Lavrov meets Kono amid tensions over disputed Kuril islands

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov meets Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono amid increasing tensions around the disputed Kuril islands. A decades-long row over the islands lingers as Moscow and Tokyo never signed a peace treaty after World War II due to the territorial dispute over the islands invaded by the Soviet Union in the final days of the war. IMAGES

Today in History for December 27

(27 Dec 2018) Highlights of this day in history: Soviet Union invades Afghanistan; Charles Darwin sets out on round-the-world voyage; Radio City Music Hall opens in New York; James Barrie’s play “Peter Pan: The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up” opens in London. (Dec. 27)

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The 40th edition of Havana Film Festival kicks off

The 40th edition of the Havana Film Festival in Cuba will open with a vastly reduced budget, a shadow of what it was in the heady days before the Soviet Union collapsed.

Political appointee under Bush remembers the late president

“He had a great sense of humor, he had a great sense of purpose.” A political appointee in the administration of George H.W. Bush remembers the former president after his death. John Paty, once a White House staffer during the Reagan administration when Bush was vice president who later served in Bush’s Department of Labor, cites the late president’s accomplishments in the Gulf War and his diplomatic abilities during the fall of the Soviet Union.

Today in History for October 15th

(15 Oct 2018) Highlights of this day in history: Convicted Nazi war criminal Herman Goering commits suicide behind bars; World War I spy Mata Hari executed; Nikita Khrushchev ousted as Soviet Union’s leader; ‘I Love Lucy’ premieres on TV. (Oct. 15)

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Russian family preserved WWI relics despite risks

A religious icon and a flag fragment: Olga Khoroshilova’s family managed to preserve these two relics of the First World War despite the stigma and even the risks incurred by those who owned objects from the tsarist era during the turmoil of the Russian revolution and the time of the Soviet Union.

Istvan Petnehazy changed his nationality four times since WW1

Istvan Petnehazy, 86, was born and has lived his life in the same house in the same village (Mezokaszony in Hungarian, Kosino in Ukrainian), less than a kilometre into Ukraine from the Hungarian border. Although born in 1932, over a decade after the end of World War 1, he keeps mementos of the Austro-Hungarian Empire era including military photographs of his grandmother’s brothers who as teenage schoolboys were conscripted into the imperial army. Since the end of World War 1 and the break-up of the Austro-Hungarian empire, Kosino changed countries – and Petnehazy his nationality – four times: Czechoslovakia, Hungary, the Soviet Union, and finally Ukraine.