An elderly scientist did not have time to reach the apparatus. The agitated rector warned him:
"Today, at seven o'clock in the evening, Comrade Stalin himself will call you to your apartment!"
And I must say that the professor lived in a communal apartment. Therefore, after returning home, he went around all the neighbors and asked them at nineteen o'clock not to occupy the telephone. People, of course, went to meet a scientist, although they did not know with whom their neighbor would communicate. At the appointed time the bell rang.
Stalin said something like this:
“You have written a very wonderful, interesting book. It is dear to us also as that spoon for dinner or an egg for Christ's day. There is such a huge war, so the experience of past years is very valuable to us. But I strongly disagree with some of the messages in your book. There are fourteen such points. The first…"
Stalin said, as always, deaf and slow. Somewhere on the third or fourth point, the communal tenants became agitated: they, they say, respected the professor, and he is Hameet. The poor scientist had no choice but to say to the leader with a shiver in his voice:
“Sorry, Comrade Stalin, but we have a common phone - a communal apartment, and I can’t borrow it anymore, people need to call.”
Putting the phone down, the professor went to his room and began to collect the prison briefcase, because he understood what tactlessness he had made regarding the dear comrade of the leader. And I did the right thing (I did not allow it, but I collected it), because three security officers came to him exactly half an hour after the telephone conversation. They put the scientist in the black craters, brought him into a house with dark windows, lifted it up to the fourth floor, opened the doors, and the elder said:
“This is now your apartment. And in five minutes, Comrade Stalin will call you. ”
Exactly five minutes later the bell rang and the great leader continued, as if the conversation was not interrupted at all: “The fifth point, on which I disagree with you! ..”
In this bike, for me personally, it’s not at all what comes to mind right away: what a powerful man was Stalin! He took and put the professor without any delay in a separate apartment - I suppose, not in the “hruschob”, they simply did not exist then. Much more important is this: in the midst of such a terrible war, the leader did not just read a specific monograph, about which not all historians still knew, but also found time to call the author. But he could simply convey his opinion through his many assistants. Finally, he could have called the professor to the Kremlin for a talk. However, Joseph Vissarionovich chose the phone ...
As Alexander Sergeyevich used to say “our everything”, we are lazy and not curious. We cannot even imagine the fact that only during the 1418 days of the war did Stalin personally make several tens of thousands of phone calls! Or maybe even more. How many, surely we will never install. More than ever, we will not find out what was discussed by the leader in telephone conversations with directors of thousands of military enterprises relocated outside the Urals, with secretaries of party committees of these plants, with representatives of the State Defense Committee, with designers, generals, admirals, workers, collective farmers, artists, diplomats, scientists ...
During the Khrushchev's retroactive struggle against the cult of personality, the logs of the long-distance talks of the leader were destroyed. But it is authentically known that Joseph Vissarionovich could call the head of some Far Eastern collective farm in the middle of the night and ask him about the harvest in the region. The country during the Great Patriotic War and lived according to the routine established in the Kremlin: at night all the leaders were up until six in the morning. What if Stalin calls! And this is not a beautiful author's curl for a journalistic “liveliness”. So it was in reality. The leader really could call anywhere, anyone, anytime. The signalers in all parts of the immense Soviet Union knew this. They have even developed a technology to connect the Kremlin’s host with long-distance subscribers. Before Stalin was going to speak, telephone operators throughout the chain, no matter how long it turned out, had to “ring out” all telephone hubs, wipe plugs and cells with alcohol so that noises and cod would distract the “high talking parties”.
... Stalin almost mystically loved the telephone. He was his most devoted and indispensable assistant since the revolutionary turbulent years. Suppose Lenin also never disdained telephone communications. Otherwise, where did the legendary installation of the seizure of mail, telegraph, telephone and ... banks come from? Nevertheless, Vladimir Ilyich did not leave us inspiring examples of handling the telephone. With telegraph - yes, it was. There is even a famous painting by Igor Grabar “V.I. Lenin at the direct line ”, where the Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars issues the CC and the EBCU (valuable and even more valuable instructions). It is understandable. During the time of Lenin’s first government of workers and peasants, so-called long-distance telephone communication existed only between Moscow and St. Petersburg. The beginning of Stalin's activity in the party and in the country coincided with the rapid development of telephone communications. And the leader appreciated her with all the eastern wisdom and foresight. If you want, Joseph Stalin won a long and protracted struggle with Leon Trotsky solely with the help of a telephone set. And do not rush the author to pull over seditious promises. Because before each party congress, before each party conference, and just before any serious meeting (literally!), Joseph Vissarionovich did not disdain to call his comrades, to ask their opinion, to correct this opinion, if that happens, in the right direction. Yes, and just could call and ask: "Well, how are you doing, Comrade Kirov?".
... For some reason, it was in this place that an old joke was remembered. Midnight. Stalin calls Mikoyan:
"Anastas Ivanovich, how did it happen that twenty-six Baku commissars were shot, and you alone survived?"
With a tongue twingling with fear, Mikoyan once again tells why it was not him who was shot.
"Well, well, dear Anastas Ivanovich, good night."
Next call Molotov.
“Comrade Scriabin, here we have planted your Polina Pearl. Don't you think that husband and wife are one Satan? ”-“ Koba, well, how many times have I argued to you that I have never been interested in her vile deeds ”. “Well, good night.”
“Beria, don't you give up that lately you have sent too many people to the other world?” - “But these are our enemies, Koba!” - “Enemies, you say. Well, good night. ”
And in this way, the leader calls around all his political Politics colleagues. Then, with a deep sense of duty, he says to himself:
“Something like this: I comforted my comrades, now you can sleep yourself.”
Have you noticed that in the joke the phone is in second place after the leader? And folk stories, I tell you, never appear just like that, from the bay-barge.
They always reflect the very essence of our being.
Returning to the mentioned struggle between Stalin and Trotsky, it should be emphasized that the “great lion of the revolution” never condescended to talk on the phone with party members, “to ventilate their opinion”. Comrade Leib Bronstein preferred to act through the retinue of his numerous assistants, being always confident that when the time comes he will rise to the podium, give his next fiery, pep talk and ensure himself, as usual, the majority in front of this “genius mediocrity” by Stalin . At first, it happened all the time. However, Stalin, like no one, knew how to endure and wait. And by the end of the 1920-s, the personnel apparatus, picked up and placed on the ground by Stalin (including using a telephone set!), Threw Trotsky into the garbage storieswhere he, in fact, the place. Joseph Vissarionovich firmly knew that cadres decide everything. Lev Davydovich did not understand this truth. Stalin beat Trotsky precisely as an apparatchik. It will take time - and he will achieve exactly the same victory over Hitler.
Bunker Stalin, Samara
And here I really want to be understood correctly. Of course, in the past war our soldier won, because he had both the military skill better and the strength of the spirit more than that of the enemy. Weapon we generally released more efficiently than the enemy. In general, the potential forces of that socialist society, even with all its already meaningful evils, were objectively more progressive than the German society. (That is why Soviet totalitarianism and German totalitarianism can never be equal to each other. Because, for all the twists of those difficult times, socialism has never been bestial, misanthropic). But not least the victory came to us thanks to the accurate, reliable work of the domestic bureaucratic mechanism, the main unit of which was the T-bills. And the dynamo machine of that unit was Stalin. The most remarkable thing here is that after all the German bureaucracy opposed the Soviet bureaucracy - the most reliable in the world, debugged for centuries, and even fanatically pedantic.
I understand how vulnerable such a comparison is, but I repeat, among other things, Stalin managed to outplay Hitler as an apparatchik, as a bureaucratic leader who befell the higher laws of managerial functionaries and skillfully applied them in extreme military conditions. The Führer, by the way, also perfectly mastered all forms and methods of forcing society to war, nevertheless, he could not even create anything remotely resembling our T-bills. (It’s characteristic that the possessed person was as dismissive as Trotsky. But he loved to “broadcast for history” before the public. Therefore, in his office there was always (I repeat: always) a stenographer. It wouldn’t occur to Stalin like that.)
And now, dear readers, the discovery is amazing and somewhere even incredible! Nevertheless, it is quite obvious. It turns out that even the sad and tragic repression of 1938 of the year happened because of the phone! At the same time, the author is also well aware that the main reason for the repressions lies in the core essence of any revolution, which always devours those who plot it. There are no exceptions here. But as for specific events, namely, the famous trials of “Trotsky-Zinoviev dogs” and other “enemies of the people”, they were largely, if not decisively, provoked directly by telephone. And here not to do without a solid retreat.
At the beginning of 1930, the Red Army Intelligence Directorate (Intelligence Agency) managed to find an approach to the imperial adviser, V. Venner, head of the Reichswehr cryptography service, and through him to the head of the Germany’s phone tapping service, to imperial adviser Gans Kumpf. It was the phenomenal success of Soviet military intelligence. Never before has she sought such a thing! This breakthrough happened largely due to the efforts of Arthur Artuzov. Therefore, Stalin allowed him to report directly, bypassing his immediate superior, Jan Berzin. So Artuzov became in Reconnaissance eyes and ears of Stalin. He regularly wore tape recordings to the leader with telephone conversations of all the highest bosses of Germany, including Hitler himself! Joseph Vissarionovich had a good knowledge of German, although he never boasted about it. And he kept all the tapes with the conversations of his opponents, periodically listening to them. But just in case, he insured himself with the opinion of experts. They were unanimous: the records are authentic!
In April 1935, Kumpf suddenly committed suicide because of an unrequited love for a young dancer. Loss for Artuzov seemed irreplaceable. However, the case helped. His subordinate went to the deputy Kumpf - Kranke. He was an avid player, a tireless walker for women, and therefore he constantly lacked money. And once he offered Kranke: for a small fee, I will supply you with telephone information about the political situation not only in Germany, but also in the USSR. Stalin ordered such information to spare no money. And then it began that Mama Do not Cry. The leader began to receive tapes of telephone conversations of his “friends-comrades-enemies” with centners! Suppose he had previously assumed that many of his closest friends were plotting against him. Although not to the same extent!
Here, I deliberately ignore the question that German intelligence specially and maliciously supplied the first person in the USSR with information that compromised his comrades. This, as they say, is a topic for a separate study. Another thing is important. In any case, Stalin received cassettes with recordings of genuine telephone conversations of people who were really evil against him! You can compose something, substitute, correct on one tape. Especially in the middle. Xnumx's. But, when there are hundreds, thousands of tapes and each with such wild details of a conspiracy that hair stands on end, there can no longer be any dramatization into account. Joseph Vissarionovich understood: he was betrayed by people whom he trusted! Somewhere to the middle. 1930, Stalin began to receive literally the ninth wave of convincing evidence of a large-scale conspiracy to kill him and seize power in the country. The tape recordings of the conspirators' starkly frank conversations confirmed this. They were literally drunk and lost their vigilance, especially when they went abroad.
Together with Artuzov, the leader carefully studied the conversations of Grigory Zinoviev, Alexei Rykov, Lev Kamenev, Nikolai Bukharin and many others. Even Sergey Kirov, who was killed by this time! Pedantic Germans retained records of secret conversations, from which it followed that Kirov and his colleagues had the first intention of cracking down on a “overblown Georgian”. People's Commissar of Communications Rykov set out with amazing details how he would cut off communications in the Kremlin, as well as monitor the telephone conversations of the party and government leaders. Most of all, Stalin was amazed that the entire government connection, it turns out, could only be controlled by 5 – 7 signalmen!
Commissariat communications in the hands of the conspirators! This is unlikely to dream of the head of state, even in a nightmare! But that's not all. Iosif Vissarionovich listened to the tape recordings of telephone conversations in which the conspirators discussed in detail how best to organize an accident on the urban telephone network so that no one would be suspicious. He knew the voices of his old friends perfectly. For so many years of joint revolutionary struggle, he studied their every intonation. And now, with bitterness, he noted Plutarch following: the traitors betray themselves above all.
Stalin's telephone (Livadia Palace, Crimea)
The leader could not think of another important thing. If such a huge number of telephone conversations is recorded on the territory of the USSR, not only on ordinary lines of communication, but even on government, then what should be an extensive spy network, working under his nose, what are the scales of betrayal! And then Stalin instructed Lazar Kaganovich to conduct a thorough investigation of the activities of the NKVD, especially those departments that were responsible for government communication. It was at that time, with the filing of Lazar Moiseevich, that the small figure of Nikolai Ezhov appeared on the political horizon of the Soviet Union. It was he who personally established that the head of the NKVD, Heinrich Yagoda, unauthorizedly tapped conversations of all members of the government, including Stalin himself.
Moreover, Enoch Gershevich Yehuda independently determined which of the conversations he had heard should be reported to Stalin, but which did not, and grossly violated the established procedure for preparing reports for Stalin. During the investigation, the enormous scope of Berry’s illegal activities was revealed. He learned how to deftly manipulate the data obtained from telephone conversations so that he could easily influence Stalin’s decisions to appoint people to leadership positions in the country. Sometimes Yagoda believed (several times he even smugly talked out!) That he was powerful, Yehuda, and not Stalin. Upon learning of this, Joseph Vissarionovich was furious. It seems to the reader that Yagoda was immediately dealt with. By no means. As a great statesman, Stalin never chopped off his shoulder. He appointed Yagoda Commissar of Communications of the USSR. True, he ordered the NKVD officers to establish permanent supervision over the new head of the department in order to reveal all his contacts with the workers of the NKVD, the Red Army, the Central Committee, the institutes and enterprises that produced communication devices.
At the end of 1935, Artur Artuzov received the first information that Mikhail Tukhachevsky organized a conspiracy against Stalin in order to remove him from his post as head of government. The leader, as always, incredulously perceived this signal, believing it to be frank disinformation. Although again, just in case, ordered to strengthen control over the marshal. In an interview with Artuzov complained:
“I have the feeling that someone is constantly watching me!” - “I confess, Joseph Vissarionovich, I myself am confused.” - “But could the Germans start the game with us by sending us disinformation?” - “This can not be ruled out. But what I guarantee you for sure is that all materials are authentic. Several times I involved famous Soviet musicians in the analysis of tape recordings. Of the fifteen people, no one expressed doubts about the authenticity of the voices on the tapes. ”
In December 1936 of the year, an employee of Artuzov in Germany reported that Kranke had requested a huge amount, since he had very valuable information concerning the leader himself. The reconnaissance amount paid Kranke paid and received ... Stalin's conversation with his wife Alliluyeva on the eve of her suicide!
... Joseph Vissarionovich possessed inflexible, truly steel will and inhuman exposure. Once, in a link to a picnic, Yakov Sverdlov began jokingly saying that Kobu could easily have been recruited by the secret police, intimidating him or torturing him and allegedly could well have betrayed his comrades. At that time, such rumors were actively exaggerated in the party environment. Then Dzhugashvili silently put his left hand on the burning coals. Smell of grilled human flesh. Sverdlov became ill. And Koba calmly remarked:
"Remember, Jacob, and tell others: you can neither intimidate nor break me."
And yet, having heard the voice of the deceased wife, Stalin turned pale and clutched at his heart. Artuzov called the doctors. Stalin with a heart attack was taken to the hospital. Recovering from the disease, he began to act quickly and decisively. 11 January 1937, Artuzov was released from work in the Intelligence Agency and transferred to the NKVD to work on archives. Iosif Vissarionovich personally ordered to break off all contacts with Kranka and the rest of the German agents at the Hermann Göring Research Institute. In March, 1937 was arrested by Heinrich Yagoda, who admitted that he had instructed Karl Pauker to listen to all of Stalin's telephone conversations, including those that were conducted via HF communication. To this end, he repeatedly sent Pauker to Germany to acquire special equipment for remote listening. She was found in his office and in one safe house of the NKVD, which was used only by Yagoda.
The telephone used by the chairman of the USSR Council of People's Commissars I.V. Stalin during the Tehran Conference
In April, 1937 was arrested by Pauker, and later by Artuzov. During the search, it turned out that the latter had hidden from Stalin the recordings of telephone conversations from Tukhachevsky with German generals received from the Germans. They were made during his participation in the German maneuvers of the 1932 of the year, where he negotiated remuneration for the transfer of secret information from the German army. Artuzov also hid from Stalin the recordings of several conversations of Jerome Uborevich, Mikhail Tukhachevsky and Ion Yakir in 1935, containing information that they were developing a detailed plan for seizing power. Artuzov was an old friend of Tukhachevsky and at his own risk did not report such information to Stalin. This played a decisive role in imposing the death sentence on him. The concealment of such information was interpreted as aiding German intelligence.
In May, Otto Steinbrück, Gleb Bokogo and Stephen Uzdansky were arrested. Thus began a grand cleansing: they destroyed everyone who knew at least something about the project of listening. Identified those who could help Yagoda, Pauker install listening devices. Yezhov proposed to improve the search for enemies. Those who had ever met with the repressed or their relatives or spoke to them by telephone at least once were counted among them, therefore the number of such “enemies of the people” increased many times over. The arrests covered not only the Intelligence Agency, the NKVD, the Central Committee, the Red Army, but also many of the People's Commissariats who carried out the orders of the Red Army, and first of all the People's Commissariat of Communications. The materials found during the search of Artuzov served as a pretext for the arrest of M. Tukhachevsky 22 in May 1937 of the year in Kuibyshev. 25 May Marshal interrogated, presenting records of more than fifty of his telephone conversations! Mikhail Nikolayevich immediately admitted that he had participated in the conspiracy.
An amazing thing: at all trials, “enemies of the people” very quickly confessed to spying against the USSR when they were provided with tape recordings of their conversations. Hearing his speech, where they discussed in detail the various topics of cooperation with German intelligence, sabotage, sabotage or the overthrow of the government, the arrested people experienced such a psychological shock that they signed any evidence that the NKVD investigators presented to them. This partly can be justified by the fact that many commanders, including M. Tukhachevsky, who went through the war, confessed to all the charges against them just the next day after the start of interrogations. It can not be explained only by the fact that during interrogations in relation to them torture was used. Although, of course, they were also actively used to knock out confessions. Stalin himself stated: “The NKVD used the methods of physical impact, which the Central Committee allowed. It was absolutely right and necessary. ” On the other hand, Kaganovich once said: "Real Bolsheviks and under torture will never go to the voluntary confession of their guilt." And here a psychological paradox arises, so far, by the way, not fully clarified. Why do our numerous scouts, guerrillas, officers and generals who were captured during World War II, endured the most severe torture of the Gestapo and did not give any evidence, and many combat commanders of the Red Army confessed at the interrogations in the NKVD almost immediately and many themselves recanted?
One explanation could be this. The defendants were so badly shocked when they heard their voice and the interlocutor's voice in the recordings that they lost the ability to control themselves and admitted that they had never actually committed them. Recall how the telephone recording had an effect on the leader. But he was not a slander like his opponents. Thus, the investigators obtained any evidence from those arrested. The main thing, as Stalin demanded, the recognition of guilt must come from the arrested themselves. Why was it so necessary to Stalin? Probably because the tape recordings received from German intelligence had a tremendous psychological impact on him: he no longer trusted the investigators of the NKVD either.
Stalin’s closest associates — Lazar Kaganovich, Kliment Voroshilov, Semyon Budyonny, frightened by such a peculiar form of technical plot, strongly demanded that Stalin investigate the activities of employees of all organizations that dealt with communications, its protection and control. As a result, G. Bokogo’s cryptographic department was practically crushed. 70% percent of employees shot. The repressions struck hard at the technical departments of the Razvedupra and at the Research Institute of Communications of the RKKA Razvedupra, which led to a halt in the development of promising special equipment for interception systems. Production of new types of encryption technology has stopped. The chiefs of 6, 7, 10, and the secret ciphering divisions of the Red Army Intelligence Agency, Jacob Fayvush, Pavel Kharkevich, Alexei Lozovsky, E. Ozolin, and many others, were shot. In 1937, cryptography in the NKVD and Intelligence services was virtually destroyed in the same way as radio intelligence.
2 June 1937, Stalin spoke at an expanded meeting of the Military Council under the People's Commissar of Defense:
“In all areas we broke the bourgeoisie, only in the field of intelligence we were beaten, like boys, like guys. Here is our main weakness. There is no intelligence, real intelligence. I take this word in the broad sense of the word, in the sense of vigilance and in the narrow sense of the word also, in the sense of good organization of intelligence. Our military intelligence is bad, weak, littered with spies.
Our intelligence on the PU line was headed by a spy Guy, and inside the KGB intelligence there was a whole group of owners of this business who worked for Germany, Japan, Poland, all they wanted, but not for us. Intelligence is the area where, for the first time in 20, we suffered a severe defeat. And the task is to bring intelligence to its feet. These are our eyes, these are our ears. ”
So because of the "wiretapping empire" built by Yagoda, the whole complex of problems associated with intelligence became the chief problem of the leader. Mass betrayal of comrades also did not improve the mood of Joseph Vissarionovich. Worst of all, it turned out that he could no longer speak calmly on his beloved phone, fearing that even "undiagnosed traitors" might be listening to him. Therefore, he burned a “great Soviet ear” created by Yagoda with a hot iron. For some time, this struggle against "internal enemies" came to the fore. Stalin was no longer up to protection from an external enemy. He purposely did not improve, if not worse, the link between his powerful army, intelligence, the government and the Central Committee.
As a result, by the beginning of the Great Patriotic War in the USSR, communications in such power structures as the Red Army, the NKVD, the Central Committee and other defense departments, dragged out a miserable existence. It is difficult for someone to believe this, but in the very first days of the war, Joseph Stalin and Georgy Zhukov were connected with the fronts through the Central Telegraph on Gorky Street! Underground communication nodes did not exist at all. Moreover, with the opening of the HF-communication line Moscow-Berlin, which passed through Brest, German intelligence had the opportunity to listen to all the conversations of the Soviet government and the people's commissariat of defense! In the reserve of the High Command, communications were missing as a class. Neglect of communication, rightly called the nerves of war, turned out to be complete, total, all-penetrating. Only by 1945, the situation here has changed somewhat. Although on the whole we can safely say: if by the end of the war we were significantly ahead of the Germans in all the main areas of the armed struggle, we still did not overtake the enemy’s communications. However, this, as the reader understands, is a separate topic.
We will return to the telephone as a means of communication between Stalin and the outside world. And here is a very eloquent memory of the Chief Marshal aviation Alexander Golovanov:
“If Stalin called himself, then he usually greeted, inquired about affairs and, if it was necessary that you personally came to him, never said:“ I need you, come, ”- or something like that. He always asked: “Can you come to me?” - and, having received an affirmative answer, he said: “Please come.” Quite often he also asked about health and family: “Do you have everything, do you need anything, do you need help with your family?” ... Even holding very important meetings, Stalin never turned off the phone. So it was at that time when there was a discussion of more efficient use of our divisions. The phone rang. Stalin, without haste, went to the office and picked up the phone. When talking, he never pressed the phone close to his ear, but kept it at a distance, since the volume of the sound in the device was amplified. A nearby person could freely hear the conversation. Called corps commissioner Stepanov - a member of the Military Council of the Air Force. He reported to Stalin that he was in Perkhushkovo (here, a little west of Moscow, the headquarters of the Western Front was located). “Well, how are you doing there? - Stalin asked. - The command raises the question that the front headquarters is very close to the front edge of the defense. We need to bring the front headquarters east for Moscow, and organize the command post on the eastern outskirts of Moscow! ”There was a rather long silence. “Comrade Stepanov, ask your comrades — do they have any shovels?” Said Stalin calmly. “Now ...” followed a long pause again. “And what kind of shovels, Comrade Stalin?” - “But don't care what.” - “Now. “Quite quickly Stepanov reported:“ There are shovels, Comrade Stalin! ”-“ Tell your comrades, let them take shovels and dig their own graves. ” The headquarters of the front will remain in Perkhushkovo, and I will stay in Moscow. Goodbye". Slowly, Stalin hung up. He did not even ask which comrades who exactly posed these questions. And, as if nothing had happened, he continued the interrupted conversation. ”
... As already mentioned, Joseph Vissarionovich communicated by telephone with a variety of people, ranging from the marshal and ending with the stoker in the Kremlin boiler room. (There was a case when Stalin asked the latter to reduce the heating temperature a little.) However, the leader’s communication with the creative intelligentsia is a special article. According to some reports, he sporadically or often talked on the phone with writers. Stalin often talked on the phone with the singer Ivan Kozlovsky. Ivan Semyonovich himself told the author of these lines:
“If you want to know, Stalin called me home several times. I also had a phone: K, six hundred ... so I forgot ... "-" And what did you and the leader talk about? "-" They talked about life, about art, about different things. He was the cleverest peasant, though, of course, very cunning ... ”-“ And when did he usually call you? ”-“ Always after midnight. He knew when the artists returned home after work ... "
I have no reason to disbelieve the great singer, especially my countryman. With the exception of the statement: "About life, about art". For all his greatness and all-round intellectual development, Stalin was still a very concrete, pragmatic person. And this is especially clearly seen almost in the most historically legendary telephone conversation of the leader with Boris Pasternak, held in 1934 year. The reason for that conversation was the arrest of the poet Osip Mandelstam. The fate of Mandelstam was worried by Nikolai Bukharin, who wrote a letter to Stalin with a postscript: “Pasternak, too, is worried.” Knowing that Pasternak was at that time with Stalin in favor, Bukharin wanted to emphasize with this postscript that this concern was, as it were, a social matter. After reading the note of Bukharin, Stalin phoned Pasternak.
There are 14 (fourteen!) Versions of this communication between the Master of the Kremlin and the Poet. The author of the closest option is Osip Mandelstam’s friend and Boris Pasternak, poetess Anna Akhmatova:
“Stalin called Boris and said that he had been ordered that everything would be all right with Mandelstam. He asked Pasternak why he didn't bother. "If my friend got into trouble, I would climb the wall to save him." Pasternak replied that if he had not been bothered, Stalin would not have learned about this case. “Why didn't you contact me or the writing organizations?” - “Writing organizations have not been doing this since 1927 of the year.” “But is he your friend?” Pasternak hesitated, and Stalin, after a short pause, continued the question: “But is he a master, master?” Pasternak answered: “It doesn’t matter ...”. Pasternak thought that Stalin checks whether he knows about the poems (“We live, not feeling the country under us, / Our speeches are not heard in ten steps. / Only the Kremlin mountaineer is heard, - / The Slayer and the muzhikobortsa.” - M.Z. ), and by this he explained his shaky answers. "Why do we always talk about Mandelstam and Mandelstam, I wanted to talk to you for so long." - “About what?” - “About life and death.” Stalin hung up.
Because the leader too valued his time to waste his time on idle talk, especially on such abstract topics. The great and deep Pasternak did not understand this. He called the chief’s secretariat back to the secretariat, but wasn’t connected again. "Can I talk about this conversation?" - "And this is your own business," - said the secretary. The next day, all of Moscow knew about Stalin's call. Which, by the way, did not change one iota of his attitude to the poet.
No less well-known telephone conversation took place between Joseph Stalin and Mikhail Bulgakov.
“Bulgakov ran, excited, to our apartment (with Shilovsky) on Bol. Rzhevsky told the following. After dinner, he went to bed, as always, but then the phone rang, and Lyuba (L.E. Belozerskaya, the writer's wife. - MZ) called him, saying that they were asking from the Central Committee. M.A. I did not believe it, deciding that it was a joke (then it was done), and disheveled, irritated, took up the phone: “Mikhail Afanasyevich Bulgakov?” - “Yes, yes.” - "Now with you, Comrade Stalin will speak." - "What? Stalin? Stalin? ”And then he heard a voice with a Georgian accent:“ Yes, Stalin speaks to you. Hello, Comrade Bulgakov. - "Hello, Joseph Vissarionovich." - “We received your letter. Read with friends. You will have a favorable answer on it. Or maybe it's true - are you asking abroad? What, are we very tired of you? ”-“ I have been thinking a lot lately - can a Russian writer live outside the homeland. And it seems to me that it cannot. ” - "You're right. I think so too. Where do you want to work? In the Art Theater? ”-“ Yes, I would. But I talked about it, and they refused. ” - "And you apply there." It seems to me that they will agree. We would need to meet, talk to you. ” - "Yes Yes! Iosif Vissarionovich, I really need to talk to you. ” “Yes, you need to find time and meet, sure.” And now I wish you all the best. ”
... I will end these somewhat chaotic notes with what I began. For his long leading life (almost four decades), Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin used the telephone a myriad of times. How many exactly, we will never install. Through this simple apparatus, which was first patented by Alexander Bell in 1876, Alexander Bell, the leader practically not only led the great country, but also often communicated directly with the huge, incredible multitude of its people. Therefore, when I see an image of a leader with an indispensable pipe, it seems to me that it is not entirely accurate. Stalin often smoked cigarettes. But the phone never changed.