A Speech to the People’s Congress

In a rush to adjourn on June 9, the Congress of People’s Deputies grudgingly voted Andrei Sakharov five minutes to make a closing statement. He had written down his assessment of the Congress’s historic first session (May 26–June 9), but the pressure of time forced him to omit or condense …

On Gorbachev: A Talk with Andrei Sakharov

The following exchange with Andrei Sakharov took place at a meeting at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington on November 14. PETER REDDAWAY (Secretary of the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies): Since 1953, i.e., since Stalin’s death, the general pattern of Soviet economic and political development …

A Letter to My Scientific Colleagues

Dear Friends, Two years ago your support played a vital role in resolving the problem of my daughter-in-law Liza Alexeyeva’s departure to join her husband. I turn to you once again concerning a matter of critical importance which could have tragic consequences. I ask your help in securing permission for …

A Reply to Slander

In early 1970, I received a phone call from Yakov B. Zeldovich.[^1] He told me that Samuel Lazarevich Zivs,[^2] a professor of law, very much wished to meet with me; he said that Zivs, a member of the Institute for Government and Law, was a good person and had done …

The Responsibility of Scientists

The following essay was written for the International Conference in Honor of Andrei Sakharov, sponsored by the New York Academy of Sciences, the American Institute of Physics, and the American Physical Society at Rockefeller University, New York, on May 1, 1981. Because of the international nature of our profession, scientists …

The Death Penalty

Andrei Sakharov was unable to attend the Amnesty International Conference on the Abolition of the Death Penalty held in Stockholm in December. He sent the following statement instead. I regard the death penalty as a savage and immoral institution which undermines the moral and legal foundations of a society. A …

In Answer to Solzhenitsyn

Solzhenitsyn sent his letter to the Soviet leaders on September 5, 1973. Soon after he was deported from the USSR, it was published abroad,[^1] and excerpts were read over the radio. I believe it to be very important that this statement by an author of such indisputable world-wide prestige—a statement …

How I Came to Dissent

In giving autobiographical information, I hope to put an end to false rumors with respect to facts which have frequently been misrepresented in the press, because of ignorance or sensationalism. I was born in 1921 in Moscow, into a cultured and close family. My father was a teacher of physics …