Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from February, 2009
Georgia-Russia: Information War
Writing for the Frontline Club blog, Al Jazeera's Matthew Collin comments on a new report by the Committee to Protect Journalists which criticizes both Russia and Georgia of exerting control over the media. In particular, the blog says that coverage of the August war over South Ossetia in both countries...
Georgia: Eurovision Controversy
Following its recent war with Russia, Georgia had initially planned to boycott this year's Eurovision Song Contest to be staged in Moscow, but later changed its mind. However, if reversing that decision might have initially seemed an attempt to repair damaged relations, yesterday's national song contest proved otherwise. Eurovision bloggers react.
Russia: “Poverty” Photos
LJ user kunstkamera (RUS) posts photos of “poverty in Russia” – and portraits of people posing next to their most expensive possessions.
Ukraine: Obama's and NATO Membership
Ukrainiana notes that Obama seems to no longer support “NATO track for Ukraine” – and posts this comment: “If the Obama administration opts for a ‘Chicken Kiev’ foreign policy, it's not just Ukraine that may get fried.”
Ukraine: The Khanenko Museum
The Uncataloged Museum writes about the Khanenko Museum in Kyiv.
Slovenia: Croatia's NATO Entry
Sleeping With Pengovsky writes about Slovenia's stance on Croatia's NATO entry.
Ukraine: Giving the Mayor Away For Free
LJ user induktor‘s post (RUS) in the Ukrainian “Will Give Away For Free” LJ community (otdam_darom_ua) has generated three pages of comments: the blogger is giving away Kyiv's mayor Leonid Chernovetsky. (More on Chernovetsky and his policies – at Ukrainiana.)
Kosovo: First Anniversary of Independence
Cafe Turco congratulates Kosovo on the first anniversary of independence.
Ukraine: Notes on the Crisis
Greetings from Kyiv posts some observations about the crisis: “I see an increase of elderly people begging and wandering the streets with bags of their belongings.”
Serbia: The Parliament
Belgraded describes how the Serbian parliament has been working this past month: “It all started when the national TV said that it won’t broadcast the sessions because they had to broadcast live tennis and handball tournament instead. MPs said they won’t work unless everyone in Serbia can follow what they’re...
Russia: Valentine's Day Politics
Window on Eurasia writes: “Like the Russian Orthodox Church, politically active young Russians increasingly view Valentine’s Day as something alien to their country’s national traditions and refuse to have anything to do with it, yet another measure of the extent to which Russians are turning away from many things they...
Former Soviet Union: The Legacy of Afghanistan
Window on Eurasia writes that across the former Soviet Union, “a debate is raging between those who believe the Soviet intervention [in Afghanistan] led to the demise of the Soviet Union and those who are convinced that the decision to withdraw [20 years ago] had precisely that effect.”
Russia, EU: “Policy-Media Interaction” and Blogging
Vilhelm Konnander posts his reflections on Russia-focused blogging and “policy-media interaction”: “So, by the end of the day, there is little room for deviance as the public policy-media discourse evolves. When one, to the contrary, gets one's message across, there is no saying how it will be processed by its...
Russia: Russian National Library
Eagle and the Bear writes about what it's like to be doing research at the Russian National Library in St. Petersburg: “The security at the library is as tight as a supermax prison, the rules for visiting are just as strict, and the staff is about as friendly as a...
Poland: Warsaw's New Bridge
20 east writes about the beginning of the construction of a new bridge in Warsaw, whose expected completion date is “a few months before Euro 2012.”
Hungary: Attitudes Toward Gypsies
Hungarian Spectrum writes that “it seems that anti-Gypsy prejudice is at least three hundred years old” in Hungary.
Hungary: MTI's 1989 and 1956 News Items Online
Hungarian Spectrum writes that Hungarian news agency MTI has made all its 1989 and 1956 news items available online: “As someone who with great difficulty and and at great expense (admittedly underwritten by grant money) tried to collect news items from 1919-1921 I can really appreciate how technology has freed...
Estonia: “Consolidation” of Tallinn
AnTyx writes about Tallinn mayor's campaign to get rid of the city's boroughs: “Ostensibly this is beneficial to the mayor's Centrist Party, and should allow them to keep control of the city, as well as give them a boost in other elections.”
Bulgaria: IHT's Coverage of Corruption
Veni Markovski criticizes the International Herald Tribune's coverage of corruption in Bulgaria.
Afghanistan: “Copyright on God’s Words”
Amila Bosnae reacts to the news of a death sentence given to two Afghans who “translated the Quran into one of their country’s languages.”
Belarus: Feb. 14 Peaceful Protest
Belarusan American Blog writes about the dispersal of the Feb. 14 peaceful protest in Minsk.