Giorgi Tsagareli, Tbilisi
Tbilisi photographer George Tsagareli’s series: “From my soviet life, story 2
There was a ‘Lenin room’ in every military unit of the Soviet Army. The walls in those rooms were decorated with visual propaganda and the portraits of the world’s proletariat leaders.
There were central and army newspaper files on the desks in the ‘Lenin room” in our unit. They were accurately replenished by the company postman. The “Pravda”, Izvestiya”, “Komsomolskaya Pravda”, “Krasnaya Zvezda”, and so on, were ranked according to their prestige.
There was a chair at each table with the newspaper files and after military training, each soldier was supposed to sit and engage in self-development, reading the party press.
There was no toilet paper in the soldiers’ toilet and there was not actually supposed to be any there. So, it was quite natural that the soldiers used newspaper there. A soldier could not go to the WC with a letter from home, could he.
The only condition that a morale officer put forward was: “Everything but “Pravda”! Don’t touch “Pravda, guys!”
This rule was complied with and no one encroached on the pureness of “Pravda”.
But once, when it was dark, someone carelessly tore half of the front page of the country’s main newspaper. The next morning, the morale officer discovered that ‘sacrilege’. “You, thugs! he reprimanded us during the morning formation. “I’ve asked you not to use the “Pravda in the toilet, haven’t I!
The series’ first story – ‘A minibus was a part of the Tbilisi mentality’ – here