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  • Baltic-American team put a scare into Red Army machine
    Varrak who himself played for Tallinn s top basketball club from 1999 to 2005 Nowadays this 32 year old is trying to make his mark as a basketball strategist and tactician As they say even an average playmaker can make a very good basketball coach On the other hand the coaching staff can only do so much it s players who make passes set screens and ultimately put the ball in a basket That s why the topic of talent is coming up big time In the case of Kalev the main question is who have they got to match CSKA s all around game down on the court Kalev have several young Estonian players a couple of Americans a Lithuanian centre and one decent Latvian forward named Rolands Freimanis and that s basically it And surprisingly this Baltic American squad of basketball journeymen looked pretty legit against CSKA in the first quarter Eric Keedus the 24 year old Estonian national team member fearlessly went to the opponent s hoop then tried to lock down the best Moscow player Sonny Weems in defence The whole Kalev team played good transition defense getting back and limiting Moscow s opportunities for fast breaks And of course Freimanis was shooting from all over the field With 23 points he ended up as a top scorer from either team What complicated the mission further for Kalev is the fact that you don t win a basketball game after just one quarter you ve got to persevere until the final buzzer That s where CSKA s experience and its long bench took over Moscow s head coach Dimitris Itudis has so many talented players that his intra squad games during practices are broadcasted on national TV because they get such high ratings And the team still doesn t include captain Victor Khryapa who is recuperating after the injury This time against Kalev it was the bench play that helped CSKA to make a strong run in the second quarter Plus of course the talent of Milos Teodosic who is arguably one of the best guards in all of European basketball His sleight of hands and knack for so called blind passes are so amazing he would be welcomed into a Harlem Globetrotters showmen style team any day of the week His 22 points and half a dozen of wow assists helped CSKA to secure a big lead in the final quarter and wrap up a game with a score of 102 81 Even though for the Estonian basketball champions this business trip failed to bring victorious joy it still fulfilled a purpose They say you grow as a professional after just such a loss You just go back soak it all in make the adjustments forget all about it and move forward The season is too short to reminisce To be a good player you have got to have a short memory And mad basketball skills A good team needs 12 of a kind plus

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/baltic-american_team_put_a_scare_into_red_army_machine/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Screw Off, Italy!
    Union and no one would suggest that this is some minor thing Why last year Riga was the European Cultural Capital Ditto A huge choir festival was held here Ditto For that matter Latvia regularly organises its Song and Dance Festival which brings together tens of thousands of people There s been a NATO summit here We organised the world ice hockey championship a few years ago Ditto ditto ditto The real problem here is something else It is that for years and years and years the Latvian government has been talking about ways of improving the government procurement system but because most of Latvia s political parties are entirely beholden to their sponsors many of whom are business types nothing has been done One problem for instance is that the country has very lax rules on appealing decisions by procurement commissions The result is inevitably that the relevant case ends up before the courts and as anyone who does business in Latvia knows the Latvian judicial system is often as slow as a turtle stuck in molasses during the depth of winter Quite often the result is that the original bidder just gives up In this particular case it is true that businesses did see the Expo project as a big fat trough at which big fat pigs can gather For instance one line item in the budget spoke to thousands of euros to wait for it post pictures on Instagram My goodness I know how to post pictures on Instagram I have never done so but if someone offered me thousands of euros I certainly would do that Other companies padded their proposals in some cases probably so that the sums could be lowered a bit to show how forthcoming the enterprise was but still ensuring that the relevant enterprise would make out like a bandit For the time being Latvia s page on the Expo Website is still up as is Latvia s own page about participation in the event This would seem to suggest that once the government finally arrived at its decision not to take part it didn t occur to anyone to RSVP That too would be pretty much par for the course for Latvia s government Not to mention rude But the result is sad nonetheless Yes a bricks and mortar exhibition can be seen as old fashioned in this electronic day and age The Scandinavian countries are not taking part this year But Lithuania Estonia Russia and Belarus Latvia s four bordering countries are As are more than 190 other countries of the world Apparently the place where Latvia s pavilion was supposed to be is going to be empty Pity Oh and one final note to the state secretary of the Foreign Ministry Italy is patrolling our airspace as a member state of NATO dear sir NATO is not a little kid Neither Italy nor most particularly the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is likely to throw a snit and refuse to

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/screw_off__italy_/ (2016-02-13)
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  • EMAIL TO THE EDITOR To the Editor of the Baltic Times.
    change foreign names namely Politicians Celebrities to Latvian spelling I wonder if any of your readers can enlighten me as to the reason for this It is not a new phenomena my late Husband who was Latvian also complained about it I feel that any Latvian wishing to travel or work in Europe would be totally confused A name is a name and should not be Latvianized Anne Bergmanis Retired UK Pensioner residing in Latvia Comments Related Articles Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with the latest Baltic news and views enabling you full access from anywhere with an Internet connection Subscribe Now About The Baltic Times The Baltic Times is an independent monthly newspaper that covers latest political economic business and cultural events in Estonia Latvia and Lithuania Born of a merger between The Baltic Independent and The Baltic Observer in 1996 The Baltic Times continues to bring objective comprehensive and timely information to those with an interest in this rapidly developing area of the Baltic Sea region Read more Our news analysis

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/email_to_the_editor_to_the_editor_of_the_baltic_times_/ (2016-02-13)
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  • WHY LATVIA SHOULD SELL LATGALE TO RUSSIA
    to the Rouble Zone The proceeds of the sale can be used to balance budgets across the EU and provide some real money to pay for this mysterious 300 billion euros or so worth of investment that the newly appointed and not elected President of the European Commission Jean Claude Junker plans to make Russia seems utterly desperate for more members of its Eurasian Economic Union and if Greek policy makers take the necessary economic measures they should easily manage to meet the strict corruption requirements Greece would thrive exchanging their euros for roubles would make Athenian taxi drivers into oligarchs and Greek exports of Feta cheese no longer hampered by the sanctions would flood the Russian domestic market putting Siberian Mozerrella and St Petersburg Parmesan out of business not only causing a far more damaging impact on the Russian economy than the sanctions but also spreading obesity and halitosis from Novgorod to Vladivostok overburdening Russia s crumbling health service My musings on Greece brought me to the very fundamentals of economics buying and selling Buying and selling It struck me like the slap of a live herring if we take America s purchase of the Russian territory of Alaska back in the 19th century as a legal precedent and remind the Russians of how much of their beloved oil they lost when they sold Alaska to America then we can spook the Russians by saying that a consortium of lake loving Texans who were themselves originally bought by the Americans are interested in buying the region of Latgale The Latvian Saeima can easily make this possible by another cheeky tinker of Latvia s dodgy residency permit laws Then the Russians will be so scared they will pay an exorbitant amount for it and Latvia can use the money to pay for that gratuitous gazebo in Milan that they wanted for some unknown reason Latvians will lose the lakes and most of their non citizens which would solve their language politics issues overnight and it would also open Latvian eyes to the simple reality that Estonia has far more beautiful and clean lakes than Latvia anyway But if the nostalgics in the Saeima prevail and for some reason they still pine for flourishing cities like Daugavpils that they have done so much to develop over the last 20 years then there is an alternative use for the proceeds of the Latgale sale one that could be far more effective than spending money on some silly gazebo in Milan Latvia if it so wished could do what Napoleon did when he sold the French province of Louisiana to the Americans he used the proceeds to build up a war chest gathered a vast army and marched on Moscow Sure the pedants will say that Napoleon did not ultimately succeed But Riga is closer to Moscow than Paris was So Latvia could easily use the proceeds of the Latgale sale train an army of Large Green Men and to simply take back

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/why_latvia_should_sell_latgale_to_russia/ (2016-02-13)
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  • How did a Political Prisoner Turn into a Politician?
    a famous distinction between the ethics of a saint and the ethics of a politician Needless to say in their moral choices human rights activists and dissenters stand much closer to a saint than to a politician whose choices and actions are always informed and motivated by various kinds of calculations concessions and compromises As Niccolo Machiavelli would have it Lady Fortune tends to turn her back to those who seek in politics only otherworldly and saintly things or poetic justice instead she sides with those whose wisdom lies in courageous and rational actions What he called efficacious truth verita effettuale is nothing other than successful practice which is obliged to create a normative dimension in politics and become a recognized form of wisdom Hence governare e far credere to rule means to make believe This is especially obvious in modern Russia with its nearly Manichean divide between power and moral imagination or politics and morality Andrei Sakharov was rather sceptical about the happy marriage of Realpolitik and human rights defence Some of his successors and brethren in arms such as Sergei Kovalev has been even more so insisting on the incompatibility of the two according to him either you defend the truth calling a spade a spade or you are in the realm of half truth that is Realpolitik This means that Russian human rights activists including the Memorial people can no longer put Mikhail Khodorkovsky into the same category where he while still in jail was along with the feminist and anti Putinist punk rock protest group Pussy Riot Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina and the late Sergei Magnitsky During the Vilnius Forum of Intellectuals and the Snow Meeting held on 15 16 January 2015 two major events in Lithuania s foreign policy and public diplomacy Mikhail Khodorkovsky gave a keynote address focusing on the economic sanctions imposed by the EU and the USA on Russia His idea that the sanctions make the Russian people suffer instead of dealing directly with Putin s clique and its kleptocracy made several dissenting Russian political analysts and commentators uneasy and also left quite a few Lithuanian journalists puzzled about a possible paradigm shift in Khodorkovsky s program of thought and action He did not sound apologetic vis a vis Putin and his regime he rather questioned an EU and USA policy towards the Kremlin Andrei Illarionov a former economic adviser to Putin did not hide his disenchantment with Khodorkovsky s position peppering him inconvenient questions such as the reason to use the term Crisis in Ukraine instead of saying plainly that it is an overt war and aggression of Russia against Ukraine The questions proliferated in an explosive manner leading the discussion to the issue as to whether Khodorkovsky like Alexei Navalny would oppose the return of Crimea to Ukraine and the like The trouble is that Khodorkovsky echoing Navalny in fact put this into question thus sending a mixed message to the West Khodorkovsky s answers were as clear as

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/how_did_a_political_prisoner_turn_into_a_politician_/ (2016-02-13)
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  • News search
    A Revolution in Music The Earth Wind Fire Experience returns to the Baltic with shows in Riga and Tallinn The group Earth Wind Read More A Night of European Film Stars in Riga The 27th Annual European Film Awards held on December 13th was the centerpiece of the flurry of film events in Riga at the end of 2014 which br Read More VALENTINA premieres at the Latvian National Opera The culturally rich year of events that comprised the official program of Riga 2014 and its stint as the European Capital o Read More Baltic Literature Roundup Tonight I Shall Sleep by the Wall By Giedra Radvilaviciute Translator Elizabeth Novickas Publis Read More It was chaos but this chaos was freedom Latvian writer Janis Jonevs a winner of the European Union Prize for Literature in 2014 sat down with The Baltic Times culture editor Jayde Wi Read More Dutch MEP demands explanation for Latvian President s homophobic statements Dutch Member of the European Parliament Sophie in t Veld has petitioned the Council of the European Union requesting an explanation of wh Read More Last Folio comes to Daugavpils Farida Zaletilo the curator for the Mark Rothko Arts Centre in Daugavpils sat down with The Baltic Times culture editor Jayde Will to Read More Previous 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 Next Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Subscribe A subscription to The Baltic Times is a cost effective way of staying in touch with the latest Baltic news and views enabling you full access from anywhere with an Internet connection Subscribe Now About The Baltic Times The Baltic Times is an independent monthly newspaper that covers latest political economic business and cultural events in Estonia Latvia and Lithuania

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/search/jcms/start/1380/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Baltic Literature Roundup
    of Change Compilers and editors Egle Mikalajune and Rasa Antanaviciute Publishers Lithuanian Art Museum Vilniaus dailes akademijos Publishers 2012 Over the last 150 years Vilnius has seen its share of change One of the more noticeable but easily forgotten aspects of this are a city s monuments that come and oftentimes go in a flash This bilingual book takes a look at many of the monuments throughout the recent history of Vilnius that have all but disappeared in the dusty annals of history This fascinating analysis of monuments also sheds light on the role that monuments are given after regime change and how much the cityscape can change rendering it almost unrecognizable Vilnius Architecture Guide 1900 2013 A Guide to the City s Architecture Authors Various Publisher Architekturos fondas 2013 This guidebook shows the varied styles of architecture in Vilnius over more than 100 years From the wooden house architectural gems of the Zverynas neighborhood to the more innovative concrete buildings of the Soviet era all the way up to the conceptual residential areas and surprises of today readers can find previously unpublished photos and information on many of the city s most prominent buildings The sections that focus on the first part of last century the interwar period the Soviet period and today s architecture provide an easy to follow intro to a city that continues to add new styles Comments Related Articles Vilnius gets vision Gingerbread Mania 2015 Latvian State Choir launches ambitious project for nation s centenary Subscribe Advertise Log In Please enter your username and password Forgot your password Login Related Articles ARTS EVENTS GUIDE Estonia A nation shaped by the sea The Capital of Empty Spaces Dealing with the shrinking of the Great Baltic City Italian Riga s Casa Nostra restaurant Subscribe A subscription to

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/baltic_literature_roundup_116255647054d3e89b63156/ (2016-02-13)
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  • New Lithuanian Talent Shoots for the Stars
    was dumbfounded he had heard many Lithuanian singers but this was the first one who could really sing in English without the usual eastern European accent and mistakes Her diction was not only perfect but natural almost as if she has been singing in English all her life I knew there and then that I was looking at a possible future superstar He tells of an aura surrounding Greta and how she almost had a rubber stamp on her forehead saying future pop star That was in the summer of 2013 Since then Greta has finished her studies and received a degree in Business studies from the University of Vilnius At intervals she has worked with William Butt learning all about what is expected of an international pop star It s not only a question of being able to sing There are a number of factors which make someone suitable for a career as a pop star says Butt pointing out that the days of being discovered on a street corner with a guitar are a thing of the past Today s successful artists need to be prepared for their extraordinary public roles Extreme exposure on the internet thousands of screaming fans at concerts and a sometimes absolutely brutal mass media are all part of what a successful pop artist needs to learn how to handle Greta has received thorough media training and admits today that she is fully prepared for journalists and all the intrigues that surround the public life of an entertainer I didn t realise that there is so much work involved behind the making of a recording artist but I am now ready to meet all the challenges head on said Greta who attributes her sound preparation for all these surrounding factors to her 18 month long interaction with Scandinavian musicians and producers Having a sound education in business methods Greta has been able to successfully negotiate her own contract and one only needs to spend a few minutes with her in order to understand that she unlike many young female wannabe pop stars has total control over her working situation She realises that she is not just a diva but one member of an extended team whose aim it is to create an international pop star and thereby take Lithuanian pop music out into the world Finding her surname Sliauzyte to be quite a tongue twister William Butt gave Greta the stage name Zazza after the gangster Joey Zasa in the film The Godfather 3 When asked why Greta Zazza will not be participating in the forthcoming Eurovision Song Contest the Swedish veteran smiled and replied if we had entered her for Lithuanian Eurovision she would most likely have won outright but the team around Greta didn t approve of the rules of the contest so I couldn t enter her even if I personally had wanted to According to those rules Greta would have to sing other artist s songs and they would have

    Original URL path: http://www.baltictimes.com/new_lithuanian_talent_shoots_for_the_stars/ (2016-02-13)
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