Source:BNS 1/23/17; news.err.ee
Jaak Juhansoo, a prominent figure of the Estonian émigré community and longtime president of the Estonian World Council, died on Jan. 13.
Juhansoo was born in Põltsamaa, Estonia on May 16, 1942. His family, together with Jaak's older brother Jaan, fled to Augsburg, Germany in escape from Soviet occupation. After a few years, they moved on to New York; Juhansoo was almost seven years old at the time.
After working for a couple of years on a farm on Edisto Island, S.C., the family moved to Minneapolis.
Following his graduation from the University of Minnesota, Juhansoo enlisted in the U.S. Army. After he was discharged in 1965, he worked in the electronics field and went on to establish his own business producing photo reproductions in metal, PRIMA Products, in the early 1970s.
Juhansoo was a longtime Estonian activist, contributing to Estonian liberation efforts by staging demonstrations, writing articles and giving interviews. He was presidnt and honorary member of the Boston Estonian Society, president and board member of the Baltic Society of New England, treasurer and board member of the Captive Nations Committee and longtime member of the Estonian American National Council (EANC). He also belonged to the Estonian World Council (ÜEKN) for three decades, serving as its president from 2007-2014 and treasurer thereafter.
The Estonian-American activist was given the Canadian-Estonian award for freedom fighting in 2003. He was also bestowed with Estonia's Order of the White Star, 4th Class, in 2007 and the EANC's award for distinguished service in 2014.
Juhansoo, who was buried in West Roxbury, Mass., is survived by wife Daina (Ule) Juhansoo, son Peeter and daughter Michele, as well as his first wife Sharon Juhansoo, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Jaak Juhansoo, kes suri 13. jaanuaril 2017, maeti 20. jaanuaril Gethsemane kalmistule West Roxbury’s, Massachusettsis, läti haudade keskele. Jaak ise soovis seda, plaanides oma matust juba augustis, kui arstid talle vaid paar päeva aega andsid. Ilmselt Jaagu tahtejõud käis arstide teadmistest üle, sest ta pidas vastu veel viis kuud. Peale selle, et Jaagu abikaasa Daina on lätlanna, oli Jaagul palju läti sõpru ja ta ütles, et lätlaste keskel on temal hea olla.
Jaagul oli üldse palju sõpru ja kolleege, mida oli näha rohkest osavõtust surnuvalvest ja tema matusetalitusest, mille pidas õp. Uudo Tari eesti ja inglise keeles. Kohal oli mitte ainult eestlasi, lätlasi ja leedulasi, vaid ka vabamüürlasi, päästearmeelasi ja teisi kaaslasi. Läti kirik Bostoni lähedal Brookline’is oli täis leinajaid. Talitust kaunistasid muusikaga Hando Nahkur ja Epp Karike-Jürima Sonin. Eestlaste järelhüüdjad kirikus olid sõbrad Alvar Soosaar, Marju Rink-Abel ja Bostoni Eesti Seltsi esimees Paul Attenmann.
Jaak Juhansoo sündis Põltsamaal 16. mail 1942, Olga ja Peeter Juhansoo perekonnas. Perekond koos vanema venna Jaaniga põgenes Nõukogude okupatsiooni eest Saksamaale Augsburgi, kust mõne aasta pärast liiguti edasi New Yorki, Jaak oli siis peaaegu 7-aastane. Jaak mäletas, et ta imetles päikesetõusul Vabadusesammast, mis sümboliseeris talle vabadust ja lootust.
Peale paari aastat tööd farmis Edisto saarel, Lõuna-Carolinas, kolis perekond Minneapolisse. Pärast Minnesota ülikooli lõpetamist astus Jaak sõjaväkke. Lahkunud sõjaväest 1965. a., kolis Jaak peatselt Waltham’isse, MA, kus ta töötas elektroonika alal, kuni ta 70ndate alguses asutas oma firma, PRIMA Products, tootes metallist kvaliteetseid reproduktsioone, tahvleid ja muud sarnast. See töö võimaldas Jaagul osaleda mitme ühiskonna töös ja üritustes, kuna ta ei olnud seotud kindlate kellaaegadega.
Ühiskond, mis oli kõige lähedasem Jaagule oli eestlus, ja siin oli ta aktiivne väga mitmel alal. Ta oli tõsine vabadusvõitleja ja kauaaegne eesti aktivist, organiseerides demonstratsioone, kirjutades artikleid ja andes intervjuusid, sihiga Eesti vabastada. Jaak oli Bostoni Eesti Seltsi esimees ja Seltsi auliige, New Englandi Balti Ühingu president ja juhatuse liige, Ikestatud Rahvaste Komitee laekur ja juhatuse liige ning kauaaegne Eesti Rahvuskomitee Ühendriikides (ERKÜ) Esinduskogu liige (1977-2014), valitud üheksasse Esinduskokku.
Laas Leivat kirjutas Eestlase Kesknõukogu Kanadas nimel:
Jaak, iseloomult võitleja, suutis mitte liikuda kergema vastupanu teed. Ta leidis positiivseid lahendusi. Ta suutis alati inimesi mõista ja leida neis head. Ta oli ootamatult avameelne ja sõbralikult otsekohene. Võltsid maneerid ja pinnalised emotsioonid olid talle võõrad. Nii enesekriitika kui ka nali enda arvel peegeldusid tema iseloomust. Ta ütles kord, et kuradile ta ei kõlba ja jumal pole temaga iialgi rahul.
Uute liikmesmaade liitumine ÜEKN-iga, täiskogu koosolekud ja avatud sümpoosiumid kodumaal, täisajaline ÜEKN-i esindaja Tallinnas, juhatuse koosolekute toimimine ülemaailmses ulatuses Interneti abil, [ka ESTOde koha leidmine], ning teised organisatoorsed ümberkorraldused rakendati Jaagu juhtimise perioodil. Jaak haaras väljakutsetest kinni ja pühendus määratud ülesannetele. Ta otsis positiivset lahendit ja tõrjus halba hea toetamise kaudu.”
Jaak oli avameelne ja ülimalt sõbralik inimene, kes teretas võõraid lahtiste kätega. Jaak tundus olevat suurem kui päriselt, osalt tema füüsilise välimuse tõttu, osalt tugeva iseloomu tõttu. Kui temaga rääkisid, võisid palju tema enda eluloost kuulda ja jutuajamine võttis vähemalt kaks korda kauem, kui oleks võinud arvata. Kuulsid täpselt, mida Jaak asjadest arvas koos anekdootidega, mis olid lisatud asja juurde. Jaagul oli uskumatult tugev tahtejõud ja enesekindlus.
Selle tõttu oli Jaagul palju sõpru. Kaastundeavaldusi on tulnud igalt ÜEKNi liikmesmaalt. Eesti valitsuse Rahvuskaaslaste programmi nõukogu nimel kirjutab Anne-Ly Reimaa:
ERKÜ tunnustas Jaagu pikaajalist tööd eesti ühiskonnas 2014. a. galal märkimisväärsete teenete auhinnaga. Talle omistati Eesti Vabariigi Valgetähe IV klassi orden 2007. a. ja Kanada-Eesti vabadusvõitluse teenetemärk 2003. a.
Peale abikaasa jäid Jaaku leinama poeg Peeter ja tütar Michelle Ryan. Meie hulgast on lahkunud armas sõber ja tulihingeline eestlane, keda ei saa unustada. Puhka rahus, armas Jaak.
- Marju Rink-Abel, ERKÜ ja ÜEKNi esimees
Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand’s message to Estonian expatriates on the occasion of 25th Anniversary of the Restoration of Independence of Estonia /Välisminister Marina Kaljuranna tervitus väliseestlastele Eesti Vabariigi taasiseseisvumise 25. aastapäeval
20. August 2016 - 9:19
Today we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the restoration of the Republic of Estonia. Surely many of you remember the anxious days in August 1991. Today 25 years ago the Supreme Council of the Republic of Estonia functioning as a parliament adopted the Resolution on the national independence of Estonia that restored the independence of Estonia. Years of hard work and fighting for Estonia’s independence preceded 20 August both in occupied Estonia and in exile. Estonians in exile carried the legal continuity of the Republic of Estonia, explained what had happened to the Baltic states and the importance of non-recognition policy, distributed information on the situation in Estonia, preserved and developed the Estonian language, culture and civic society.
In his new year’s address in 1993 Lennart Meri said the following: “But the restoration of a state is not as simple as pressing a lamp button which will instantly overpour you with biblical light. A state is born like a baby - in labour and pains. Still, like a baby it is born of love and itself gives birth to love.” Many people forced to leave Estonia against their will and Estonians born abroad have contributed to rebuilding Estonia and to its development. Many of them have helped reconstruct the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Representations, many of them are my good colleagues even today and many are still working on ensuring Estonia’s security and developing foreign relations.
Estonia has changed and achieved a lot in the 25 years of freedom following the restoration of independence. Estonia has changed from a totalitarian society into a country, where human rights are respected, freedom of speech applies and the principles of democracy and rule of law are followed. Estonia is a NATO ally, a member of the European Union and belongs to other most important international organisations. We work every day to remain a trustworthy partner and an ally and to share our values with other countries. During the second half of next year Estonia will face a huge responsibility, Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
For 25 years there is no iron curtain between Estonians living in Estonia and Estonians abroad. In a globalised and mobile world the two terms have lost their former meaning and instead of talking about Estonians at home and expatriates, we talk more and more about “global Estonians”. Entrepreneur Rainer Sternfeld active both in the US and Estonia recently said at the Opinion Festival in Paide that Estonian border is where Estonians are and he does not feel like he has been away from home because technical solutions enable him to keep in touch.
Different estimates say that there are around 120,000 – 200,000 people from Estonia living abroad. It’s our greatest potential. Among yourselves are people that went abroad before the Republic was declared, those who fled from occupation but also people that have left during the past 25 years for shorter or longer periods. All of you have a connection with Estonia, your Estonian story, your dreams about Estonia. We are all connected by a wish that Estonia would do great. I believe that most of you keep in touch with developments in Estonia, are happy with the country’s successes and are worried about challenges facing Estonia. Everyone of us – regardless of where we are – has a chance to contribute to the improvement and future of Estonia.
Estonia’s global influence today is much stronger that one would assume from our small population. It’s partly because of you who are unofficial representatives of Estonia in different parts of the world. You introduce Estonia and share information about Estonia, you help to make Estonia more visible, you speak about Estonian language and culture. Thanks to you my work and my colleagues’ work of introducing Estonia as diplomats is much easier.
Just like Estonia needs the support of Estonians living abroad, you need the support of Estonia. Every Estonian Representation abroad has to keep in touch with Estonians living in the respective country. Our Representations ask you to come together during the holidays important to our country and our nation, they help to organize local culture events, share information and keep in touch with the local Estonian community.
The concept of the 12th Youth Song and Dance Celebration taking place in Tallinn next year is roots that connect us to Estonia wherever our life takes us and we welcome Estonians from near and far. You all, too. In 2018 the Republic of Estonia will celebrate its 100th Independence Day and we will celebrate it all over the world, regardless of the location, regardless of where we are at that point.
The independence of Estonia is a reason to be happy about our country, our land and our nation. Long live Estonia!
===========================================================================================================20. August 2016 - 9:07
Täna tähistame Eesti Vabariigi taastamise 25. aastapäeva. Küllap mäletavad paljud teist ärevaid augustipäevi 1991. aastal. Täna, 25 aastat tagasi võttis parlamendi kohuseid täitev Eesti Vabariigi Ülemnõukogu vastu otsuse Eesti riiklikust iseseisvusest, millega taastati Eesti iseseisvus. 20 augustile eelnes aastatepikkune töö ja võitlus Eesti vabaduse eest nii okupeeritud Eestis kui paguluses. Paguluses elavad eestlased kandsid edasi Eesti Vabariigi õiguslikku järjepidevust, selgitasid välismaal Balti riikidega juhtunut ja mittetunnustamise poliitika tähtsust, levitasid informatsiooni kodu-Eesti olukorra kohta, säilitasid ja arendasid Eesti keelt ja kultuuri ning kodanikuühiskonda.
Oma uusaastaläkituses ütles Lennart Meri 1993. aastal järgmist: „Riigi taastamine ei ole lambinupule vajutamine, millest hetkega sünnib piibellik valgus. Riik sünnib nagu laps: valude ja vaevadega. Aga nagu laps, sünnib ta armastusest ja sünnitab omakorda armastust“. Eesti ülesehitamisse ja arengusse on panustanud paljud Eestist oma tahte vastaselt lahkuma pidanud ja võõrsil sündinud eestlased. Paljud neist on aidanud taasluua Eesti välisministeeriumi ja esindusi, mitmed on ka täna minu väga head kolleegid, ja mitmed neist tegelevad ka praegu igapäevaselt Eesti julgeoleku kindlustamise ja välissuhete arendamisega.
25 taasiseseisvumisele järgnenud vabadusaastaga on Eesti väga palju muutunud ja väga palju saavutanud. Totalitaarsest ühiskonnast on Eesti muutunud riigiks, kus austatakse inimõigusi, kehtib sõnavabadus ja järgitakse demokraatia ja õigusriigi põhimõtteid. Eesti on NATO liitlane, Euroopa Liidu liikmesriik, kuulub mitmetesse teistesse rahvusvahelistesse kõige olulisematesse organisatsioonidesse. Töötame igapäevaselt selle nimel, et olla usaldusväärseks partneriks ja liitlaseks, et jagada oma väärtusi ka teistele riikidele. Järgmise aasta teisel poolel ootab Eestit ees vastutusrikas eesistumine Euroopa Liidus.
Juba 25 aastat ei ole Kodu-Eesti ja Välis-Eesti vahel raudset eesriiet. Globaliseerunud ja mobiilses maailmas on need mõisted kaotanud oma endise tähenduse ning kodu- ja väliseestlase asemel räägime järjest rohkem „globaalsetest eestlastest“. USAs ja Eestis tegutsev Eesti ettevõtja Rainer Sternfeld ütles hiljuti Paides toimunud arvamusfestivali järgmist: Eesti piir on seal, kus on eestlased, ning ta ei tunne, et oleks kodust ära olnud, sest tehnilised lahendused võimaldavad sidet hoida.
Eri hinnanguil elab praegu väljaspool Eestit umbes 120 000 – 200 000 Eestist pärit inimest. See on meie suur potentsiaal. Teie seas on nii enne meie Vabariigi sündi võõrsile läinuid, okupatsiooni eest pagenuid aga ka viimase 25 vabadusaasta jooksul mujale lühemaks või pikemaks ajaks siirdunuid. Teil kõigil on Eestiga oma side, teil kõigil on Eestiga oma lugu, teil kõigil on Eestiga oma unistused. Meid kõiki ühendab soov, et Eestil läheks hästi. Usun, et enamus teist hoiab end kursis Eesti arengutega, rõõmustab riigi kordaminekute üle ja valutab südant Eesti murekohtade pärast. Igaühel meist – olenemata sellest, kus me oleme – on võimalus anda oma panus Eesti arengusse, Eesti tulevikku.
Eesti globaalne mõju on tänapäeval märksa suurem kui meie väike rahvaarv seda eeldaks. Osaliselt on see nii just tänu teile, kes te olete maailma eri paigus Eesti mitteametlikeks esindajateks – tutvustate oma asukohamaal Eestit, jagate Eesti kohta informatsiooni, aitate suurendada Eesti nähtavust, räägite Eesti keelest ja kultuurist. Tänu teile on minu ja minu kolleegide töö Eesti tutvustamisel diplomaatidena palju lihtsam.
Nii nagu Eesti vajab väljaspool Eestit elavate eestlaste toetust, vajate ka teie Eesti tuge. Iga Eesti välisesinduse üheks tööülesandeks on asukohamaal elavate eestlastega sideme hoidmine. Meie esindused kutsuvad teid kokku meie riigile ja rahvale oluliste tähtpäevade puhul, aitavad organiseerida kohapeal kultuuriüritusi, levitada teavet ja hoida sidet kohaliku eesti kogukonnaga.
Järgmisel aastal toimub Tallinnas XII noorte laulu- ja tantsupidu, mille teemaks on juured, mis seovad meid Eestiga, ükskõik kuhu meid elutee ka viib ja kuhu on oodatud kõik eestlased lähedalt ja kaugelt. Ka teie, kõik. Ülejärgmisel aastal tähistame koos Eesti Vabariigi 100. aastapäeva, ja seda tähistame me igal pool üle maailma, olenemata asukohariigist, olenemata sellest, kus me parajasti oleme.
Eesti iseolemine annab meile põhjuse tunda erilist rõõmu oma riigist, oma maast, oma rahvast. Elagu vaba Eesti!
President Toomas Hendrik Ilves:
In Paris on the evening of November 13th, terrorists attacked Europe. They wished to kill as many victims, people, as possible. All of us – atheists, Christians and Muslims, the people of Europe and refugees – are victims of this coordinated terrorist attack. It is because of this violence and these terrorists that hundreds of thousands of people have fled from their homes.
The goal of the ISIS terrorists is to intimidate. So we would not dare to stand up to the crimes against humanity that they commit elsewhere; so we would forsake compassion and solidarity when accepting refugees from war, so we would turn our back on those in trouble and those who suffer, so we would close our borders and would fear to extend a helping hand.
We cannot allow fear to take over. If we do, the terrorists have won, just like terror won one time in our own country. After the attacks in Paris, it is important to understand a familiar principle: an attack against one is an attack against all. Only together can each country defend itself. Or does someone think that we can stand up to an ISIS-style attack without the help of our allies?
Recalling the wording of semiotician Mihhail Lotman, we must react deliberately, advisedly and rapidly. This presumes very good international cooperation, and increased defense cooperation in Europe. The courage to make the correct and effective countermoves. The efficient control of the European Union’s external borders. Even greater attention to the each country’s internal security and that of the European Union in general. According to the information available today, one of the attackers in Paris was a French citizen.
We must know who is arriving in Europe, and why. An uncontrolled migration flow conceals a threat and Europe must find better methods for making sure who is who, but we must not close the door to those who truly need help. The current refugee crisis is not the reason or motive for the Paris terrorist attacks.
Europe must care about its security, but Europe must not be afraid.
On August 11th, the Joint Baltic American National Committee (JBANC) hosted its second annual briefing on Capitol Hill for visiting Baltic high school students. The students were in the United States for a three week Leadership Academy program under the auspices of the Baltic American Freedom Foundation (BAFF).
Forty students participated in this year’s program and over three weeks they worked on their skills as future entrepreneurs and leaders. During their final week in the U.S., the students went to New York City and Washington DC for enrichment programs and sightseeing.
The first speaker was JBANC chair and board member Ingrida Lusis. Ms. Lusis spoke to the students about JBANC, its main functions, and about some of the interns that have spent time at JBANC over the years and where they are now. One former intern was mentioned specifically - Lita Juberte - who was recently appointed as the press spokesperson for the Latvian Cabinet of Ministers. Ms. Juberte was at JBANC in 2013-2014 via the BAFF professional internship program.
Current JBANC interns Erik Lazdins and Kara Nordness, who helped organize the event, each spoke to the students about their experiences at JBANC this summer. They talked to the students about how working for JBANC has given them the opportunity to discuss concerns in the U.S. Congress, meet ambassadors and diplomats, and work towards educating others about the Baltic countries and the issues and concerns of Baltic-Americans.
The next speaker was Dr. Agnia Grigas, an energy and political risk expert, hailing originally from Lithuania. Dr. Grigas, who spoke at JBANC’s April conference, specializes in Russia, Eastern Europe, and the post-Soviet space. She is a published author and as a researcher she often collaborates with many American and European institutions. She spoke to the students about her experiences and how all of her choices in school and in her career have helped to make her who she is today. Dr. Grigas told them that even if they start a job but later find that it is not the right fit, they should use it as a teaching experience and see it in a positive way as part of their journey to building a successful career in their chosen field. The students had plenty of questions for Dr. Grigas. Several even asked her how they could become one of her research assistants!
One of the students, Mart Piirimees from Estonia, took time to collectively thank everyone including JBANC for organizing the events for the day. It was a great day and truly inspiring to see so many young people hopeful about their future as community and business leaders. They all looked forward to going back home and continuing their dreams of becoming entrepreneurs and utilizing the ideas and skills that were taught at the BAFF Leadership Academy.
JBANC chair Ingrida Lusis, who welcomed participants at the event, mentioned afterwards that "cooperation with the Baltic American Freedom Foundation in helping to introduce American politics, policies, and values to young professionals and students from Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania has been a win-win in bolstering people-to-people contacts between the United State, the Baltic countries, and the Baltic-American community."
This June, we remember the mass deportations conducted by the Soviet Union in the occupied Baltic countries during World War II. June 14, 1941, marked the beginning of one of the largest mass deportations ever carried out by a communist regime, and the month of June serves as an annual time of mourning for these victims of communism.
The origins of the deportation stem from the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact signed on August 23, 1939, by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. This agreement cleared the way for Germany to invade Poland, and allowed the USSR to establish a Soviet “sphere of influence” in Eastern European countries which included Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
By June 1940, the Soviet Union had invaded and occupied Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, immediately implementing a reign of repression and terror. The NKVD began by registering and tracking anti-Soviet elements and soon after, the Soviets started conducting arrests, deportations and executions. Their main objective was to eliminate the nation’s cultural, business, political, and military elite.
After the Baltic countries were illegally annexed and incorporated into the Soviet Union in August 1940, the Kremlin sought to suppress any possible resistance to Soviet rule. In May 1941, official instructions were issued to the NKVD to exterminate active persons, including those belonging to former government, military, police, political and voluntary state defense organizations, along with those in student organizations, anti-Soviet groups, foreign companies, and also Russian immigrants and other minorities in Estonia, among others. The top secret “Directive on the Deportation of the Socially Alien Element from the Baltic Republics, Western Ukraine, Western Belorussia, and Moldavia,” declared Soviet enemies to be “under arrest or subject to deportation without any legal process.”
It is important to note that the United States and other countries refused to recognize the legitimacy of Soviet control over Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. The U.S. policy of non-recognition, issued on July 23, 1940 (the “Welles Declaration”), underscored support for Baltic sovereignty, territorial integrity, and international law, and remained in force for half a century.
On June 14, 1941 the USSR began its first massive deportation, which lasted four days. During this state-sponsored operation, Soviet armed groups targeted houses and silently removed residents, including children, and the elderly. Some were shot on the spot. The rest were loaded into trains bound for Siberia, to the Russian Gulags.
In Estonia, the country’s first deportations targeted the national elite. Over 10,000 Estonians were deported from June 14 to 17. Over 7,000 of them were women, children and the elderly. By the end of the deportations, more than three percent of the Estonian population had been sent to Siberia.
On June 14, approximately 17,500 Lithuanians were deported. Forty percent of those were under 16 years old.
In all, nearly 50,000 citizens of the Baltic countries were sent to the Gulag in June 1941. Some estimates put that number as high as 65,000 victims.
Thousands of those deported died on their way to the Gulags. Those who survived were left to live a hard life; most perished there, and a smaller number were released and allowed to return home. This was all kept secret by the Soviets. There were no newspaper or radio reports about these crimes. The Kremlin orchestrated a far-reaching disinformation and censorship campaign throughout the Baltics to keep news of their criminal actions from spreading.
The deportations in the Baltics were interrupted by the German invasion against the Soviet Union. Many of the countries that belonged to the Soviet sphere saw this battle between totalitarian powers as an opportunity to gain back their independence – Nazi propaganda from that time claimed that Wehrmacht forces were fighting to free the Baltic people from Soviet oppression. From June 22 to June 28, Lithuania, Hungary, and Romania all saw anti-Soviet uprisings. However, no sooner had the Soviets been expelled than the Nazis took over, replacing one brutal foreign occupying force with another.
Nazi rule over Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia lasted three years. The Soviets re-occupied the Baltic countries in 1944, and forcibly re-annexed those countries. In March 1949, the Kremlin organized a second and even more massive deportation of Baltic citizens to the Gulags.
More than 200,000 people were deported from the Baltics between 1940 and 1953, a criminal legacy of Soviet rule that is today considered a crime against humanity by the European Court of Human Rights and others. As a revisionist Russian government today menaces the region, including the Baltic countries, memories of this painful period remain vivid. This month we remember the victims of Soviet deportation – men, women, and children – and honor their sacrifices.
Congressman John Shimkus (R- Ill.), who was in attendance, was the sponsor of the bill designating Black Ribbon Day (H.R. 4435), which passed the House. If the Senate passes a matching bill, the United States will join more than a dozen countries in making August 23 the official "Black Ribbon Day."
Members of Congress, ambassadors, and human rights and ethnic group leaders laid a wreath in the Freedom Foyer of the U.S. Capitol. Among these were the three Baltic ambassadors to the United States, including the newly arrived Estonian Ambassador Eerik Marmei; Tanel Sepp, Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of Estonia; Karl Altau, JBANC Managing Director, and Marju Rink-Abel, President, Estonian American National Council.
The House Baltic Caucus currently has 52 Members, and is co-chaired by Congressmen John Shimkus (R-IL) and Adam Schiff (D-CA).
From Jaak Pedak, 5/23/14:
This is especially important in light with what is happening in Ukraine today. JBANC and our volunteers spent the past two days on the Hill delivering letters to all House offices in a final push for support. Thanks especially to Congressman John Shimkus for his leadership on this over the past two years in pushing this through. More information available over coming days via JBANC media.
Baltic-American communities, especially, worked hard on this over the course of this congressional session - from coast to coast. Had lots of great support from across the nation in the original resolution.
JBANC Press Release: For Immediate Release contact: Karl Altau
Reception for new Music Director of the Sarasota Orchestra, Anu Tali and Estonian Ambassador Marina Kaljurand
Preserve your family’s history! Stanford University Libraries and the Museum of Occupations in Tallinn collecting Estonian expats’ family / Stanfordi Ülikooli Raamatukogu ja Okupatsioonide Muuseum Tallinnas ootavad väliseestlaste perekonnaraamatuid
A family photobook is a collection of stories and documents, which tells the story of one family by using text (facts, memoirs, captions) and pictures (photos, snapshots of documents). The collection may focus on the life story (or parts of the life story) of one or a few persons, or on the story of the family as a whole. In order to make such a compendium, one needs to gather suitable material, form a chronological or thematical, handwritten or computer-based text using the material, and add copies or scans of photos and documents. Finally, the text may be printed and/or binded. It is a great project for any family! Many on-line photo services (example: Snapfish and Shutterfly) lead the photobook maker through the process of compiling a book and then ordering printed copies.
SUL and the museum are expecting to collect material pertaining to WWII (Soviet and German occupations, escaping Estonia, life in DP camps) as well as the periods preceding (life in Estonia before WWII) and succeeding it (life in USA, Canada etc.). One of the aims of collecting the photobooks is, with the permission of photobook donors, to develop an exhibit from the material in the future.
Liisi Eglit, Assistant Curator for Estonian and Baltic Studies, Stanford University Libraries (Liisi.Eglit@stanford.edu, (650) 847-9115)
Stanfordi Ülikooli Raamatukogu ja Okupatsioonide Muuseum alustavad jaanuarist 2014 väliseestlaste perekonnaraamatute kogumiskampaaniaga ning ootavad kõiki huvitatuid projektis kaasa lööma. Projekti eesmärk on aidata talletada kultuuripärandit, mis valgustab eestlaste (pagulas)teekonda Eestist lahkumisel ning elu USAs, Kanadas, Austraalias jt välisriikides. Projekt viiakse läbi tähendusrikkal ajal, mil II maailmasõja aegsest suurest põgenemisest möödub 70 aastat.
Perekonnaraamatute ja –albumite kogumine annab seejuures perekondadele endale võimaluse teha selektsioon materjalist (fotod, kirjad, dokumendid) ja lugudest, mida nad järgmiste põlvkondade jaoks talletada soovivad, ning siduda need mälestused ja dokumendid kokku üheks trükiseks neile sobival kujul.
Perekonnaraamat või –album on tavapäraselt lugude ja dokumentide kollektsioon, mis jutustab nii teksti (faktoloogia, mälestused, pildiallkirjad) kui piltide (fotod, dokumentide ülespildistused) abil ühe perekonna/suguvõsa loo. Tegu võib olla nii ühe/mitme inimese eluloo või selle katkete edasiandmisega kui kogu perekonna ajaloole pühendatud kogumikuga. Kogumiku koostamiseks tuleb koguda kokku sobiv materjal, see kas käsikirjaliselt või arvuti abil kronoloogiliseks või temaatiliseks jutuks vormida ning lisada juurde fotode ja dokumentide koopiad või ülespildistused. Arvuti abil koostatud kogumiku võib välja printida ning soovi korral köita.
Raamatukogu ja muuseum koguvad nii II maailmasõja aega (Nõukogude ja Saksa periood, Eestist põgenemine, elu DP-laagrites) kui varasemat (elu Eestis enne II maailmasõda) ja hilisemat perioodi (elu sihtriigis) kajastavaid perekonnaraamatud. Samuti on oodatud nende eestlaste lood, kes on Eestis lahkunud hiljuti, pärast 1991. a.
Kogumiskampaania üks eesmärke on kogutud raamatutest annetajate loal näituse koostamine.
Raamatukogu ja muuseum kutsuvad endaga ühendust võtma nii neid, kel sarnased raamatud/albumid juba oma perekonna või suguvõsa kohta olemas, kui neid, kel see idee alles loomisjärgus:
Liisi Eglit, Eesti ja Balti õpingute assisteeriv kuraator, Stanfordi Ülikooli Raamatukogud (Liisi.Eglit@stanford.edu, (650) 847-9115)
Kadri Viires, Okupatsioonide Muuseumi direktor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Tõnu Kaljuste wins a Grammy in the Best Choral Performance category for his work on Arvo Pärt’s “Adam’s Lament”!
“Adam’s Lament” was recorded with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, the Sinfonietta Riga, the Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, the Latvian Radio Choir and the Vox Clamantis ensemble.
It was recorded with Pärt’s active participation in the resonant 13th-century church of St. Nicholas in Tallinn, that surrounds the singing with a hazy echo. The album conveys a feeling of partaking of ancient religious rites in a sacred space.
“Adam’s Lament” was also nominated in the Best Contemporary Classical Composition category.
Estonian American Kalev H. Leetaru honored as one of Foreign Policy Magazine’s top 100 Global Thinkers of 2013.
Foreign Policy Magazine continues: "Kalev Leetaru has a mind for the 21st century, but the soul of an ancient prophet. A master of "big data," Leetaru uses high-powered algorithms to analyze vast quantities of news reports and other publicly available intelligence, enabling him to see previously hidden patterns in economic and political developments.
In 2013, he established the Global Database of Events, Language, and Tone (GDELT), an enormously ambitious project that could become the go-to information trove for social scientists of all stripes. The database, which has generated a frenzy of excitement among journalists and tech geeks, among others, is a catalog of more than 200 million social and political events going back all the way to 1800—everything from speeches to epidemics to wars. And gdelt adds between 30,000 and 100,000 events each day, based on contemporary news coverage.
The database can be used to map the connections among events, people, and ideas. Indeed, Leetaru envisions his project as a powerful way of understanding how and why things happen, which, in turn, could help us plan better for the future. Leetaru imagines a world in which big data has revolutionized every field—from medicine, where we could track disease outbreaks in real time, to peace-building, where we could predict patterns of violence. That future may not be far off: By analyzing news reports from the weeks leading up to the event, Leetaru found that the world just might have predicted the 2011 Egyptian revolution.
'People talk about oceans of information,' Leetaru said. 'If you look below the surface, there's a whole world of latent information that we're just beginning to try to understand.'"
The Estonian American National Council, which provided financial support for the book's distribution, congratulates Ms. Gottschalk!
Põgenemine ja uue eluga Saksamaal ja Inglismaal seotud trauma ning raskused on inglisekeeles kirjeldatud just sellepärast, et raamatu levik oleks nii laialdane kui võimalik. Eesti keelne raamat ei oleks jõudnud "The Economist-i" laualegi.
Kui käsikiri oli valmis, pöördus Elin Toona Eesti Rahvuskomitee Ühendriikides esimehe poole nõu ja abi saamiseks trükikoja leidmisega. Selgus, et Lakeshore Press, kelle omaniku P. Aarne Vesilinnu eesmärgiks oli avaldada inglisekeelseid raamatuid mis tegelevad Eesti ja eestlaste ajalooga , oli nõus seda trükkima. Kui raamat oli valmis, toetas Eesti Rahvuskomitee raamatute levitamist autori poolt. Tähtis tegur raamatu tutvustamisel oli ka autori reis Inglismaale, mida toetas Eesti Kultuurfond USA-s. Ilmselt mängisid mõlemad toetused rolli memuaari levikuga Inglismaal, kus ajakiri "The Economist" ilmub.
Seitsme-aastane Elin Toona lahkus Haapsalust septembris, 1944, koos ema Liki Toonaga ja vanaema Ella Ennoga, luuletaja Ernst Enno lesk. Tema siis ei aimanud, et ta enam kunagi koju ega eesti kooli ei saa. Siiski sai temast kirjanik kes on kirjutanud raamatuid, luuletusi ja ajaleheartikleid, nii inglise kui eesti keeles. Tema esimene eestikeelne raamat, "Puuinge"` (1964), pälvis Henrik Visnapuu kirjandusauhinna. Tema sulest on veel ilmunud "Lotukata" (1969); "Sipelgas sinise kausi all" (1974); "In Search of Coffee Mountains" ("Lotukata", inglise keeles) (1977 ameerikas ja 1979 joonistustega Inglismaal); "Kaleviküla viimne tütar" (1988); "Kolm valget tuvi`` (1992); "Rõõm teeb taeva taga tuld. Ernst Enno" (2000); ja "Ella" (2008). Autor elab nüüd Palm Harboris, Floridas.
Õnnitleme Elin Toona Gottschalki suurepärase memuaari ning auhinna eest! Raamat on saadaval Lakeshore Pressilt (www.lakeshorepressbooks.com) ning Amazonilt (www.amazon.com).
More details: From ERR NEWS, Published: 21.11.2013 14:25
She lived through several occupations herself. She was born Olga Ritso in Ukraine in 1920, where her Estonian father was a medical student, during the chaos of the civil war.
As Soviet power consolidated, the family's attempt to return to Estonia via Moscow was complicated. In 1922, her mother died of illness related to the Holodomor, the Ukraine famine. Her father was arrested by the Bolsheviks and would not be reunited with the family until 1932. The children managed to receive safe passage to Estonia thanks to her uncle's railway connections and the aid of the Red Cross, and initially stayed with foster families upon their return.
She fled in autumn 1944 to Germany, where she worked as an eye doctor and pediatrician in displaced persons camps. After emigrating to the US in 1949, she continued practicing medicine and in 1960 married prominent Swiss-born physicist and engineer Walter Kistler.
Kistler-Ritso kept a close eye on developments in Estonia, and visited family there in 1976. The freedom of 1990s brought a chance for greater involvement, and the foundation for the Museum of Occupations was established in 1998. The museum was completely funded by private donations. In 2011, the foundation also provided a large endowment to the Stanford University Libraries' Baltic studies program.
Kistler-Ritso is survived by her husband and her daughter, Sylvia Thompson, who is in charge of running the foundation.
An exhibition on Kistler-Ritso's life and legacy is currently running at the museum."
"Nicole Aunapu Mann, 35-year-old U.S. Marine Corps fighter pilot whose grandfather emigrated from Estonia before World War II, is one of eight members of NASA's 2013 Astronaut Candidate Class, the weekly Eesti Ekspress said.
The U.S. space agency announced the appointment of eight new astronauts in June, and a record half of NASA's first astronaut class since 2009 are women. NASA said the eight were chosen from the second largest pool of applications ever received -- over 6,100. Intensive training for the group started at the space center in Houston in August and most likely Nicole Mann will be among the crew of the International Space Station in about ten years, the Estonian weekly said.
Nicole's Estonian born grandfather, Helmuth Aunapu, emigrated to America before WWII. Nicole's sister Kirsten told the newspaper the sisters never saw their grandfather, who died before they were born. She said they were aware of their Estonian roots though.
Information of the NASA website says Nicole Aunapu Mann, originally is from Penngrove, California, is a major with the U.S. Marine Corps. She is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Stanford University and the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School. Mann is an F/A 18 pilot, currently serving as an Integrated Product Team Lead at the U.S. Naval Air Station, Patuxent River. She served on an F/A-18 in Iraq and Afghanistan, making approximately 150 landings on a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Gulf."
We cannot forget the terror that millions of citizens in Central and Eastern Europe endured while under the ruthless repression of occupying and oppressive totalitarian states;
The memories of Europe's tragic past should be remembered and this will honor the victims, condemn the perpetrators, and lay the foundation for reconciliation based on truth and remembrance.
Estonian National Museum is looking for WWII and post-WWII correspondence / Eesti Rahva Muuseum otsib kirju
For this reason, the Estonian National Museum in Tartu is seeking personal correspondences between Estonian emigrants to the West and those who stayed behind, written during the confusion of WWII. Especially valuable would be correspondences over a period of several decades which consist of both received and sent letters, although one-sided correspondence is still important. The Museum is also interested in correspondence prior to WWII.
For details, contact Riina Reinvelt (tel: +372 7350406, e-mail: email@example.com), or write to: Estonian National Museum, Veski 32, Tartu 51014, Estonia.
Kuni viimase ajani olid paberkirjad pea ainukeseks võimaluseks pidada sidet pereliikmete või sõpradega, kes vabatahtlikult või sunniviisiliselt olid sunnitud kodumaalt lahkuma. Kirjad on oluliseks uurimisallikaks, kuna lisaks autobiograafilisele informatsioonile annavad nad teavet ümbritseva keskkonna ja sotsiaalsete olude kohta.
Eestis Tartus asuv Eesti Rahva Muuseum soovib oma kogusid täiendada kirjadega, mida vahetasid omavahel Teise maailma keerises välismaale pääsenud ja kodumaale maha jäänud eestlased. Samuti nende kirjadega, mida pagulased vahetasid omavahel. Kui keelegi valduses on enne teist maailmasõda Eestist lahkunute ja nõukogude ajal läände pääsenute kirju, on ka need muuseumile väga huvipakkuvad. Eriti väärtuslikud on läbi mitme aastakümne kestnud kirjavahetused, mille puhul on säilinud nii saadud kui saadetud kirjad. Kui kahepoolne kirjavahetus ei ole säilinud, siis on ka ühe poole kirjad uurijatele väärtuslikuks allikaks.
Täiendavat infot saab muuseumi kogude osakonna juhatajalt (Riina Reinvelt, tel: +372 7350406, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) või kirjutades aadressil: Estonian National Museum, Veski 32, Tartu 51014, Estonia.
The guest list: Presidents Toomas Hendrik Ilves of Estonia, Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania, and Andris Berzins of Latvia.
The joint meeting at the White House "will highlight the significant transformations the Baltic states have undergone since restoring their independence two decades ago," said the announcement.
The White House added:
"Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia are valued NATO allies, and the four leaders will discuss a broad range of mutual interests, including regional cooperation on shared challenges, energy security, the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership negotiations, defense, and cyber cooperation. The presidents will also discuss joint efforts to advance human rights and democratic values, including development assistance for emerging democracies around the world.
The White House Office of the Press Secretary: August 30, 2013
FACT SHEET: The United States and Estonia - NATO Allies and Global Partners
President Obama hosted Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves, along with Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė and Latvian President Andris Bērziņš, for a meeting at the White House on August 30. The visit underscored the close ties between the United States and the Baltic states, which are grounded in our shared values, ideals, and interests. The leaders highlighted ongoing cooperation in the following areas:
Defense and Security Cooperation:
- Sustaining NATO capabilities: Estonia demonstrates its commitment to transatlantic security as one of only a few NATO allies that meet the NATO benchmark of spending at least 2 percent of GDP on defense.
- Afghanistan: Estonia is a stalwart supporter of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission in Afghanistan and has committed to continue supporting NATO’s post-2014 non-combat mission. Estonia currently has more than 160 troops, Special Operations Forces, and trainers deployed in Afghanistan, primarily in Helmand province. In addition to providing $1.3 million in development assistance to Afghanistan in 2013, Estonia has pledged $500,000 annually from 2015 to 2017 to support the Afghan National Security Forces. Tallinn is also a key port along the Northern Distribution Network, which facilitates the transport of materiel to coalition troops in Afghanistan and serves as a retrograde route for materiel leaving the theater.
- Cyber Security: Estonia is a key ally and recognized leader on issues of cyber security. Our bilateral cyber relationship is captured in our pending partnership statement and includes collaborative efforts on network protection, development cooperation, combating cyber-crime, strategic global policy alignment, internet freedom, and improving cyber education. Estonian and American Computer Emergency Readiness Teams (CERTs) are in regular contact in order to effectively respond to cyber incidents.
- Defense and Security Cooperation: U.S. and Estonian troops participate in a range of joint and multilateral exercises, including: BALTOPS, SABER STRIKE, and STEADFAST JAZZ 13. Estonian soldiers and defense personnel also receive technical training and strategic education in the United States.
- NATO Allies: As NATO allies, the United States and Estonia are committed to each other’s defense and partner in critical areas around the world. Estonia also hosts a NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence, which serves as a repository of expertise on cyber security issues.
- The State Partnership Program: Estonia’s military maintains an active relationship with the Maryland National Guard through the State Partnership Program. Last year, the two worked jointly to train Estonian helicopter pilots to support medical evacuation efforts in Afghanistan.
Diplomatic Cooperation and Global Development:
- Development Cooperation: Estonia has drawn on its transition experiences and cyber expertise to provide specialized development assistance in the sectors of e-governance, cyber security, and civil society. In addition to partnering with the U.S. government to support development projects in Moldova and Georgia through the Department of State’s Emerging Donor Challenge Fund, Estonia mentors Eastern Partnership countries and other emerging democracies through the Tallinn-based Eastern Partnership Center.
- Internet Freedom: Estonia is a close partner in the Freedom Online Coalition, a group of governments collaborating to advance Internet freedom. As current chair of the coalition, Estonia will host the next ministerial in Tallinn in spring 2014. The United States and Estonia are also donors to the Digital Defenders Partnership, which provides emergency support for Internet users in repressive environments who are under threat for peacefully exercising their universal rights online.
- Leaders Engaged in New Democracies (LEND) Network: The United States and Estonia co-chair the Leaders Engaged in New Democracies (LEND) network, a groundbreaking technology platform that connects key leaders in young democracies with experts on democratization from around the world. Working under the auspices of the Community of Democracies, LEND leverages expertise from world leaders including former presidents, prime ministers, and supreme court justices in dozens of countries.
Economic, Energy, and Environmental Cooperation:
- Energy Security: Estonia enjoys a high degree of energy self-sufficiency due to its large domestic oil shale reserves, from which the country derives approximately 87 percent of its electricity. In 2011, the United States and Estonia signed an Oil Shale Cooperation Agreement to promote research in this area.
- Trade, Investment, and Jobs: Bilateral trade in goods with Estonia was $743 million in 2012. The government of Estonia has expressed strong support for the U.S.-EU Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP) negotiations. T-TIP aims to boost economic growth in the United States and in the EU and add to the more than 13 million American and EU jobs already supported by transatlantic trade and investment.
Educational and Cultural Ties:
- Educational Exchange Programs: Last year marked the 20th anniversary of the Fulbright program in Estonia. Since 1992, more than 160 Estonians have been educated, taught, or performed research in the United States through the Fulbright Program. In the past 20 years, more than 170 U.S. Fulbright students and scholars have studied, researched, or taught classes in Estonia.
- Cultural Programs: Annual festivals such as the jazz festival, Jazzkaar (Jazz Arch), and the Black Nights Film Festival, which features North American independent films, highlight the rich cultural ties between Estonia and the United States. Arts-based cultural exchanges in the areas of music, literature and the humanities, and museum communities have strengthened ties between American and Estonian societies
- Professional Exchange Programs: Since 1991, 540 Estonians have participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP), the Department of State’s premier professional exchange program, which brings current and emerging foreign leaders in a variety of fields to the United States to experience this country firsthand and cultivate lasting relationships with their American counterparts. In addition, approximately 730 Estonians took part in privately funded professional exchanges with the United States last year, including the Summer Work Travel, Intern, Short Term Scholar, and Au Pair programs.
- Science Cooperation: The United States and Estonia signed a bilateral Science and Technology Agreement in 2008 that prioritized collaboration on environmental and biodiversity protection, marine science, energy, space, HIV/AIDS, engineering, and sustainable development. Estonia and the United States are also jointly engaged in the GLOBE (Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment) program. Currently, 81 Estonian schools collect data on soil, biometrics, and hydrology that they upload to a NASA website for use by U.S. researchers.