Tag Archive for: Russia

Biden Gets It Half (or More) Wrong … Again!

President Biden with his National Security Team in the White House Situation Room, April 13, 2024 I was going to title this post “Biden Gets It Half Right,” but on second thought it’s clear to me that the wrong part considerably outweighs the right. When, yesterday, Iran’s mullahs launched some 320 drones and cruise and […]

Speaking My Mind

Pro-Gaza demonstration at Columbia University, New York City A great deal of water has spilled over the dam since I wrote about Israel’s existential struggle against Hamas following the latter’s blood-curdling attack on October 7. Because it is a truism that silence in the face of developments you dislike amounts to complicity, today I refuse […]

A Change in My Postings — What Drives Me — And Thoughts on Ukraine and Israel vs. Hamas

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (left) and Majority Leader Chuck Schumer flank Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, in U.S. Capitol Readers of my blog and those who follow me on social media (Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter/X), know that I regularly post two things: (1) daily generally humorous items (except Sundays) related to language or writing and […]

A Bird’s-Eye View of the Wagner Group Mutiny

Wagner Group tank on the streets of Rostov-on-Don (SIBERIA painted on front — read into it what you will) Thanks to my background in Soviet/Russian affairs, I’ve been following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine with enormous interest — and great sympathy for the victims of this brutal, unprovoked aggression. The lightning-fast events of the past two […]

Feeling Grateful

If you’re like me, every so often you’ll find a nice graphic image in your Facebook feed, listing reasons why people like you and me should feel grateful: Because we have a roof over our heads and clothes on our backs Because our children have enough to eat Because we fall asleep in a warm […]

Heroism

Bon voyage! (Courtesy Matson Navigation Company) A few days ago I spotted a funny story on Facebook that reminded me of something a very brave man, Aba Taratuta, told me back in 1978 or thereabouts, when I was on the staff of the U.S. consulate-general in Leningrad (today again known by its original name, St. […]

How to Ace a Job Interview — Part 1

Back in the spring of 1968 I had a big job interview — the oral portion of the U.S. Foreign Service exam. It was a long shot, and I was not expecting to pass. Still, I hoped I’d succeed, since work as a U.S. diplomat in embassies and consulates around the world would give me […]

Russian Drinking Tales — Round 3

A year or so ago, I published two posts (here and here) related to wine, beer and another, quite exotic, alcoholic beverage in the former Soviet Union. Previously, I’d created two other posts (here and here) about experiences with vodka in the USSR. Today, I’ll briefly return to the subject in a sort of “hair […]

National Doughnut Day — Did It Roll Right Past You?

Naomi (here in a forest outside Leningrad, 1977 or 78) in the hooded snowsuit which, with its neck slightly unzipped, prompted a passerby to claim she was “naked” I hope you didn’t miss National Doughnut1 Day this past Friday. If Facebook had not brought it to my attention, I certainly would have. As it turned out, […]

Нет, Моя! No, It’s Mine!

Under Lenin’s gaze, Naomi, age 4, in blue dress at left foreground, participating in her Leningrad preschool’s celebration of the Bolshevik Revolution’s 60th anniversary, November 1977. One year ago, calling it a “somber centenary,” I wrote about the 100th anniversary of Russia’s Bolshevik Revolution (October Revolution). Now, on the revolution’s 101st anniversary (actually last Wednesday), a […]