Medvedyev puts the grim total at around 40 million. And yet, you will still find people who stick up for the old system. They should thank God they weren't among those 40 million.

Joe Adamov hosts "Moscow Mailbag" on the Voice of Russia.