Baltics

At a joint press conference with leaders of the Baltic states, President Donald Trump ordered the president of Latvia not to pick a reporter from the United States, once again calling them “fake news.”
My recent trip to Moscow and meetings with experts there suggest that Ukraine, which is both historically and geographically
When I revisited Vietnam in recent years, after reporting from the region during the 1970s, I noted how its rulers had won their wars against France and the United States only to lose out on the economic front, as Communism put them a quarter century behind the roaring "tigers" of East Asia. Now they are struggling to catch up by offering their cheap labor to international investors.
Tunes, traditions, styles, perspectives -- one might think of us as the carriers of a DNA that can both stubbornly endure and spontaneously mutate as we meet other musicians and enter new realms.
Trump, NATO and the Baltics - heed the hard-earned lessons. By: Joergen Oerstroem Moeller. For the third time since 1945
Not fast enough, some experts say, even as Vladimir Putin probes its defenses.
NATO expansion was considered a great success. But now the alliance realizes that it is obligated to war against nuclear-armed Russia on behalf of three essentially indefensible countries.
What would Russia gain from attacking the Baltics? A recalcitrant, majority non-ethnic Russian population. A possible temporary nationalist surge at home. A likely short-lived victory over the West. The costs would be far greater.
Much is said these days about the mismatch of missions and resources for the military. Indeed, the chants of neoconservatives on Capitol Hill have gotten quite loud: more military spending, more personnel, more weapons.
Montenegro neither threatens nor is threatened by anyone. Adding it to NATO is like accumulating Facebook Friends. They do little more than allow preening Washington officials to wander the globe gloating how popular the U.S. is.
This is a story of Latvia, but with a lesson beyond. People with power in the energy sector meet people with political power, and the character of Latvia as a reliable Western partner, one that is resilient to Russia's carrots and sticks, is tested mightily.
Only a negotiated settlement, no matter how unsatisfying, offers the possibility of a stable resolution of the ongoing conflict. Indeed, the alternative may be the collapse of the Ukrainian state and long-term confrontation between the West and Russia, at great cost to all sides.
Germany's position as Europe's leading economic and political power put Chancellor Merkel in an awkward position vis-a-vis how to address Vladimir Putin's extra-territorial activities.
The mayor of the Latvian capital city Riga, Nil Ushakov, stated yesterday in Moscow that for Latvia, "the best thing possible right now is President Vladimir Putin." His presence in Moscow and his comments about Putin illustrate how far the views of many Latvians diverge from the Western mainstream on relations between Russia and the West.
This is no Putin victory, and no Obama loss. It is a brazen Russian reassertion of interests. But being back in the USSR is of dubious benefit and no reward.
The second week of our 10,000 mile road trip across the Eurasian continent marked a watershed moment -- we had officially exited the nations commonly defined as "Western European," and entered the Baltic countries, a region that was new and exciting for all of us.
First things first: oh, you world travelers, for pleasure or for work, never, ever fly Baltic Airlines.
Many luxury travelers are skeptical about taking cruise vacations. They associate cruises with mediocre, calorific buffet food; cramped, ill-designed cabins; hoards of people with lines at every turn; not being able to get off the beaten path; and being nickeled and dimed for extras. If you are cruise avoidant, a voyage on the Crystal Symphony will dispel any such misgivings.
No one knows for certain how the practice of putting down crosses started, but in more recent times it has come to symbolize the enduring committment of Lithuanians to their country and staunchly Catholic identity.