You can't say that we covered everything up right away, we didn't even know the extent of what was happening. We were directed by the highest political strategy. But if you put aside the emotions, and the politics, you have to admit that no one believed in what had happened. Even the scientists couldn't believe it! Nothing like it had ever happened, not just here but anywhere in the world. The scientists who were there at the plant study the situation and made immediate decisions. I recently watched the program, "Moment of Truth," where they interviewed Aleksandr Yakovlev, a member of the Politburo, the main ideologue of the party under Gorbachev. What did he remember? They also, the ones up top, didn't really see the whole picture. At a meeting of the politburo, one of the generals explained: "What's radiation? At the testing grounds, after an atomic blast, they drink a bottle of wine and that's that. It'll be fine." They talked about Chernobyl like it was an accident, an ordinary accident. What if I declared then that people shouldn't go outside? They would have said: "You want to disrupt May Day?" It was a political matter. They did have asked for my party card! Here's something that happened, I think, it wasn't just a story. The chairman of the Government Commission, Scherbin, comes to the plant in the first days after the explosion and demands that they take him to the reactor. They say, no, there is chunks of graphite, insane radiation, high temperature, the laws of physics, you can't go. "What laws of physics! I need to see everything with my own eyes. I need to give a report tonight to the politburo." It was the military way of dealing with things. They didn't know any other way. They didn't understand it that there really is such a thing as physics. There is a chain reaction. And no orders or government resolutions can change that chain reaction. The world is built on physics, not on the ideas of Marx. But if I say that then? Tried to call off the May Day Parade? In the papers they write that the people were out in the street while we were in underground bunkers? I stood on the tribune for 2 hours in that sun, without a hat, without a raincoat. And on May 9th the Day of Victory, I walked with a veterans. They played the harmonica, people danced, drank. We we're all part of that system. We believed! We believed in the high ideals, in victory! We will defeat Chernobyl! We read about the heroic battle to put down the reactor that had gotten out from under man's control. A Russian without a high ideal? Without a great dream? That's also scary.