Wendy and I are in Moscow.
When I was growing up, one of the scariest people in the world (to me and many others) was Nikita Khrushchev, the leader of the Soviet Union from 1955 to 1964. In 1962, he and JFK went eyeball-to-eyeball in the Cuban Missile Crisis and came close to starting World War III.
One of Khrushchev's most famous outbursts came in 1956 when he told a group of western diplomats: "We will bury you!" In the context of thermo-nuclear war, this outburst was chilling. But Khrushchev later said he meant that the Soviet Union and communism would outlast the West, and that "we would come to your funeral to put dirt on your grave."
Today we visited the Novodevichy Cemetery where a number of Russian and Soviet notables are buried. I saw the graves and monuments of such people as: Boris Yelstin, composer Dmitri Shostakovich, cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, former first lady Raisa Gorbachev, foreign minister Andrei Gromyko, Olympic champion high jumper Valery Brumel, and playwright Anton Chekhov.
I also visited Khrushchev's grave (he died in 1971), and took great pleasure in placing the Ball of Whacks next to the monument head. For as much as he scared me when I was a kid, I thought I'd have a little fun now!
Actually, as I've read more and more about Soviet history, Khrushchev comes off as one of the "good guys," at least in the context of what came before him (Stalin) and after (Brezhnev). He pushed for market reforms in agriculture, and also had the courage to denounce one of the worst tyrants and murderers of the twentieth century (Stalin).