Talk:Arnold Meri

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Great Patriotic War vs World War II[edit]

To those of you who are engaged in an edit war over nomenclature, I have the following questions:

  • Is the Great Patriotic War something completely separate from WWII, making it wrong or misleading to use the latter term?
  • Wikipedia articles are supposed to written for a general audience. Are readers helped significantly in their understanding if the term Great Patriotic War is used instead of the more general WWII?
  • Isn't the term WWII a bit more NPOV than Great Patriotic War? (GPW to me has some rather one-sided, jingoistic connotations of Stalin's USSR single-handedly saving the world from fascism, with the accompanying claims of perpetual moral high ground for the USSR/Russia thereafter.)

I am interested in hearing responses from both sides, so that perhaps a consensus can be reached. — Zalktis 08:52, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

Well Arnold Meri himself calls it WWII, see his quote on the article page. Martintg 09:20, 28 August 2007 (UTC)

In the quotation, Meri does not mention which side he took himself. If he joined the Red Army in 1940 (as said in the article), he voluntarily joined the pro-Hitler coalition. The term GPW was invented just to hide uneasy facts like this one. Lebatsnok (talk) 14:06, 27 May 2008 (UTC) The term GPW was used to distinguish from WWI which was considered "imperialistical". Besides it was indeed a great tragedy for Russian people and is perfectly suited to denote the war on Eastern front from 1941 through 1945. (talk) 19:20, 25 July 2008 (UTC)

Whatever. This does not revert the fact that A. Meri voluntarily joined the pro-Nazi Red army in 1940. And even more obviously, there was no "GPW" in 1940: the great tragedy (a.k.a. Russian invasion) had come to Poland and a number of other countries -- but not to Russia yet. Had they not helped Hitler destroy Polish army in 1939, and had they not made every effort to make all neighboring countries their enemies, it would all have been much easier for Russia in 1941. -- And to distinguish WWII from WWI, why not call it WWII?? Lebatsnok (talk) 13:22, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

AP obituary[edit]

Estonian accused of post-WWII genocide dies. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 10:48, 29 March 2009 (UTC)

Military funerals[edit]

Military funerals are rare in peacetime. "Ex-military" is not a reason to expect that a person would be given one; both under Soviet regime and in modern Estonia, military service is mandatory, so pretty much everybody has got some military experience. Take Urmas Ott, for example. Like most Estonian males of his generation, he was illegally drafted to the Soviet Army, and served near Sverdlovsk. Recently, Ott died and was buried -- and there's no reason at all to say that he didn't get a military funeral.

Thus, we should only be say when somebody *got* military funeral, not when somebody *didn't* get one. Otherwise, the result is non-neutral as in the old joke of a ship's log:

  • October 18. The boatswain was drunk today. Signed, The Captain.
  • October 19. The captain was sober today. Signed, The Boatswain.

ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 09:22, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

Military funerals in peacetime for highly decorated individuals are rare? I would like a source for this. Additionally, the BBC saw it notable enough to mention that he was buried without military honours, so there is no reason that we should not mention it also in his article. --Russavia Dialogue 10:53, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
Well, BBC found the fact notable. Unless we can establish that BBC is somehow biased and put an undue weight on this info the info is notable for us as well Alex Bakharev (talk) 11:00, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
BBC is governed by a different set of principles. For example, BBC considers it very important to colour-coördinate its anchormen's and anchorwomen's clothing in such a manner as not to appear biased towards or against any political party. Wikipedia does not do that. On another hand, Wikipedia is oriented towards creating an encyclopædia -- that is, a broad overview of the world knowledge -- rather than report news minutiæ. It's no wonder that BBC would mention details that just do not fit into encyclopædia -- just like it's no wonder that BBC doesn't go around quoting whole articles from Wikipedia. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 14:25, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I don't know why Russavia insists on stating Meri was laid to rest "without military honours", there was nothing stopping the military attache from the Russian embassy attending the funeral to bestow the requisite military honours on behalf of the Russian federation (as legal successor to the Soviet Union). I'm not sure why Russavia would want to highlight this omission. Martintg (talk) 11:31, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
And I don't see why some want to exclude it. It's not like it is not verifiable, and the BBC saw fit to publish it. Also comparing a highly decorated soldier to a person who there is no evidence of even serving in the military, much less not highly awarded, is like comparing apples and oranges. Also, you need to argue against excluding verifiable information from articles, not the other way around. --Russavia Dialogue 12:00, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I'm too busy to create the wikiality on that subject on my own. Tell you what: I'll give you a source, and you can add it into Urmas Ott.
Here you go: [1]. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 14:30, 4 April 2009 (UTC)
I think the BBC is plainly wrong here. Meri received the highest level of military honours that the Russian Federation could provide, without breaching Estonian sovereignty. What did the BBC expect? A 42 gun salute in the Moscow Kremlin, like the one on the day Tallinn was liberated – the one Lennart Meri was listening to on the radio in Siberia?
For what its worth, it seems the the funeral was a kind of a state funeral – the Russian Federation and the Embassy in Tallinn paid the bill. Maybe that is what you are entitled to, if you receive the Order of Honour posthumously. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 15:58, 6 April 2009 (UTC)


I've removed some text regarding Meri's activity in the lead because:

  1. the lead should be a summary and overview of the article
  2. notability of the Estonian Anti-Fascist Committee is being challenged via AfD (Russavia added a notability tag to the article, go figure)
  3. the ref given failed verification

--Martintg (talk) 20:37, 4 April 2009 (UTC)

This is notable, as it is mentioned in Dmitry Medvedev's telegram. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 15:05, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
It is notable I think, I agree Petri. Also Martintg, I added the notability tag, because all unsourced articles which don't assert notability should have it on. --Russavia Dialogue 15:13, 5 April 2009 (UTC)


In {{Communism}}, Karl Marx, Joseph Stalin, and Mao Zedong are listed side by side. Are any of them denigrated by this company? Possibly, but it's no matter when classifying these people. What matters is what sources say. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 16:44, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Unfortunately, Digwuren's POV isn't a source. Plain and simple. One needs sources before they can delve into such things. --Russavia Dialogue 16:49, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Enough? ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 17:04, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Got any from English sources? Or non-Estonian sources? Or even scholarly sources? Or do you only have journalistic opinions? --Russavia Dialogue 17:10, 7 April 2009 (UTC)
Mart Laar is not a journalist, by a long shot. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 17:11, 7 April 2009 (UTC)
Neither is Vladimir Zhirinovsky. I'm sure I can find a nice collection of his musings regarding the Baltic states and its politicians, where the epithet "fascist" will be the most decent one. Wikipedia:Reliable sources clearly states: opinion pieces are only reliable for statements as to the opinion of their authors, not for statements of fact. Óðinn (talk) 12:59, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Mart Laar is a reputed historian, and an expert in Soviet affairs. Whoever gave you the idea that Vladimir Zhirinovsky might be comparable to him? ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 14:42, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Expert? Well, I suppose some people still consider Dubya to be an expert on the Iraqi WMDs... Dubious reputations of a self-crowned king aside, is there any hope of seeing some sort of scholarly sources that originate outside of Eesti? Óðinn (talk) 15:18, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
No idea what's Mart Laar got to do with all this, but he definitely is a historian. First: he's got PhD in history. Does your favorite Zhirinovsky have secondary education? Second, according to ISI Web of science, his works have been cited by other historians in best scholarly journals for over 50 times. This is not a small number for a historian. -- So, definitely, experts on history call him an expert on history. Whatever that's got to do with the main topic. Lebatsnok (talk) 13:38, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
Why would you suggest applying such a meaningless criterion? WP:RS does not support dividing sources into goats and sheep in this manner. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 16:33, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Why do you think not much credibility is given to the Korean Central News Agency regarding its version of the Kwangmyŏngsŏng-2 mission? Óðinn (talk) 17:20, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Because North Korea is on the 172nd place in the Worldwide Press Freedom Index? Check Estonia's rank and try again. Ptrt (talk) 19:05, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
How odd. And yet here we have a reputed historian and an expert in Soviet affairs Rein Ruutsoo accusing the state-financed Estonian media of colluding with the Kaitsepolitsei whenever it picks another target for its witch hunt. How very odd. Óðinn (talk) 20:11, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
What is odd? Everybody is free to voice (and print) his/her opinion. But as WP:RS... let's only say that I really hoped we'd never see the day here in WP when Stolitsa or Kesknädal is seriously considered as source. :) Ptrt (talk) 20:54, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Well, this Orwellian notion that while all opinions are equal, some are more equal than the others is very odd indeed. Óðinn (talk) 03:49, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
Stolitsa is the propaganda weekly of the Big Brother. Everybody knows it. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 07:29, 9 April 2009 (UTC)
Of course. And Ruutsoo is a paid agent of FSB and a secret agent of Nochnoy Dozor. Óðinn (talk) 08:13, 9 April 2009 (UTC)

Which image?[edit]

Arnold Meri 22 September 2008.jpg
Arnold meri 05.jpg

Which image should we use? I think the new photo is far better. -- Petri Krohn (talk) 08:57, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

I think the second image, it shows him in the prime of his life when he achieved his notability. --Martintg (talk) 09:56, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
The second image has quite dodgy copyright license and is in fact nominated for deletion on commons Alex Bakharev (talk) 07:16, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
The image appears to be tagged as PD-Ukraine, which is valid as it is highly likely that images of Heros of the Soviet Union would have been published in the Ukrainian SSR. --Martintg (talk) 06:57, 28 May 2009 (UTC)