Petya Yakolev (1987: Bombs Over Kabul)
Petya Yakolev (October 12, 1933 - February 15, 1988) was a former Soviet official and successor to Mikhail Gorbachev during the 1987 Soviet missile campaign and overthrow. Originally a personal servant to Leonid Brehznev from 1970 to 1982 (Brehznev's death) Yakolev was deeply maddened by Gorbachev's reforming policies, believing Gorbachev to be 'tearing apart' the Soviet Union.
Early life and career
Petya Yakolev was born on October 12, 1933 to a wealthy St. Petersburg family. Growing up under the shadow of Joesph Stalin, he was inspired by his father, a strong Marxist-Leninist, to enter politics come the acceptable age.
In 1963 he moved to Moscow and became immersed in the Soviet culture, meeting Nikita Khrushchev and discussing intra-continental relations with other strong European countries.
Over the next six years Yakolev advanced up the relationship ladder with many of the Union's top officials, including Anastas Mikoyan, Nikolai Podgorny, Andrei Kirilenko and Mikhail Suslov.
After the 1969 attempt on Brehznev's life, Yakolev became one of his many personal servants. For twelve years, Yakolev worked for Brehznev and became mentally fixated on Brehznev's ideals and political stature. When Brehznev passed away in 1982, Yakolev was devastated. Come 1985, when Gorbachev stepped up to the plate, Yakolev was determined to bring him down.
In early August, 1987, Yakolev formed a small group of individuals, which he dubbed the 'Brezhnev Group', and hired four men to break into Gorbachev's office and demand his compliance. On August 27, the four men forced Gorbachev at gunpoint to write an order to launch missiles into Kabul, Afghanistan. In addition, he later coordinated attacks on Kandahar, Herat, and Mazar-i-Sharif.
Over a period of about six months, the brutal campaign had cost Yakolev thousands of dollars and troops. After fleeing from an exploding facility in an APC on February 15, 1988, the APC was hit by a rogue rocket-propelled grenade and flipped over. Yakolev was seriously injured in the crash.
On the verge of death, he was discovered by a group of Green Berets and executed. According to legend, his last lines were, "I'll be seeing Leonid in a few moments."
Gorbachev returned as the leader of the Soviet Union, but the Union later dissolved in October 1990, thus making Yakolev's efforts futile.