Lecture by VU hononary doctor Jon Baldvin Hannibalsson

IIRPS VU invites you to a lecture by VU hononary doctor Jon Baldvin Hannibalsson. He will speak on topic of “Solidarity of Small nations: Utopian Dream or Practical Politics” and he will discuss the geopolitical significance of the restoration of independence of the Baltic states.

In his speech Mr. Hannibalsson will deal with many questions about the policy of the West towards the restoration of independence of the Baltic States. The headline above is a quote from a distinguished foreign minister of a NATO-member country from the early 90s.

Among those questions is why President Bush urged the Ukrainians (and by implication the Baltic nations), as late as August 1991, to keep the Soviet Union together at all cost? Were Western leaders ready to sacrifice the Baltic countries for perceived gains in dealing with the USSR on ending the Cold War?

Among other questions he answers, why Iceland disagreed with the major leaders of the time, President Bush , Chancellor Kohl, President Mitterand and the Iron Lady, Mrs. Thatcher? What is the historical heritage of Mr. Gorbachev? Why is he loved in the West, but detested at home? Can small nations change the world – if they act together – when the
major powers fail?

Jon Baldvin Hannibalsson is an Icelandic politician and diplomant. He is a former minister of finance and minister of foreign affairs. In January 1991, after the bloodshed in Vilnius, as a minister of foreign Mr. Jon Baldvin Hannibalsson started the process of reestablishing diplomatic connections between Lithuania and Iceland. Thus Iceland was the first to recognize Lithuanian independence on February 11, 1991