When I first met Zoltan Illes in 1990, he was 29 years old and in his first month as the youngest state secretary in modern Hungarian history, working in the ministry of environment. He granted me quite a long interview and was unusually frank not only about the environmental situation in the country but also about the challenges he faced in his own position.
Whether this ceasefire or some future one proves durable, Ukraine must eventually make some very difficult decisions concerning its future. Above all, it must figure out a way of exiting the steel trap that has clamped down on its nether regions. The Crimean peninsula has already been sliced off. Should Ukraine sever another one of its own limbs in order to survive?
Poles are happier than they've been in years. More than 80 percent report that they are "very happy" or "quite happy," and that number has risen steadily since 2000. But happiness in Poland seems to derive largely from private life. There's not a lot of volunteering, and even the rates of Church attendance have been going down.
In an interview in Warsaw in August 2013, Dariusz Kalan, a Central Europe expert with the Polish Institute for International Affairs (PISM), talked about Poland's attempt to represent the region in European bodies, why young people are leaning toward conservative movements, and how Central Europe views Russia.
What do Judy Garland, Cindy Crawford, Angelina Jolie, and two horses named Romy and Rocky all have in common? I would normally come up with many witty, even snide retorts, but what I now know for sure is that they were all married at the same famous "Little Church of the West" in sunny Las Vegas. Yes, you read that right.
In the early 1990s, Poland transferred ownership and management of the public schools to local authorities. But in many of the smaller, less densely populated areas, there wasn't enough money to keep the schools going, and thousands were closed. The crisis compelled Alina Kozinska-Baldyga to abandon her Ph.D. and throw herself into a new project to save rural schools.
At the level of global affairs, there hasn't been anything like ISIS since Genghis Khan left immense piles of skulls outside conquered cities and dared the world to gang up against his Mongol horde. Genghis Khan didn't negotiate. The only word in his diplomatic vocabulary was capitulation. So too with ISIS and its dream of a caliphate of the oppressed.
I didn't have a chance to interview Munteanu in 1990 when I was in Romania because he was still in detention. But I met him last year for a conversation in Bucharest. I was surprised to discover that the activist who had captivated huge audiences of protestors for weeks at a time in 1990 never particularly relished that role.
A year after the launch of The WorldPost, the hunger for an expanded global conversation is stronger than ever. Wherever we are in the world, we're living in a golden age of engagement for news consumers. And as the media landscape has evolved, The WorldPost has evolved along with it, while staying true to our DNA of combining the best of traditional journalism with the best of an open media and new technologies.