"In spite of my criticisms of Gorbachev," said Fyodor Burlatsky, a one-time Central Committee speech writer who later became a reformer, "Gorbachev has learned some lessons. He has a future."
As for the Soviet Union, he said, it also has a future, but only as a very loose economic federation, like the European Common Market.
Meanwhile, the shock waves touched off by the coup continued to strike.
Anatoly Lukyanov, Mr. Gorbachev's old law school classmate, resigned as chairman of the parliament after accusations that he was ideologist behind the coup.
And there was a third suicide. Nikolai Kruchina, the Communist Party administrator in charge of party property, reportedly jumped out the window of his seventh-floor apartment, according to the KGB.
Early in the day, as the Supreme Soviet convened, several
members said it was crucial that they restore authority by their behavior -- by showing the public that they could act responsibly in the public's behalf.
But late last night they adjourned without taking any specific action. They reconvene today.