Next Sunday will mark the 25th year since died the renowned scientist and physicist, academician and the Noble prize laureate, whose outstanding scientific merits stepped back into the shadow of his courageous human rights activity in the late Soviet area. Resistance, exile to Gorky, and final return to social life (along with Solzhenitsyn) — to signify the new time had come. The yesterday’s persecuted became a living ethical standard. Today Russian Human Rights Commissioner Ella Pamfilova recalls Andrey Sakharov.
Ella Pamfilova: I first saw Andrey Mr Sakharov back in 1989. Those were the last years of the enormous country of the Soviet Union. Just imagine: the large Kremlin Palace of Congresses is in the seethe of political passions and emotions of an impressive gathering. A vast number of members of parliament make it similar to an anthill. In this impressive gathering I was a young woman who had worked "in production" for 12 years at a Moscow
The main feeling I’ve had of this person — he was beyond vanity. He carried himself as if he did not notice at all the passions boiling around. He seemed to be a man always focused on a very important idea, absorbed in some serious internal contemplation and feelings. In all that noise and hubbub he was very calm, unhurried and focused, and seemed a very
But as soon as this cosy and
I came across him a few times in the Interregional Deputies Group, but then I felt myself, of course, an ordinary person among stars and was listening more, heeded him and marvelled at him. And I tried to memorise the feeling of a man who was strongly committed to something most important, while outside he was gentle and calm. He was sure that you don't have to scream, apply force or pressure, or be aggressive. You just need to formulate the idea, accurately and clearly, which disturbs you, which you live through. It’s not even a thought, it’s a mental feeling. And it is sure to sprout in due time and place, so it will become audible. Even if now only a few are able to hear it. That’s the commitment of his that one doesn’t need to thrust his or her thought upon people because the thought will find its own way and begin to live in those who will support it, was very important for him. So, as far as he realised his own internal force, he could not admit any aggression — neither in his actions, nor in his voice. Andrey Sakharov is an antipode of aggression.