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How have they made it so soon?

John Lloyd, 21 November 1991

The Soviet Mafia 
by Arkady Vaksberg, translated by John Roberts and Elizabeth Roberts.
Weidenfeld, 275 pp., £19.99, September 1991, 0 297 81202 5
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... Union have been conducted since the August putsch – and underscores the importance of what Arkady Vaksberg writes in his uneven, irritating but critically important book. What Georgy Matiukhin wanted to say was that a large part of the developing business culture of the Soviet Union was criminal. In seeking to bring the new commercial banks under ...

Soviet Revisions

Oleg Gordievsky, 7 February 1991

Stalin: Triumph and Tragedy 
by Dmitri Volkogonov, edited and translated by Harold Shukman.
Weidenfeld, 642 pp., £29.95, February 1991, 0 297 81080 4
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Stalin: The Glasnost Revelations 
by Walter Laqueur.
Unwin Hyman, 383 pp., £16.95, February 1991, 0 04 440769 6
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The Prosecutor and the Prey: Vyshinsky and the 1930s Moscow Show Trials 
by Arkady Vaksberg, translated by Jan Butler.
Weidenfeld, 374 pp., £25, October 1990, 0 297 81064 2
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... recent years would be well advised to read Laqueur. The British reader may not know it, but Arkadi Vaksberg is one of the most popular people in the Soviet Union – a brilliant lawyer and writer. Before glasnost, be was the nearest thing to what might he called an investigative journalist, describing cases of scandalous injustice and corruption involving ...

The Russians Are Coming

John Lloyd, 11 May 1995

Comrade Criminal: The Theft of the Second Russian Revolution 
by Stephen Handelman.
Joseph, 360 pp., £16.99, September 1994, 0 7181 0015 8
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Crime Without Frontiers: The Worldwide Expansion of Organised Crime and the Pax Mafiosa 
by Clare Sterling.
Little, Brown, 274 pp., £17.50, June 1994, 0 316 91121 6
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Inside Yeltsin’s Russia 
by John Kampfner.
Cassell, 256 pp., £17.99, October 1994, 9780304344635
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A Dishonoured Society 
by John Follain.
Little, Brown, 356 pp., £16.99, February 1995, 0 316 90982 3
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... became the financiers of the black market.’ The environment encouraged the growth of crime. As Arkady Vaksberg makes clear in The Soviet Mafia (1991), the mafia of Brezhnev’s days thrived under the direct patronage of Communist Party leaders in Central Asia, in the Caucasian states and on the Russian Black Sea coast: areas where distance from ...

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