Daniel N. Hoffman

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People gather at The Memorial of Victims of Communism to mark the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism, also known as Black Ribbon Day, in Tallinn, Estonia, Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018. To Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians, Russia's belligerence toward Ukraine has some worried that they could be the Kremlin's next target. The tensions are bringing back memories of dictatorship and oppression. (AP Photo/Raul Mee)

With Russia having begun an all-out invasion of Ukraine on Wednesday night, the U.S.-led NATO alliance should reflect on the significance of Estonia’s independence day, Feb. 24. After czarist Russia collapsed in the wake of WWI, Estonia fought back a Soviet Red Army invasion. It enjoyed two decades of independence until Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union signed the infamous Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, which divided the Baltic States, Poland and Finland into their respective spheres of influence.

Sealing off Estonia from the outside world behind its totalitarian iron curtain, the Soviet Union forcibly deported tens of thousands of Estonians to Siberia while inflicting massive environmental damage and decimating Estonia’s living standards.…  Seguir leyendo »

In this photo provided by the North Korean government, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un attends a ruling party congress in Pyongyang, North Korea Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021. Independent journalists were not given access to cover the event depicted in this image distributed by the North Korean government. The content of this image is as provided and cannot be independently verified. (Korean Central News Agency/Korea News Service via AP)

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un resurfaced last week at the eighth Congress of his ruling Workers’ Party, where he admitted “almost all sectors” of his country’s economy had fallen short of their goals. Speaking for nine hours, Mr. Kim also said North Korea should bring its “arch-enemy” — the United States — “to its knees.”

Mr. Kim’s weapons of mass destruction program, which has long denied North Korea a path to economic prosperity because of punitive sanctions, reflects the internal contradiction of his policy of “byngjin” — developing the economy while simultaneously expanding its nuclear weapons deterrent. Mr. Kim has embraced his family’s tradition of seeking to hoodwink the world into lifting economic sanctions in return for empty denuclearization promises.…  Seguir leyendo »

Saudi's detention of innocent son and daughter of Saad al Jabri is a gross human rights violation

In July, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio joined three Democratic colleagues, Patrick Leahy of Vermont, Tim Kaine of Virginia and Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, in a letter to President Trump urging action on a case that has gotten far too little media attention — the apparent detention of the son and daughter of Saad al Jabri.

The lawmakers expressed grave concern that Omar and Sarah al Jabri were being held against their will to compel their father’s return from Canada to Riyadh to face charges of corruption.

Mr. al Jabri served under former Minister of Interior Muhammad bin Nayef (widely known as MBN), the onetime next-in-line for the Saudi throne who has been displaced by now-Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman (MBS).…  Seguir leyendo »