In the year of collapse, 1992, Russia was about as bad as it could get. But Ukraine was even worse than that. Here is a small illustration of the difference: When I lived in Moscow (which I did in that era) I always tried to take my vacations in the Soviet sphere. In the summer of 1992, we set out for a week in the Crimea by the Black Sea near Foros—the scene, a year before, of the kidnap of Mikhail Gorbachev. It is a startlingly lovely place, where the high hills slope down to the shore, and it has a kindly climate. It is also part of Ukraine, for tricky historical reasons, despite its population being mainly Russian.
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