A moving essay from Mikhail Khodorkovsky, inmate at Penal Colony No. 7:
My family tells me that I also would not recognize Moscow: Many new buildings have gone up, and people look different, less Soviet.
Against the background of these changes, my world is practically standing still: There is little difference between the camp barracks on the Chinese border where I spent the first part of my term and my current barracks on the Finnish border. The people are also pretty much the same: Each has his own thoughts and his own unhappy fate.
But despite all the years that have passed, I have never become a part of this closed system, and I continue to live by the events taking place in Russia and the world. They reach me by way of newspapers and endless letters and the stories told by the people who are constantly coming in “from the outside.”