US writer and scholar on Russia, Suzanne Massie, who served as an adviser to President Ronald Reagan, has received the medal of the Russian Foreign Ministry “For Contribution to International Cooperation.”
The medal, signed by Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, was presented to Massie on Tuesday at the Foreign Ministry Representation in St. Petersburg.
“If Lavrov was there, I would kiss him on the cheek. The words he used to describe the medal ‘for contribution to international cooperation’ characterizes my activity best of all,” Massie commented to Sputnik on her receiving the award.
Massie also told that the Presidential Library in St. Petersburg should be the place where her archive will be kept. Her collection includes Reagan’s personal letters, her correspondence with US President Bill Clinton, Vice President Albert Gore and other political and other personalities, including writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn and choreographer George Balanchine. The correspondence has never been made public and is being published for the first time.
Also included among the collection are two letters from Reagan, the first of which was sent to her after the funeral of the leader of the Soviet Union Yuri Andropov.
“I waited to answer your letter until after your return from the Soviet Union. In the meantime, a great change occurred there. I dare to hope there might be a better chance for communication with the new leadership,” Reagan said.
As reminded, Massie advised Reagan on Russia from 1984-1988 and played a significant role in the final years of the Cold War. She taught the president the Russian proverb, “Trust, but verify,” which Reagan famously used during the nuclear disarmament talks with the Soviet Union.