Чернобыль

This is Pripyat.

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It was built in 1970 as the model Russian town, meant to show the success of Soviet Communism to the world. Its residents were well-off, well-educated, and young (the average age was only 26). They never faced the supply-shortages that other subjects of the Soviet Empire often encountered, and in fact, their greatest challenge was getting their kids into the best Kindergarten.

On the 26th of April, 1986, Pripyat had a population of nearly 50,000 people. On April 27, 1986, the Soviet Union ordered every one of them to evacuate. They were told to take money, their identity papers, and enough food and clothes to last them three days. They were told the evacuation would be a temporary measure. They were told that they would be able to go home by the end of the week. They never returned, and the name of Pripyat has faded into obscurity. In fact, I’d be willing to bet that you have never heard of Pripyat.

You know it by a different name.

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Chernobyl.

To be continued…

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