This post first appeared on Russia Insider
She played a remarkable historic role, by accident.
Her only son was a hemophiliac, and as she and her husband struggled with this wrenching disease, they wrote the best-selling book "Nicholas and Alexandra", about the extraordinarily close relationship of the last Tsar and his German wife, as they they struggled with the same disease in the heir to the throne.
The Massies' insights into their tragedy was one of the reasons the book glowed with authenticity.
For Russians, a visit from Massie is cause for celebration. Russian TV rolled out the red carpet. Click CC to turn on captions. Transcript below.
Massie went on to write of her love for Russian culture in the best-selling "Land of the Firebird", which remains one of the best books on the subject, and has been continually in print for 40 years!, and when Reagan decided to try to engage Gorbachev to end the cold war, he recruited her as his advisor on the human side of Russia.
Ever the politician, Reagan laid great stake on the importance of being able to build personal trust not only with Gorbachev, but also with the Russian people. Massie met with Reagan 20 times, often together with Nancy, and she coached them on the nuances of Russian culture and mentality, sharing her enthusiasm and love for Russia.
Russians see Massie as a heroine. Putin, whom she knows from his days as deputy mayor of St. Petersburg famously embraced and kissed her on Easter Eve at a service at Christ the Savior Cathedral, a few months after he first became President.
Massie, a former Episcopalian, is a convert to Russian Orthodox Christianity. Gorbachev also counts her as a treasured old friend. In the video, watch the famous nationalist-conservative artist Ilya Glazunov, about whom Russia Insider wrote a major profile, practically smother her with a big smooch as he shouts that "No Westerner understands Russia as well as she does."
Massie's second husband was the renowned MIT scientist Seymour Papert, who was a trailblazing legend and visionary in the computing world.
She helped end the cold war, joined the Russian church, and loved Russia her whole life
The American Suzanne Massie, who taught Reagan Russian proverbs, is visiting Moscow
Her new book is being published hereBut first, she went to see the artist Ilya GlazunovLet's listen to what the old friends talked about
'I know a million foreigners ...But no one knows, loves, and feels Russia like she does.'
They've been friends for 30 years ...He - a Russian artist, she, an American writer They are both 86 years old,Wise, and experienced from their many years But also youthful in their exaltation, An 18 year old could not kiss a hand more gallantly or tenderly,
Ilya Glazunov and Suzanne Massie are deep in conversation, Surrounded by paintings of Russia, How could it be otherwise?' I always loved Russia very much ...I love Russia to this very day ...and I think that the most important thing, despite everything ...Is that Russia and America should be together!'
Her views are unchanged since the 1980swhen she worked as an advisor to Ronald ReaganHe not only saw Russia through her eyes,He spoke about Russia with her phrases ...It was Ms. Massie who advised Reagan to try to charm Russian women ...... and he quickly won their affection.It was she who recommended he use the phrase:Doverai no proverai (trust, but verify)
She first came to Russia in 1967, and Reagan kept her book 'Land of the Firebird - The Beauty of Old Russia', on his bedside table, perhaps that is why the cold war ended the way it did.
'My mother lived in Russia for 5 years during the revolution, She was Swiss ...and she always told me when I was a child ...Russia is a land of the heart!'
She found the paintings about Russian history fascinating,and halted at one which depicted the tragedy of the 1990sRecognizing the symbols in the painting she shakes her head sadly and says:'
You know, I MUCH prefer the 19th century!'
She is friends with Russian artists, poets, and musicians,Easily quotes Pushkin and Bulgakov,and is in Moscow to sign a contract for her new book,Russians want to give Massie's book to President Trump to read,a long shot perhaps, but, you never know ...
'If Suzanne, can convey to Trump even 1% of what is in her extraordinary book ...... it will be impossible for him not to love Russia!'
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