Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from December, 2007
Poland: Organ Donation
The beatroot writes about Polish boxing and kickboxing champion who donated one of his kidneys to his sick baby daughter: “The case has highlighted the lack of donors in Poland, though the country has one of the lowest family refusal rates in the EU – where relatives block the removal...
Lituanica cites the results of a survey on religious views of the Lithuanians.
The Baltics: “Borderlands (V)”
There's something to grieve and much to celebrate when the Baltic states join the Schengen, writes Marginalia.
Latvia, Estonia: Valka and Valga
Valka is in Latvia, Valga – in Estonia. Until 1920, they used to be one town, Walk. “The Latvian side faces a back door of an Estonian supermarket.” But, as All About Latvia reports, “town officials from both sides plan to take [the metal fence] down altogether to allow pedestrians...
Latvia, Estonia: Schengen
All About Latvia celebrated the Schengen expansion at what used to be a Latvian-Estonian border post.
Belarus, Russia: $1.5-Billion Loan
TOL's Belarus writes about the possible reasons behind Russia's $1.5-billion loan to Belarus.
Russia: “(Chimerical) Stability”
Streetwise Professor criticizes Time Magazine's coverage of Putin's Russia: “The touting of the (chimerical) stability of Russia under Putin is another example of the superficiality that passes for incisive journalism.”
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: Yanukovych Privatizes State Residence
Ukrainiana translates a video in which Victor Yanukovych is threatening to sue a journalist for questions on murky privatization deal.
Russia: Frozen Gas, No Diesel on Sakhalin
White Sun of the Desert discovers that no gas station in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk is selling gas “before lunchtime” – because it is frozen until then.
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.
Pestiside.hu reports on the Hungarian firecrackers and fireworks laws.
Pestcentric and Pestiside.hu write on the parking customs and habits in Budapest.
Czech Republic: Penal Code
The Czech Daily Word reports on the changes in the Czech penal code.
Czech Republic: Schengen Expansion
The Czech Daily Word writes about a few subtle changes that the Schengen expansion is likely to bring about.
Czech Republic: Vaclav Klaus Refuses to Debate
“President Vaclav Klaus refused to meet in a televised debate with his only opponent for the 2008 elections – Jan Svejnar,” the Czech Daily Word reports.
Russia: Putinism; Putin's Fortune
Sean's Russia Blog writes about “Putinism” and Putin's alleged personal wealth.
Russia: Dostoyevsky's Mock Execution Anniversary
ExecutedToday.com writes about Fyodor Dostoyevsky's mock execution of 1849.
Russia: Christmas Tree Decorations
Here is a holiday season story that's got very little of the traditional holiday spirit in it. Posted by LJ user souffrante and accompanied by Valeriy Leushev's photos, it's as much about Russian bloggers' childhood memories as it is about globalization, consumer nationalism, bad management, labor rights and the power of blogging.