Cover Osteuropa 11-12/2017

In Osteuropa 11-12/2017

The KGB archive
One year after the putsch

Arsenij Roginskij, Nikita Ochotin

Deutsche Fassung


Since the publication of the Gulag Archipelago, a key demand made by Soviet dissidents was that the KGB archives should be opened in order to shed light on the crimes of the regime. However, they were told that this was not possible. With Perestroika and the collapse of Communist Party rule, the situation changed. On 24 August 1991, following the failed putsch, President Yeltsin ordered responsibility for the KGB archive to be handed over to the state archive authorities. Special committees were founded for regulating the transfer of the archive material and the conditions of access and usage. However, their substantial efforts became bogged down in the obstruction of the state security services and the change in the political climate. It became clear that the KGB archive will never be opened until there is a comprehensive reform of the security organs.

(Osteuropa 11-12/2017, pp. 53–75)