Anatoly and Avital
in their Jerusalem
'apartment after his
arrival in February.
Special to The Jewish News
ix weeks before his release
from a Soviet prison last
February, Anatoly Shcharan-
sky was transferred to a hospital
where he was "fattened up" with in-
fusions of calories and proteins.
The prisoner was elated: clearly,
this clinically enriched diet was in an-
ticipation of another rare, brief
meeting with his mother.
In fact, he was being "packaged for
export." Home cooking has done the
Malnourished at the start of 1986,
Anatoly (Natan) Shcharanksy is en-
ding the year on a diet. "Avital tells
me I am getting too fat," he says,
holding out a plate of cookies but
dutifully rejecting one himself.
"You see," he laughs, "freedom has
its own limitations. For years I didn't
have to worry about losing weight."
Sitting in his office — a sparsely
furnished rented apartment in the
Jerusalem suburb of Kiryat Moshe —
Shcharansky is not as concerned by
this act of self-denial as he is amazed
by the extraordinary change in his
It is not easy to appreciate freedom
consciously when you are surround-
ed by it. But, typically, Anatoly
Shcharansky has developed a neat
trick for catching himself when he
starts taking small, everyday pleas-
ures for granted: he simply remem-
bers where he was a year ago.
"Then I realize again what an im-
possible thing has happened," he
Less than a year ago — ten months
ago, in fact — Shcharansky was into