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Twenty years ago The New York Times agreed with the administration’s foreign policy that favored democratization of the Soviet Union but not its disintegration. On November 6. 1989,  the paper published a dissenting letter, and supplied its own headline.

Ago Ambre

November 6, 1989

To the Editor: 

Your observation that the Baltic republics, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, ''are far from becoming economically viable in the next few years'' (''A Sound Course on the Baltics,'' editorial, Oct. 21) applies more to the Soviet Union than to the Baltic states. The three republics, although producing only 4 percent of the Soviet gross national product, account for 12 percent of Soviet consumer-goods production. The economies of these three are well diversified in sharp contrast to the monocultures the central government in Moscow forced on many other areas. In addition, about 25 percent of Soviet trade flows through the Baltic states, a source of substantial income even now. 

I am writing this in English, for I want to have its intended message reach across our diaspora, the Estonian diaspora.  It has been done before, but the context was different and it was long ago. It is high time that we write the histories of our organizations and our activities before we disappear along with our memory.  The decades I am talking about were rich and important in a variety of ways, both in terms of preserving our past as well as our future.  What we did was as important for us as it was for Estonia.  And yes, we were successful, even incredibly successful.  We had a purpose and we had a cause.  We cannot let it disappear into a black hole. 

The White House - On September 25, 2009 President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate Michael C. Polt to the post of  Ambassador to the Republic of Estonia.
Michael Polt is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service and has been the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of Legislative Affairs since August 2008. Prior to that he was a State Department Senior Transatlantic Fellow to the German Marshall Fund of the US.

MFA Review - On 23 August 1939, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany concluded a treaty of non-aggression known as the Molotov- Ribbentrop Pact (hereinafter the MRP) after its signatories, the Soviet Union's People's Commissar for Foreign Affairs Vyacheslav Molotov and Foreign Minister of Nazi Germany Joachim von Ribbentrop. In the secret protocols that accompanied the treaty of non-aggression, the two totalitarian powers divided Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania in violation of international law into respective spheres of influence, which led to Nazi Germany starting the Second World War on 1 September 1939 with its attack on Poland.


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