P.J. O’Rourke once wrote a book called Holidays in Hell. If you’re up for a virtual one, how about a motorcycle ride past the abandoned hulk of Chernobyl and its nearby deserted ghost towns, with Elena, a beautiful Russian brunette as your guide?
Steven Den Beste links to Elena’s site as the launching pad for an essay on the archeological implications of Chernobyl. Den Beste describes what it tells us about the state of the Soviet Union at the time of the Chernobyl meltdown, only four years after Arthur Schlesinger, just back from a trip to Moscow in 1982, said that President Reagan was delusional about the crumbling state of the Evil Empire:
“I found more goods in the shops, more food in the markets, more cars on the street — more of almost everything,” he said, adding his contempt for “those in the U.S. who think the Soviet Union is on the verge of economic and social collapse, ready with one small push to go over the brink.”