Soviet Union


The Strange, Brutal Connection Between Russian Prison Tats and Playing Cards

"Tea or cigarettes might be wagered, but also fingers, ears, eyes, or even the lives of other inmates—or the life of the player himself."
Alex Norcia
Russian Road Trip

Road-Tripping to One of the Most Radioactive Places on Earth

VICE's Abdullah Saeed, Danielle Neftin, and Dina Rayzman venture through Russia and into Kazakhstan to visit the "Polygon," the Soviet Union's primary nuclear test site.
VICE Staff

How Howard Hughes Helped the CIA Try to Steal a Russian Nuclear Sub

The expensive attempt was largely a mechanical failure, but it was still one of the stranger covert ops in US history.
Seth Ferranti

Photos from Transnistria, the Country That Doesn't Exist

The United Nations may not formally recognize the country's independence, but 500,000 Transnistrians deserve to be seen.
Adina Florea

What It Was Like to Work at a Russian Gulag

Ivan Chistyakov was living a modern life in the city, working as an engineer and checking out plays and movies. Then he got shipped off to Siberia.
Seth Ferranti

My Father, the Cold War Spy

Eva Dillon's memoir, 'Spies in the Family,' reveals the untold personal side to the American and Soviet spies who helped avert nuclear war.
Mary von Aue

How the CIA Infiltrated the World's Literature

The new book, Finks, reveals how great writers such as Baldwin, Márquez, and Hemingway became soldiers in America's cultural Cold War.
Mary von Aue

Photos of the Georgian Families Living Inside an Abandoned Military Hospital

25 years after the fall of the Soviet Union, many Georgians are struggling to survive in the new economy. In the outskirts of the capital, Tbilisi, over 150 families are forced by necessity to live in an abandoned military hospital.
Jake Borden

'Vania Versus Radioactive Hellrats,' Today's Comic by Pedro d'Apremont and Gabriel Góes

Vania and friends head to the countryside to hunt radioactive hellrats in exchange for discount coupons in this epic seven-page comic. They also dance in a circle around a boombox together, as is their fashion.
Pedro d'Apremont and Gabriel Góes
The Crown and Sceptre Issue

Mountain Black: Photos from the Former Yugoslavia

Irina Rozovsky captures the disconcerting beauty of a nation that no longer exists.
Irina Rozovsky

Among the Tarkovsky Fanatics at an Underground Retrospective in Berlin

Since 1985, a literally underground movie theater has hosted an annual summer retrospective of the legendary Soviet auteur's time-bending films.
Ben Mauk

What Would Cities Look Like without Greedy Landlords and Property Development Sharks?

We interviewed Owen Hatherley, author of a book about what happens to architecture when you get rid of capitalists and real estate agents.
Philip Kleinfeld