Raya Shulman

One of the most tragic cases is that of RAYA SHULMAN. In February, 1925, she was arrested as a participant in the memorial meeting held in Leningrad on the anniversary of the death of Peter Kropotkin. Administratively, without hearing or trial, she was sent away to Upper-Uralsk and there imprisoned in the polit-isolator.

The following year, in 1926, there took place fearful beatings and physical tortures of the Upper-Uralsk political prisoners. Raya Shulman was one of the victims, and before long she began to show symptoms of mental aberration.

The efforts of her well-connected relatives succeeded in having Raya transferred for treatment in a Moscow hospital the prisoner remaining under guard of the G. P. U. But before Raya completely recovered, she was again returned to prison.

In May, 1929, her term being completed, Raya Shulman, instead of being liberated, was doomed to exile in the Kansk District, Siberia, and thence she was transferred, in March 1930 to Narim.

The method of frequent changes of prisons and places of exile, involving different environment and climatic conditions, served to aggravate the condition of Raya Shulman. Moreover, she took seriously ill and was almost paralyzed by acute rheumatism.

Her only hope was that, at the expiration of her exile term, she might be placed by her relatives in the care of proper physicians. She patiently waited for that day, but when her official “release” time came, she was again condemned to exile in Orel; where medical attention and treatment are entirely excluded.

This new order of the G. P. U. against Raya Shulman is virtually equivalent to a sentence of death. Raya is on the point of entire physical and mental collapse. The only chance of saving her life is in enabling her to come to Moscow for serious medical treatment. But the G. P. U. has refused the demand.

(Ibid). [Bulletin of the Relief Fund… April 1932]

From: The guillotine at work p598.