TALLIN – News media nowadays are rife with speculation about whether — if not when — U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will divide the world between them. We in Estonia and the other Baltic states now fear being consigned to Russia’s sphere of influence once more. Indeed, for many Baltic citizens, suppressed visions of torture, deportations, and flight — all experiences from our recent history — are once again bursting into our consciousness.
In the Baltics, we know well the feeling that our country is part of some great global game of money and manipulation. We haven’t forgotten the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and the other secret protocols by which Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and German leader Adolf Hitler in 1939 altered the fate of our countries almost overnight. How could we? Just a year later, the Soviet Union’s secret police began arresting and killing our parents and grandparents.