The Legacy of a Citizen Scientist

An International Legacy

August 19, 1987

Mikhail S. Gorbachev
Secretary General of the USSR
The Kremlin
Moscow, USSR

Dear Secretary General Gorbachev:

American and Soviet media alike have given strong, public voice to your new policy of glasnost. In the spirit of openness which you seek to foster, I have taken the liberty of sending this appeal to you on behalf of my colleague, Igor Uspensky of Moscow.

Professor Uspensky and his wife, Inna, are both entomologists of considerable reputation among fellow biologists. They seek to emigrate to Israel with their son and Igor's elderly and infirm mother. They have been refused emigration permission because Soviet officials allege that Inna's brother had access to secret information.

Even if true, such allegations are insufficient cause to deny the Uspenskys' request, and contradict both Soviet and international standards protecting the individual's right to freedom of movement.

For nearly seven years, since the Uspenskys were first refused emigration permission, their colleagues from many countries and many fields of science have appealed for their release. All of those appeals have remained unanswered.

I ask you, Secretary General Gorbachev, to intervene on behalf of the Uspensky family and to permit them to leave for Israel, as they desire. I rely on your sense of humanity, justice and kindness to permit these simple people to live where they wish.

Together with many other Americans, scientists and persons in many other walks of life, who wish to believe that your expressions of openness are coupled with a clear sense of justice, I urge your prompt, affirmative response to this appeal.

Let the Uspenskys leave.



Christian B. Anfinsen,
PHD Department of Biology,
Johns Hopkins University Nobel Laureate, 1972