Stories about History from December, 2007
Central & Eastern Europe: Populism?
Dr. Sean's Blog reviews texts on populism in Central and Eastern Europe that have appeared in the special issue of Journal of Democracy: “The irony is that this comes just as the ‘populist backlash’ seems to be waning.”
Ukraine: Yulia Tymoshenko and Coal Miners
Yulia Tymoshenko returned as Ukraine's prime minister on Dec. 18. Five days later, she was in Donetsk region, visiting the site of Ukraine's worst coal mining accident, the troubled Zasyadko mine. While there, she declared: "We'll be working on it and will make it so that in our country both young people and children would want to become coal miners." Below is a discussion of Tymoshenko's promise that took place at Korrespondent.net, a Ukrainian news site.
Estonia: Mart Laar's “The Estonian Way”
Itching for Eestimaa writes about an Estonian politician's book on Estonian history.
Czech Republic: Schengen Expansion
The Czech Daily Word writes about a few subtle changes that the Schengen expansion is likely to bring about.
Russia: Putinism; Putin's Fortune
Sean's Russia Blog writes about “Putinism” and Putin's alleged personal wealth.
Bangladesh: The Musée Guimet affair
From January 2008 the Musée Guimet of France is holding an exhibition of the masterpieces of Ganges from the collections of the Bangladesh museums for the first time outside of Bangladesh. From the museum catalogue: “Bangladesh possesses an immensely important cultural heritage, this arising from the fact that the eastern...
Armenia: Burning Bridges
Archuk's blog comments on recent hearings in the Armenian National Assembly on relations with Turkey and considers that focusing on potential financial reparations does more harm than good in the quest for “historical justice.” The blogger remembers that even a famous Armenian freedom fighter killed during the Karabakh conflict concluded...
D.R. of Congo: The Batwa people
AfricaBeat on the Batwa from the Democratic Republic of Congo: “The Batwa people were traditionally hunter-gatherers. In Eastern Congo, they lived off what the forest provided, until prolonged warfare and the creation of national parks ended their way of life.”
Russia: Dostoyevsky's Mock Execution Anniversary
ExecutedToday.com writes about Fyodor Dostoyevsky's mock execution of 1849.
Russia: “Espionage Obsessed State”
James of Robert Amsterdam's blog posts a translation of a Russian article on “the social reality of an espionage obsessed state.” The article's last line is: “Having lost vigilance, Russia may not only not notice the beginning of a new cold war, but may even fail to notice its transition...
Russia: Robert Amsterdam's Alternative Person of the Year
Robert Amsterdam insists that “TIME’s choice is a great thing for Russia and her people, as we can all take a much closer look now at what is going on (and what’s going wrong) in this great nation.” He also picks his blog's own Person of the Year: The Russian...
Ukraine, Russia: On Tymoshenko, Yanukovych and Putin
Foreign Notes writes about Yulia Tymoshenko's TV address and Viktor Yanukovych's “shadow opposition government” – as well as Vladimir Putin's misrepresentation of Ukraine's Russophone population in his Time Magazine interview and a subsequent reaction of the head of Donetsk region, who “emphasized that the Russian-speaking population of his oblast, which...
Ukraine: PM Tymoshenko, Pro & Con
Kiev Blogger believes “Tymoshenko as PM is probably the worst thing that could happen to Ukraine at the moment”: “The only positive thing about it (and it's only positive from a very strategic point of view), is that Ukraine really does have real political competition, backed up by the competition...
Russia: “Nashi” and Feminism
Natalia Antonova writes about Nashi pro-Putin youth movement – and about feminism in the former Soviet Union: “So is there feminism in Russia today? Yes. Only in many instances, it doesn’t go by that name. And perhaps never will. Is there feminism among Nashi members? I don’t believe the members...
Serbia: Kosovo Roma
TOL's Romantic writes about about Kosovo's Roma and a new blog about this minority group.
Armenia: Another Blogger Outraged at Azerbaijan Event
Blogian weighs into the controversy that surrounded the opening of a Days of Azerbaijan funded by the British Embassy in Yerevan earlier this week. Supporting the action of those bloggers who protested the event in person, Simon says that such an event is unthinkable on the second anniversary of the...
Soviet History: The Red Terror
De Rebus Antiquis Et Novis writes about the history of Cheka and the Red Terror.
The Balkans: Fighting Genocide Deniers
Srebrenica Genocide Blog has two new posts up: on the atrocities of 1943, and on Darko Trifunovic, a “Srebrenica genocide denier” employed by the University of Belgrade's Faculty of Security Studies. In a comment, Alan Jakšić of Serbian Anarchist recommends that Daniel of Srebrenica Genocide Blog file a “formal complaint”...
The Balkans: A Blogroll, Sort Of
Balkan Anarchist posts a blogroll of sorts, listing all blogs (mostly Balkan, but not exclusively so) he has left comments at in 2007. Of special notice are Genocide in Bosnia, a blog by an exile from Srebrenica, and this discussion at Srebrenica Genocide Blog.
Syria: Hassan Al Quwatli RIP
Hassan al-Quwatli, the oldest son of Syrian President Shukri al-Quwatli [1943-1949, 1955-1958] has died in Saudi Arabia. Syria Comment has an obituary here.
The troubled pasts of Burkina Faso
The United Nations Development Programme recently released its 2007/2008 Human Development Index. Burkina Faso dropped from the world’s fourth poorest country to its second poorest. Burkina Mom found it sadly ironic that development indicators are falling while the government throws itself a huge party for National Day, replete with a huge parade and many festivities.