On this day: a nuclear disaster in the USSR | In Times Gone By…

This is the first picture taken of the destroyed nuclear reactor in Chernobyl (Chornobyl in Ukrainian), Ukraine. 27th April, 1986. Taken from a helicopter flying over to assess the damage, the imag…

Source: On this day: a nuclear disaster in the USSR | In Times Gone By…

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The art of storytelling in times of war

“…In 1990 a young girl offered a heart wrenching testimony to how Iraqi soldiers had forced their way into a maternity ward in Kuwait, how they’d destroyed the islolettes and left newborn and premature infants to die. She called herself Nayira. Her testimony made a tremendous impression and it had a huge emotionally impact in the first Gulf War against Iraq. The problem was, though: the story was a hoax. Nayira was the daughter of Kuwait’s ambassador to USA. Her testimony was produced by a PR agency, and what she told had no root in reality…” Wikipedia.

This story has everything. Young, crying girl, premature infants, barbarian soldiers. As Frank Zappa would have said: It is carefully designed to suck…

Source: The art of storytelling in times of war

On this day: the January Uprising began | In Times Gone By…

A symbolic painting of the aftermath of the uprising.

On the 22nd of January, 1863, people of present-day Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus and Latvia rose up against rule by the Russian Empire.The uprising would last into the following year, and would result in Russia harshly punishing those captured.

Source: On this day: the January Uprising began | In Times Gone By…

The Introduction

toritto

“Comrade Balabanoff! There is someone here I would like you to meet!”

Angelica turned around to face the voice. It was Franco, one of her colleagues on the Central Committee of the Italian Socialist Party.

“Good evening! How are you!” He gently kissed her on the cheek. With him was a young man rather shabbily dressed, looking somewhat down and out.

Angelica had seen thousands like him. No work and few prospects.

Her life had been so different. Born in Ukraine in 1878, she was the youngest of 14 children, 7 of whom had died before she was born. Her family was very well to do and she wanted for nothing except a mother’s love.

Her mother was a tyrant insisting that the poor peasant household servants bow and scrape, even before the children. Angelica still cringed with embarrassment thinking of grown men humiliating themselves before her because they needed…

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On this day: the Night of the Murdered Poets in Russia

In Times Gone By...

Flag of the Russian SFSR (1937-1954)

The flag of Russia in 1952

On the 12th of August, 1952, thirteen Jews from across the Soviet Union, including Ukraine, Latvia and Lithuania were executed in Moscow on orders from the Russian government. All were falsely accused of espionage and treason, and their executions came after three years of imprisonment and torture.

Five of the murdered were Yiddish poets, hence the name of the infamous day.

Lina Stern Latvian Jew Persecuted by Russia and Stalin in the 1950s Women's History USSR Moscow

Lina Stern

A fourteenth person died in prison five months later, and a fifteenth, a Latvian scientist by the name of Lina Stern, was the only survivor. She spent time in a labour camp until Stalin’s death, but was officially declared “less guilty” so that the USSR could continue to make use of her medical research.

Neither the trials nor the executions were ever mentioned in the Russian media, however the families of the accused were exiled by Stalin. They did not learn the…

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