On june 30, 1989, at around one-thirty in the afternoon, a young woman made an emotional descent from the uneven steps of a Soviet passenger airliner towards a crowd of well-wishers who had gathered together to welcome her to Pyŏngyang, North Korea. Rising just above them, in bold neon letters, an anachronistic sign, which served as a reception banner of sorts, read:

Let the world's youth and students unite firmly under the banner of anti-imperialist solidarity, peace and friendship.

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