Svetlana came from a dissident Jewish family opposed to Soviet rule in Latvia. Her parents survived World War 2, but during the Stalin era two members of her family were held in the Gulags. The family never resigned themselves to Latvia's occupation by the Soviet Union in 1940.
It was almost impossible to legally leave the Soviet Union, however, in 1971 the first opportunities for "Jewish" emigration appeared, and Svetlana, then aged 12 and her family left legally.
At the age of 16, she is staying with her Uncle in London when she comes across Bush House, the home of the BBC Russian Service.
Svetlana manages to get a job there and begins to get promoted. She meets Georgi Markov who is assassinated by Bulgarian Security Services on Waterloo Bridge in London and later she is introduced to Oleg, the Chief Editor of the Russian Service of Radio Liberty, a CIA-financed station beaming Western propaganda into the Soviet Union. This meeting has a profound effect on her life…
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