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Wreckage

“I hopped off in the Podil [in Kiev] and walked down the Andriïvsky Uzviz, which was lined with beggars all the way. Some of them were whining and begging openly for money, others exposed their amputated limbs in silence. There were other, quiet, intelligent-looking elderly men and women, some with spectacles and pince-nez, standing there; they were professors and teachers of various kinds, like our math teacher who had died. In the case of some of them who sat there you couldn’t tell whether they were alive or dead. There had always been plenty of beggars about even before the war, but now there were so many it was simply frightful. They wandered all over the place, knocking on people’s doors, some of them people who had lost their homes through fire, some with babies, some of them on the run, and some swollen with hunger. It was bitterly cold and the people walked down the streets with grim expressions on their faces, hunching themselves up from the wind, worried, in ragged clothes, in all sorts of strange footwear and threadbare coats. It was indeed a city of beggars.” – A. Anatoli Kuznetsov, Babi Yar

Published inEconomicsThe Second World War

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