Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from May, 2011
CEE Bankwatch Network campaign against EBRD practices
The CEE Bankwatch Network, an NGO monitoring activities of international financial institutions, has just released a video sharply criticizing the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development's 20th anniversary of activities in former Soviet Bloc countries, and its intentions to extend to north Africa. “The EBRD has in fact a poor...
Russia: “My Perestroika”
Dina Fainberg of The Dustbin of History writes about My Perestroika – “a lovely documentary by an American film-maker [Robin Hessman] about how four classmates were affected by the changes in Russia from Brezhnev to Putin” – and the Q&A that followed the film's screening in London.
Russia: State Duma Whistleblower Intern's Case
Sublime Oblivion writes about the case of Evgeny Starshov, who was tweeting and blogging about his internship at the Russian State Duma until he got fired for it.
Abkhazia: Sergei Bagapsh Dies
In Moscow's Shadows and Foreign Policy Association's Russia blog write about the implications of the death of Sergei Bagapsh, the president of the Republic of Abkhazia, on May 29.
Poland: The Year of Anniversaries
Polandian posts a list of companies celebrating anniversaries of their presence in Poland in 2011.
Serbia: Mladic Arrest Update
Bill Kralovec of Bill's Blog and Kirk Johnson of Americans for Bosnia share thoughts on the arrest of Ratko Mladic; YakimaGulagLiteraryGazett is posting links to English-language media stories on the issue.
Russia: OBEY Giant Poster Wonders ‘Who Set Up Strauss-Kahn?’
LJ-user groupper posts [ru] pictures of an illegal poster with OBEY Giant and a question in French and Russian: “Who set up Strauss-Kahn?” The poster hanging in front of the French diplomatic mission building in Saint-Petersburg, raises a conspiracy theory question, wherever the #DSK scandal was a deliberate removal of...
Russia: Famous Sci-Fi Writer's Blog Removed for ‘Anti-Semitism’
Following President Medvedev's speech on extremism in the Russian Internet, security services began a campaign against online neo-Nazis and vocal nationalists. On May 28, 2011, the campaign against racial and religious extremism found an unusual enemy – Leonid Kaganov, one of Russia's oldest bloggers, a poet, and a science fiction writer.
Russia: Moscow Pride 2011
This year's Moscow Gay Pride event ended in clashes almost as soon as it began, at least 18 gay rights activists and 14 of their opponents are reported to have been arrested, and a journalist who had blogged about her reasons for attending the rally ended hospitalized with a concussion.
Germany, Ukraine: Implications of the Demjanjuk Ruling
Alexander J. Motyl writes at Ukraine's Orange Blues/World Affairs about the implications of the May 12 sentencing of John Demjanjuk “for being an accessory to the murder of 28,060 Jews in the Nazi concentration camp in Sobibor, in occupied Poland.”
Hungary: Corruption On the Rise
Hungarian Spectrum writes about corruption in Hungary: “A few days ago Ernst & Young made public its latest survey on corruption in Europe and came up with the startling result that Hungary is the most corrupt country within the European Union. It can be compared only to Russia.”
Ukraine: Proposal to Declare Crimean Tatar Deportation “Genocide”
Window on Eurasia reports on the Ukrainian Peoples Party's proposal to declare the 1944 deportation of the Crimean Tatars by Stalin “an act of genocide and a crime against humanity.”
Russia: Peaceful Religious Co-Existence in Tatarstan
At OpenDemocracy.net, Oleg Pavlov writes about Jadidism, “an Islamic movement common among the Muslims in the Volga and Urals region,” and peaceful religious co-existence in Tatarstan.
Belarus: Economic Crisis
Nils van der Vegte of RussiaWatchers reports on the economic crisis in Belarus.
Serbia: More Reactions to the Arrest of Ratko Mladic
Richard Byrne of Balkans via Bohemia and Borut Peterlin react to the news of the arrest of Ratko Mladic, the Bosnian Serb general wanted for war crimes, including the Srebrenica massacre. Sladjana Lazic of A Slice Of Serbian Politics and Viktor Marković (@Belgrade) report [en, sr] on small-scale protests in...
Russia: Politicalized literature
Ernst Krenkel of Backyard Safari takes a closer look at [GER] Vladimir Sorokin's The Day of the Opritchniks and Nathan Dubovitsky's Near Zero and asks to what extent Russian literature is politicalized.
Serbia: Arrest of Ratko Mladic
Ratko Mladic, former Bosnian Serb military leader was arrested today by police in Serbia, the country's president, Boris Tadic, confirmed on national television. General Mladic has been on the run since 1995 facing charges of genocide for his role as Bosnian Serb military commander during the 1992-95 civil war in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Russia: Reporters’ Open Letter Highlights TV Censorship Concerns
Censorship on the majority of Russian television channels has been around forever, but a recent open letter by REN TV reporters showed how even remaining small islands of media freedom could get washed away.
Russia: Renewed Anger Over Bureaucratic Traffic Bypasses
A fiery incident on a Moscow highway has reignited the debate on Russian officials' use of “special signals” that allow bureaucrats to move quickly through traffic. Ashley Cleek explores the issue.
Hungary: Changing the memory of Holocaust
Eva Balogh of Hungarian Spectrum reports on how the government of Hungary has sacked the director of the country's Holocaust Memorial Center and replaced him with one more compatible with the views of the current regime.
Estonia: Between East and West
Giustino of Itching for Eestimaa reflects upon Estonia's changing politico-cultural identity against the backdrop of the 2011 Lennart Meri conference.