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- 1 On representing Soviet versus non-Soviet "POV" in Wikipedia
- 2 From the first Soviet occupation (WWI)
- 3 From the third Soviet occupation (post WWII)
- 4 Wikisignatures
- 5 Wikipedia Interests
- 6 Brief CV
- 7 Interests
- 8 Come Visit!
- 9 International Travel
- 10 Not a Blog
- 11 Useful references
- 12 Potpourri
On representing Soviet versus non-Soviet "POV" in Wikipedia
Since my editorial positions have been denounced at times, I feel it is important that I state my position regarding this area of contention in Wikipedia. I have avoided any references to any specific editors so as to insure it is clear that I am explicitly referring to editorial positions and explicitly not to the conduct or contentions or motivations of any particular editor. Adapted from an earlier posting.
On disputes regarding Eastern European articles being "based on irreconcilable POV differences". This is an oversimplification and, ultimately, a misrepresentation.
One side contends the Soviet Union did not occupy the Baltics and Eastern Europe, minimally that "occupation" and "invasion" are "judgemental" terms, that even perfectly sourced articles fairly and accurately representing reputable sources are "cherry-picked" and "tendentiously" edited. Never producing reputable scholarship in support of their personal position (being characterized as an "editorial" one).
The other side contends that Soviet conduct in the Baltics and Eastern Europe was not glorious. That 100,000,000 people were left to suffer for half a century under a blanket of brutal Soviet totalitarianism. Always producing sources, and producing even more sources when challenged.
One side states "occupation" is merely a post-Cold War anti-Soviet (neo-Nazi) political manufacture, aka, "revisionist" history. The other side brings reputable sources to the table with factual accounts of Soviet conduct. Apparently a reputable source can state "invaded" and "occupied", but we as editors are not to repeat those words here with regard to the Baltics and Eastern Europe so as to not offend a dead empire that sent tens of millions to their deaths. Or it is demanded we represent "both sides" equally in order for an article to be "NPOV"—regardless that one side is totally discredited and unsourced (except for declarations with no substantive basis—for example, no one has yet produced a source substantiating the Russian Duma's declaration that Latvia joined the Soviet Union "legally according to international law"), and the other side is voluminously and reputably sourced.
Everywhere Wikipedia policy states that articles must be written based on reputable sources. Yet in the Baltic and Eastern European sphere, sources are apparently immaterial. Here, "nationalist" is not a term denoting patriotism or love and interest in one's heritage and history, it is a term of derision. Patriotism itself is scorned as an intellectually debased POV affliction. Sources are denounced based merely on the surnames of authors. Here, "NPOV" is demanding that Soviet propaganda be given equal time to reputable scholarship—any such scholarship counter to the Soviet "version" of history labeled as just another "POV." I myself have been attacked for my "anti-Stalinist" user box regardless that it specifically states I dispute Stalinism based on facts.
Advocacy that the Soviet version of Baltic and Eastern European history must be represented equally and fairly, and the opposition to that advocacy, is not a "content dispute." It is not about "irreconcilable POVs" colliding. It is about permitting a community of motivated and knowledgeable editors to write about their heritage and history, filling a half-century gap of missing history, rectifying half a century of Soviet falsehoods. Or not. Wikipedia stands for editorial integrity or it stands for nothing.
The most respectful—and indeed sanctifying—manner Russia can honor the memory of its fallen is to admit to the USSR's (not Russia's) occupations, particularly of the Baltics, as well as atone for the Soviet attack on Finland for failing to sign a pact of "mutual assistance." Only that admission will, once and for all, separate the ultimate sacrifices of those who died fighting Nazism from the acts of aggression and occupation which came both before and after those sacrifices. Until that separation occurs, that Soviet aggression and occupation will continue to besmirch the memories of the fallen which Russia professes to protect.
As somewhat of an aside, but related to the above, I am glad for all positive contributions to Wikipedia regarding Russian culture, geography, and history, being somewhat of a Russophile myself. I am, however, astounded how many Wikipedia editors—based on empirical evidence—equate defense of Russia's reputation with defense of the Soviet legacy and denounce any attempt at a reputable reckoning of the past as rabid nationalist Russophobic politicization. It's certainly not reflective of the mix of opinion I hear when I go two blocks up to shop at the Russian delicatessens in our neighborhood.
From the first Soviet occupation (WWI)
Enactment of the Commissariat of Justice, No. 7.
"Regardless of the fact that according to the decree of the Russian Socialist Soviet Republic, which are also effective in Soviet Latvia, the practice of advocacy is abolished, certain solicitors and barristers have as yet not suspended their activities. In order to put an end to this, the Commissariat of Justice announces:
- "All former solicitors and barristers are in future strictly forbidden to prepare petitions and documents, give advice, etc., in return for payment.
- "Within three days from the publication of this order all solicitors and barristers must take down their professional plates. (Newspapers will be forbidden to insert their advertisements.)
- "Offenders against these orders will be held responsible and delivered up to the Revolutionary Tribunal.
From the third Soviet occupation (post WWII)
These signatures (over time) are me:
- Pēters J. Vecrumba
- all topics Baltic, including
- history of and personalities through history
- occupations of the Baltic states
- history of minorities in Latvia
- Central and Eastern Europe
- Moldova (whose independence movement was once closely tied to that in the Baltics), Romania
- More generally, formerly Warsaw Pact countries, special interest in Poland, that being neatly carved in two during WWII with slightly more territory going to Stalin than Hitler (this always seems to surprise people, "but didn't Hitler start the war?"—no, Hitler and Stalin started the war together); also Ukraine
- Post Soviet Russian geopolitical activities in the "frozen conflict zone" territories, particularly Transnistria and the Baltic OMON as represented by Vladimir Antyufeyev and others (a less noble association with Latvia)
- Human Intelligence
- On Latvia and the Baltics— Own parents Latvian from Latvia, wife's parents Latvian from Latvia. An "A" student all throughout Latvian school (history, geography, literature,...) growing up. Bibliophile collecting (rare) Latvian-related materials using own web site LATVIANS.COM branching out to independent reference site Library of Baltic Heritage (LOBH.ORG) to bring them to a wider audience. More generally, a long time student of history. The best quote about me and Latvia came from my first wife, now quite (!) a few years ago... "I don't see you passionate about anything except Latvia." (Alas, I took that as a positive comment at the time!) Expansion and incorporation of LOBH.ORG slow owing to ongoing family circumstances.
- On post-Soviet geopolitics in the Russian near-abroad — My interest was first piqued when I found that Viktors Alksnis had dispatched his murderous Baltic OMON thugs to a strip of territory along the left bank of the Dniester, where Moldova's stolen industry was being sold to Russian oligarchs, ambulances were ambushed and shot up by Transnistrian security forces and attacks blamed on Moldova so as to institute martial law,... Many, many sources later, debates with Russian-hired propagandist lackeys, I've become somewhat expert on the history and current day politics of the territory inhabited by the Romanian people as well as on the wider so-named "frozen zone" conflict, principally as relates to South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
- On Indo-European culture/language — Having been inculcated from an early age that Lithuanian and Latvian are the oldest living European survivors of the Indo-European language tree, it's been a topic of a fair amount of reading and yet another enabler for my bibliomania affliction.
- On Intelligence — Spent all my childhood taking batteries of tests, wasn't quite clear to me at the time, but I was part of a long term study of preemies. I still remember the demographics box, always neatly X'ing the "Other" box and penciling in "LATVIAN." And, so, have done a bit of reading over the years. It's what's on the inside—and I'm not talking haplotypes—that makes us what we are.
Articles created and work progress
- Anatols Dinbergs—created
- Dubingiai EE on hold
- History of Riga rewrite, with slow progress on replacement sections here, eventually to be abridged and replace the history of Riga in that article, part of an effort to get that article to GA/FA status, on hold
- Jaunākās Ziņas—created
Pēters Jānis Vecrumba
- Born, raised, living in Brooklyn, New York
- Ņujorkiets, Rīdzinieks, un Kuldīdznieks
- Parents both from Latvia, father graduated Latvian Academy of Art, mother was assistant postmaster in Talsi
- Graduated Cooper Union in New York (degree in science/engineering), installed the first instance of UNIX outside Bell Labs, in 1975
- Career in information technology
- Taught structured programming at Cooper Union as adjunct professor
- Calligraphy teaching assistant at Cooper Union to Don Kunz who was protegé to Lloyd Reynolds
- Web design and implementation as both avocation and business
- And happily married to a fellow Latvian
- Mourning the loss of our border collie Abby in 2013, still finding her hair everywhere...
- Latvia, Baltics, Eastern Europe, Russia
- Art, photography, calligraphy
- Web design and UI
- LATVIANS.COM — our Latvian heritage and reference site
- CENTER FOR BAlTIC HERITAGE — CFBH.ORG contents re-merged with LATVIANS.COM as of November, 2013
- THEPRACTICALPHOTOGRAPHER.COM — Peters' and late friend Frank's photography site
|Days to Months:|
|To go some day:||* ...|
|Idea and layout tweaked from User:Martintg, who adopted it from User:Calton, who appropriated it from User:Salsb, who stole it from User:Guettarda who borrowed it from User:Coolcat
* Visiting the gravesites of my grandparents in Siberia, where they died the first winter after being illegally deported, may be delayed if the Russian Duma passes legislation criminalizing statements that the Red Army occupied the Baltic states, punishable by up to 3 years in jail, applying to both Russian citizens and foreigners; if construed to be a member of the press, 5 years.
Not a Blog
2007 August 5
I was the recipient of this unwelcome, but telling, bit of user page vandalism:
- == Russophobe Latvian Supremacist ==
I am in fact a Russophobe Latvian and Baltic Supremacist. I hate all Russians. It doesn't matter who you are, even if you are good person, I hate you, because I am ignorant.
It took 220.127.116.11 (March 31, 2007) numerous tries, e.g. , amid vigilant reverts on the part of others, to successfully delete my anti-Stalinism user box, along with inserting the above on my user page.
Yet another person who, like (at least the officially stated position of) the Russian government, confuses Being Stalinist with Being Russian and Defending Stalinism with Defending Mother Russia. So sad. I will continue to enjoy Russian friendships, Russian culture, and Russian food—especially our locally produced stolichny salad.
I suppose it's some sort of back-handed compliment that I've been deemed worthy of vandalism.
- Genocide: A Bibliography, list and notes by genocide scholar and author Adam Jones
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