1983: American Girl Samantha Smith Invited to Visit the USSR

1983: American Girl Samantha Smith Invited to Visit the USSR
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 26 April 1983
  • She really went to the USSR, visited Moscow and Leningrad, and stayed at Artek camp, the most prestigious Soviet pioneer camp, built on the Crimean peninsula.

Soviet leader Yuri Andropov invited American girl Samantha Smith to visit the USSR on this day in 1983.

It was his response to a letter which the girl had sent him. She was only ten years old at the time, and sent him a letter because she was concerned about the possibility of an outbreak of world nuclear war.

Samantha Smith asked the Secretary General of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of USSR: “Are you going to vote to have a war or not?” Also, she asked him why he wanted to conquer the world or at least their country (the USA).

The Soviet newspaper Pravda published her letter. On this day, after a while, the General Secretary Andropov answered the girl and sent a letter to the United States.

He said that people in the Soviet Union were trying to do everything to avoid war on the Earth. Andropov said: “Soviet people well know what a terrible thing war is.“ He said that Nazi Germany had attacked their country, and that the Soviets had been in alliance with the United States.

At the end of his letter, Andropov invited Samantha Smith to visit the USSR, and proposed her to stay at Artek (a children’s camp on the Black Sea Coast) during the upcoming summer, and to experience the peacefulness and friendliness of the Soviets.

Samantha became a sort of a world celebrity. She died just two years later. She was traveling with his father when their plane crashed. All eight plane passengers died. She was only 13 years old.

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