Wednesday, December 06, 2006

the Russian 'Tobacco Rebellion'

I heard first heard of this incident a couple weeks ago and did a little research. not a whole lot on the Internet about it; this story is from '96...

"In the summer of 1990, the Soviet Union's terminal economic crisis descended upon the product that many Russians considered their most irreplaceable: cigarettes. Faced with mass shortages of Soviet-made brands, angry smokers in Moscow, Leningrad, Kiev and other Soviet cities staged the protests that became known as the tobacco rebellion. A desperate President Mikhail Gorbachev fired the minister in charge of the industry and pleaded with the West for help.

To the rescue rode Philip Morris and R.J. Reynolds..."

read the rest of this article at

something about this "strikes" me as an interesting seed for a story (fiction?)
imagine living in a place that is bearable only because tobacco and vodka are readily available.