Jukka Rislakki The Case for Latvia
Archived Articles 07 Nov 2008  EWR
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The Estonian community might be interested in a newly published book by Jukka Rislakki – The Case for Latvia – Disinformation Campaigns against a small nation; Fourteen Hard Questions and Straight Answers about a Baltic Country. Though the title speaks only of Latvia the book contains much material about Estonia and, to a lesser extent Lithuania, as well. The book is an excellent reference source to rebut the misinformation and deliberate disinformation about the Baltic nations disseminated by the Russian government and by those, who unwittingly or not, help pass these falsehoods on. It is well worth the $39.15 US that it costs in paperback (available at www.Amazon.Com and www.BalticShop.com).

Here are some more details about the book and its author - The book is about a Baltic nation that emerged from fifty years under the Soviet Union - interrupted by a brief but brutal Nazi-German occupation and a devastating war - now a member of the European Union and NATO. Yes, but what else? Relentless accusations keep appearing, especially in Russian media, often repeated in the West: "Latvian soldiers single-handedly saved Lenin's revolution in 1917", "Latvians killed Tsar Nikolai II and the Royal family", "Latvia was a thoroughly anti-Semitic country and Latvians started killing Jews even before the Germans arrived in 1941", "Nazi revival is rampant in today's Latvia", "The Russian minority is persecuted in Latvia. . ." True, false or in-between?

The Finnish journalist and author Jukka Rislakki examines charges like these and provides an outline of Latvia's recent history while attempting to separate documented historical fact from misinformation and deliberate disinformation. His analysis helps to explain why the Baltic States (population 7 million) consistently top the enemy lists in public opinion polls of Russia (143 million). His knowledge of the Baltic languages allows him to make use of local sources and up-to-date historical research. As a neutral, experienced and often critical observer, Rislakki is uniquely qualified for the task of separating truth from fiction.

Jukka Rislakki was born in 1945. He received MA, political science, University of Finland and also graduated from the Sanoma School of Journalism. „Helsingin Sanomat” journalist; Baltic correspondent from 1998 -2001. Now lives in Jurmala, Latvia, as a freelancer and writer. Since 2008 he is also a political cartoonist at the Latvian newspaper "Diena". Jukka Rislakki has received many prizes on journalism and non-fiction writing in Finland and Latvia. He has published several books on history, the Baltic countries and popular culture as well as biographies in Finland, Latvia and the US.
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