June 5th, 2008 5:33 pm | by HANK STERN News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, Politics

If the Shoe Fits...Or Did Nikita Khrushchev Really Pound His At the UN?


So here's a tale from last night's Portland appearance by Sergei Khrushchev, and it has to do with one of the most iconic images of the Cold War: Khrushchev's father, then-Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev, supposedly pounding his shoe at the United Nations and saying, "We will bury you."

Son Sergei Khrushchev slyly asked the Portland audience how many of them remember this incident, setting off a ripple of nodding heads. Then he said it never happened that way. He said the incidents were separate and overblown by Western media as examples of propaganda designed to demonize his father.

The short version of the son's tale told last night is that his father's shoe was off because a journalist had stepped on it and that his father was in part too proud—and in part too heavy—to slip it back on in public. Sergei Khrushchev says his dad then gently tapped the shoe at the UN to be recognized to speak. As for the "We will bury you" remark, that came at a completely separate event, as recounted here.

I don't know if I entirely believe his account of the shoe pounding, which he delivered in good humor and with a glint in his eye. But it turns out there are multiple versions of these stories such as here and here.
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