Skip to main content
  1. Life
  2. Religion & Spirituality
  3. Western Religions

Newly released letter describes AK-47 inventor's agnuish over deaths

See also

Mikhail Kalashnikov, inventor of the AK-47 assault rifle, wrote a letter to the Head of the Russian Orthodox Church before his death describing the guilt he felt as a Christian for those his invention killed.

According to today’s Izvestia, a Kremlin newspaper, Kalashnikov, who died December 23, 2013, wrote a heartfelt letter to the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church in April. The typed letter was on Kalashnikov's personal stationary and was signed by Mr. Kalashnikov own hand as "a slave of God, the designer Mikhail Kalashnikov''.

“If my rifle took lives, does it mean that I, Mikhail Kalashnikov, aged 93, a peasant woman’s son, an Orthodox Christian in faith, is guilty of those people’s deaths, even if they were enemies?”

The letter also reflects on major events in Kalashnikov’s life and philosophical questions about being human. Kalashnikov, who was baptized as a child, lived most of his life as an atheist. At the age of 91 he turned to God.

“Good and evil coexist side by side, fighting and, worst of all, they resign themselves to each other in the hearts of people – that is what I have come to at the end of this earthly life. It’s similar to the kind of perpetual motion I wanted to invent in my younger years. Light and shadow, good and evil - two opposites of a whole cannot exist without each other? And is the Almighty and all arranged? And humanity languishes forever in a ratio? ", laments the designer.

Kalashnikov, whose funeral was attended by President Vladimir Putin, came up with the rifle design after experiencing the Red Army's severe lack of weapons during World War II.

Today the AK-47 is manufactured unlicensed worldwide and has become the standard of armed movements.



  • Dan Savage
    Dan Savage cares about LGBT youth, bullying and saving lives
    Today's Buzz
  • Raku
    Teachers and students can use this summer to learn a new skill
    15 Photos
  • Beach body
    Fitness: Earn your beach body badge with bootcamp classes
    10 Photos
  • Greek wine
    Unwind with these delicious wines: The thrilling wines of Greece
    7 Photos
  • Mandy Moore
    Exclusive interview with Celebrity Mandy Moore concerning animal activism
    5 Photos
  • Educational family vacations
    Find out how to take an educational family vacation that doesn't break the bank
    9 Photos

Related Videos:

  • Any afternoon will do
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518014543" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>
  • Verne & Florence Stemmons
    <div class="video-info" data-id="518189083" data-param-name="playList" data-provider="5min" data-url=""></div>
  • Review of the movie 'Persecuted'
    <iframe width="600" height="337" src="//;VQ=HD720&amp;allowfullscreen=true&amp;autoplay=1"></iframe>