Sample Letters

July 5, 2017

The Honorable Karen Bass
The House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Bass:

As your constituents, I and my family invite you to join the House of Representatives Baltic Caucus. The Caucus is dedicated to heightening awareness about the Baltic nations—Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania– in Congress and supports the strong relationship that America has with them. Protecting the freedom and sovereignty of the Baltic countries is in the national interest of the United States.

With the Russian attack on Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea in 2014, aggressive Russian military activity targeted to the Baltic nations and bellicose threats against the Baltic countries has substantially increased, causing the Baltic American community justifiable concern about the safety of the Baltic nations.

The United States and the Baltic nations are bound by strong ties of friendship, a common love of liberty, and the belief that every country has the right to be free. The United States has long supported the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania and has supported their independence. On July 26, we will mark the 95th anniversary of the United States de jure recognition of the Baltic nations.

Since 1991 when the three nations regained their independence, they have resumed their rightful place in the family of democratic nations. All three countries hold free, democratic and meaningful elections. The Freedom House rated them as “free” countries. They are allies of the United States in NATO. They have carried out military missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Baltic nations have participated in 26 various NATO, OSCE and UN military missions. Although, Lithuania and Latvia have not reached the two percent spending goal on defense as recommended by NATO, they will reach this goal in 2018. The defense budgets of the three countries have tripled in the last 10 years. The growth rate of budget expenditures on defense for the three nations is the fastest in Europe.

We would greatly appreciate if you would join the Baltic Caucus. By joining the Caucus, you will send a strong and clear message to Mr. Putin that United States stands with the Baltic countries.

To join the Caucus, contact Flavio Cardon, Flavio.a.cardon@mail.house.gov, Telephone: 202-225-5271, at Representative John Shimkus’ office or Kerry McBride, Kerry.mcbride@mail.house.gov, Telephone: 202-225-4176, at Representative Adam Schiff’s office. Thank you for considering our request.

Signature
Name
Postal Address (This is important)


BAFL OPEN LETTER TO DONALD TRUMP ON NATO

July 26, 2016

Dear Mr. Trump:

Since 1949 when NATO was formed, every Soviet and Russian dictator has tried to weaken or eliminate NATO: Stalin, Malenko, Bulganin, Krushchev, Brezhnev, Andropov, Chemenko, Gorbachev, Yeltsin, Medvedev and Putin, but they all failed. With your proposed policy for NATO, you might just succeed where they have failed.

Your recent remarks questioning United States support of the Baltic countries in case of Russian aggression greatly alarmed and disappointed me as well as many other Americans of Baltic heritage.

In your campaign speeches, you have promised that you will make America great again. Great in what way? Great at throwing countries that are friends and loyal allies of America under the bus?

You have promised that you will gain respect for the U.S. in the world community. Respect for what? For breaking an ironclad contract that has brought peace and security to Europe for 70 years?

You have promised that the U.S. will once again be a leader among nations. A leader of what? Leaders do not break the mission of an organization that provides security to large and small countries.

You have promised to bring change. But what kind of change? The first ever reneging of a security treaty with 27 sovereign nations?

Yes, the U.S. has served as the world’s policeman, but we have also been the world’s Samaritan. When countries are in danger of losing their precious freedom and sovereignty, to who do they turn to first for help? Not Russia, Germany, France, or China. It is “The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave“. Mr. Trump, do we really want to lose this proud legacy for the pittance that is spent on NATO?

At the Warsaw summit, NATO decided to deploy a modest number of multinational NATO troop units, including a battalion of U.S. troops, to dissuade Russians from aggression against the Baltic countries and Poland. NATO seeks to deter aggression not only by military strength, but also by projecting unity among 27 NATO allies and the U.S. Yes, Putin wants to revive the Soviet Union empire, but his most important goal is to neutralize and destroy NATO.

The Balts have fulfilled their obligations to NATO, they are not free riders. Estonia has met their two percent share, Lithuania and Latvia are on the threshold to do so. Before they were members of NATO, they participated in NATO peace keeping and combat missions in the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan. They still are with us in Afghanistan. Isn’t that worth something, Mr.Trump?

I sincerely hope that you will make a clear and definitive statement promising that you will not abandon the Baltic countries while you ponder the NATO ledger.

If there are any questions or comments, my phone number is (323) 255-4315, e-mail: ValdisP@aol.com. Thank you very much you for reading my letter.

Wishing you the best.
Respectfully,

Valdis V. Pavlovskis, President
Former U.S. Marine and Vietnam War veteran


May 30, 2016

The Hon. Ashton Carter
Secretary of Defense
Department of Defense
Washington, DC 20301

Dear Secretary of Defense:

Russia’s threat against the Baltic countries is widely recognized. The American Baltic community hopes that NATO members at the Warsaw Summit will allocate one reinforced battalion at a minimum to each of the Baltic countries. However, the Baltic American community is seriously concerned about the fact that the battalions may be stationed on a rotation basis.

It is a cardinal principle of military doctrine that the best time to attack is when the other side falls back or changes units. NATO troops need to be stationed in the Baltic countries continuously on 24/7 basis. “Rotation” suggests a temporary situation and is a handy subject of budget downsizing.

The Baltic countries are on NATO’s front lines. They will be the first responders to Russian aggression. Baltic countries are small in geographical size, but are not the smallest NATO members. The only way to guarantee that their national troops accomplish their mission is if NATO troops are on the ground with them.

The argument that the Germans and the Russians use against the permanent stationing of NATO troops in the Baltic countries is that it is prohibited by the NATO­Russia Founding Act. That argument is not valid. The Founding Act is dead. Russia decimated the Act by its numerous and gross violations of the Founding Act. Two wars, a half dozen or more broken treaties, threats and intimidation of their neighbors and much more. There is not a single pledge or commitment in the Founding Act that the Russians have not broken. And they have the nerve to say that we should still honor it!

When strategic circumstances change dramatically, as they have now, policy makers have to change the precepts of the NATO­Russia Act. NATO and the United States cannot say on the one hand that Russia’s aggression against Georgia and Ukraine has changed the rules of the game, and on the other hand leave the Founding Act untouched. NATO troops are free to be stationed permanently in the Baltic countries.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

Valdis Pavlovskis
President


President Obama Estonia Visit

August 18, 2014

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500

Re: Baltic Visit

Dear President Obama:

I was pleased to read that you will visit the Republic of Estonia in early September to affirm America’s commitment to our Baltic allies. Your visit comes at a critical time, when the fate of democratic countries once subject to brutal Soviet occupation, once again seem in question.

Your meeting with the three Baltic presidents to discuss ongoing cooperation on regional security and collective defense presents a perfect opportunity to discuss the proposed sale of Mistral warships by France to Russia. The Mistral class state-of-the-art amphibious warships – capable of simultaneously carrying helicopters, landing and hover craft, tanks or assault vehicles, and combat troops – pose a grave danger to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and other NATO members. It has been noted that such a sale would be the most significant military sale ever between a NATO member country and Russia, and would have significant implications for all NATO members. According to Baltic defense officials, the presence of the warships in the Baltic Sea will seriously impact the balance of military capabilities of the Baltic countries and Poland, with Russian naval forces clearly gaining additional strength in terms of speed, range, maneuverability and fire power. This will necessitate additional assets and coastal defense by NATO allies which may easily exceed the cost of the two Mistral ships.

I urge you to consider the option to halt the sale of the Mistral warships to Russia and allow France to lease or sell the Mistral warships to NATO. A NATO buy is the only logical solution and is precisely the kind of unified political response that Europe needs to make at this time. Not only would this option provide a financial and political exit strategy for France, but would provide our NATO allies a tremendous boost in solidarity, while enhancing NATO assets as well.

We thank you for making the visit to Estonia a priority at this critical time. We look forward to hearing about your discussions and hope that they are positive and substantive.

Sincerely,

Valdis Pavlovskis
President
Baltic American Freedom League


August 26, 2014

Ms. Susan Rice
National Security Advisor to the President
National Security Council
White House
Washington, DC 20520

Dear Ms. Rice:

On August 23, the 25th anniversary of The Baltic Way, President Obama on behalf of the people of the United States reaffirmed America’s “enduring commitment to the security” of the Baltic nations. The Baltic American community thanks and applauds the President for his clear, strong and definite statement regarding U.S. Baltic relations.

Ever since the Baltic nations reclaimed their independence, Russia has been a discomforting neighbor. It has continuously threatened Baltic sovereignty by words and deeds It has initiated a succession of economic sanctions, domestic political subversion, propaganda offensives, military harassment and threats.

The latest and most serious of the threats propagated by President Putin comes via the courtesy of the French government: France is about to sell two Mistral class aircraft carrier warships to Russia.

Our President, most members of Congress, the Defense and State Departments, political analysts and western media commentators have unequivocally concluded that sale of the state-of-the-art assault warships to Russia will substantially increase President Putin’s power projection capabilities. Most disturbingly, many foreign affairs specialists have with equal assurance declared that after Ukraine, the primary targets of Mr. Putin’s imperial expansion program are the Baltic nations.

The heavily armed Russian warships, specifically built for land and air invasions, patrolling off the coast of the Baltic nations is a replay of nineteenth century gunboat diplomacy, and greatly aggravate the current situation promoting instability, disruption and divisiveness in the Baltic region. The Baltic American community is alarmed at this, and we strongly urge you to use the resources of your office to stop the French government from selling the warships to Russia.

Stopping the sale will clearly and strongly, in no uncertain terms signal to that President Putin that his military adventurism stops on NATO’s borders.

We support the option recommended by Representative Engel and a group of House members that NATO either lease or purchase the warships from France for its own use. This will provide a financial and political exit for France, and tremendously improve the solidarity of the Alliance.

Thank you for considering my request.

Valdis V. Pavlovskis
Acting President


Letter 1

His Excellency Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Secretary General

North Atlantic Treaty Organization

Boulevard Leopold III, 1110

Brussels, Belgium

Dear Mr. Secretary General:

We are writing to express our deep concerns regarding France’s contract to supply two Mistral warships to the Russian Federation this fall and to propose a solution to this vexing problem. In light of Russia’s recent aggression against Ukraine, we believe that the sale would send the wrong signal to President Putin – that it is “business as usual” – and would enhance Russia’s military capabilities, even as President Putin has threatened further military actions against Russia’s neighbors.

President Putin’s invasion and seizure of Ukrainian territory was a blatant violation of international law and of Russia’s commitments to Ukraine. While there was a time following the end of the Cold War when we thought Russia was acting more cooperatively and could be a partner in European stability, that period has unfortunately come to an end. It is critical that NATO countries no longer provide powerful weapons to enhance Russia’s a ability to intimidate or even invade its neighbors.

In this regard, we believe that France and other NATO allies should avoid selling or transferring to Russia military items which would significantly increase its capabilities. We, therefore, urge France to cancel the sale of the two advanced Mistral-class amphibious assault and helicopter carrier ships. These ships would enhance the very expeditionary capabilities Russia used to capture Crimea, including rapid deployment of troops, armor, and helicopter gunships against poorly defended areas in Ukraine and other states in the region. Each ship has the capacity to carry 700 troops, 60 armed vehicles, four landing craft, and 16 helicopters – a formidable component of a military campaign.

We appreciate the reported willingness of the government of France to make a final decision on the sale of the ships this fall. We also understand the financial ramifications for France of cancelling its contract. The ships reportedly cost $1.6 billion and their construction employs hundreds of workers.

Therefore, we suggest that NATO collectively purchase or lease the warships as a common naval asset. As mentioned earlier, the purchase would send a strong signal to President Putin that the NATO allies will not tolerate or in any way enable his reckless moves. In addition, such a purchase would rapidly enhance NATO capabilities at a moment when many Allies have been cutting defense expenditures and greatly reassure Alliance members and partners in Central and Eastern Europe who feel most vulnerable by this force multiplier in the hands of the Russian military. Finally, we would point out that there is ample precedent for NATO to purchase shared assets, including the Alliance’s fleet of E-3A AWACS aircraft.

Mr. Secretary General, we believe that NATO’s joint acquisition of the Mistrals truly would be a win-win-win move – for France, for NATO, and for Ukraine and other states in the region under Russian pressure. We ask that you give serious consideration to our proposal and look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Eliot L. Engel
Ranking Member
Committee on Foreign Affairs

Michael Turner
Chairman
U.S. Delegation to NATO Parliamentary Assembly

William R. Keating
Ranking Member
Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats

Adam Kinzinger
Member Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade


Letter 2

June 5, 2014

His Excellency François Hollande

President of the French Republic

Élysée Palace

55, Rue du Faubourg

Saint-Honoré

75008 Paris, France

Dear President Hollande:

Your state visit to the United States in February highlighted the strong bilateral ties between our two countries and our shared vision for freedom, peace, and security. Since your visit, Russia’s aggression toward Ukraine and other neighboring states has challenged the international community to take a principled stand against those who wish to disrupt the international rule of law and the rights of sovereign nations. We thank you for your strong statements publicly condemning these belligerent acts by the Russian Federation.

In light of the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine and illegal annexation of Crimea, we are writing specifically to urge you to cancel the delivery of two Mistral-class warships to the Russian Navy and end all cooperation on future construction. These military warships are designed explicitly for the type of invasion that occurred in Ukraine. Any further arms sales from the French government to the Russian military would enhance Russia’s power projection, ability to intimidate neighboring countries, and illegally seize sovereign territory. We fully appreciate that cancelling such contracts may have consequences; similarly, we are urging our own government to suspend its agreements with the Russian defense contractor Rosoboronexport.

Together we must send an unwavering message to the Russian Federation that its actions constitute a direct violation of international law and will not be tolerated. We ask that you join us in demonstrating to President Putin, by suspending arms deals with his government, that our nations will not be complicit in altering borders by force. The outcome in Ukraine is critically important to the credibility of free, democratic nations. Again, we thank you for your leadership on this issue.

Sincerely,

CHRISTOPHER MURPHY
United States Senator

RON JOHNSON
United States Senator

RICHARD DURBIN
United States Senator

JEANNE SHAHEEN
United States Senator

AMY KLOBUCHAR
United States Senator

EDWARD MARKEY
United States Senator


Letter 3

May 9, 2014

President Barack Obama

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC

Dear President Obama,

We are writing to express our shared concern over the ongoing crisis in Ukraine and particularly over the military assistance our NATO ally, France, plans to provide Russia in the coming months.

As you know, in the midst of Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and its continued training and arming of militants in Eastern Ukraine, France is scheduled to deliver two Mistral Carriers to the Russian Navy. According to the French Defense Ministry, the first vessel, called The Vladivostok, is due to be delivered to the Russian Navy in October. The second ship is called The Sevastopol, named after the port city on the Crimean Peninsula that Moscow annexed in March, and is due soon after.

While the French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian inconceivably describes these warships as nothing more than “civilian hulls,” these ships will provide Russia with newly-bought, advanced military power projection in Eastern Europe, the Southern Caucasus, and the Baltics. Each Mistral has the capacity to carry 16 helicopters, four landing craft, 60 armored vehicles, 13 tanks, and up to 700 soldiers.

In fact, in 2008, the head of the Russian navy, Commander Vladimir Vysotsky, stated that victory in the Georgian conflict would have been finished “in just 40 minutes” had they been equipped with the French-made Mistrals. Mr. Putin himself said “I can assure you that if we purchase this armament, we will use it wherever we deemed necessary.”

After striking the deal in 2010, then-French President Nicolas Sarkozy said “We have to consider Russia a friend and have to work with her to build a vast area of security and prosperity together.” Unfortunately, Russia’s aggressive stance toward its neighbors and its illegal efforts to destabilize countries in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus prove otherwise.

Mr. President, Members of the NATO Alliance cannot continue to arm Russia – let alone arm her with high-tech military equipment that will only abet its efforts to undermine Eastern European governments that aspire to be modern, European democracies. France, and all NATO allies, must make tough choices when responding to this new, aggressive Russian foreign policy. We call on you to demand France suspend the sale of these two Mistral Carriers to Russia. Let’s work together to strengthen the NATO Alliance, not the Russian military.

We thank you for your time and attention to this matter.
Sincerely,

Mark Warner
United States Senator

Mark Kirk
United States Senator

Adam Kinzinger
Representative U. S. House of Representatives

Bill Keating
Representative U.S. House of Representatives


Letter 1

June 20, 2014

The Honorable John Smith
The U.S. Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Senator Smith:

I would greatly appreciate if you would exert pressure on the French government to cancel the delivery of the Mistral aircraft carriers to Russia.

Russia’s President Putin has, in recent years, shown many times over that Russia can not be trusted. He is set on reconstituting the borders of the Soviet Union. The Baltic countries have only recently joined NATO and are now concerned about their own political independence and security in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Georgia and Ukraine.

These ships will give Russia an unprecedented mobility and maneuverability to attack, invade and occupy their neighboring countries very quickly.

The presence of these amphibious warships in the Baltic Sea will present the threat of military incursion in their political affairs and economic development.

Thank you

Sincerely,

Name
Address
Signaature
E-mail
Telephone Number


Letter 2

June 21, 2014

Ms. Susan Rice
National Security Advisor to the President
National Security Council
The White House. DC 20500
Dear Ms. Rice:

I am writing to request that you urge the French government not to sell the four Mistral warships to Russia.

If the sale is completed, it would be as if to reward Russia for attacking and occupying Crimea. It would only encourage them to maintain their large number of combat-ready troops and equipment on the Russian-Ukrainian border to intimidate the Ukrainian people and government.

The sale will provide Russia with ability to execute quick military intrusions from the sea against the coastal countries of the Baltic and Black Seas. As the Chief of Russian Naval forces remarked, if Russia would of had Mistrial warships at the time of the action against Georgia, it would have taken the only 40 minutes instead of 26 hours to complete the invasion.

Thank you for considering my request. I would also appreciate if you discussed this matter with President Obama.

Sincerely,

Signature
Name
E-mail
Address


Letter 3

June 14, 2013

The Honorable Fred Brown, Ranking Member
Foreign Affairs Committee
House of Representatives
Washington DC, 20515

Dear Representative Brown:

As your constituent, I respectfully request that you urge the French to stop the delivery of the Mistral warships to Russia.

It is preposterous for a NATO member to sell high-tech assault war equipment to a potential adversary. This will set a precedence and soon there will be a number of NATO nations selling instruments of war to non-members that are potential adversaries. It will be the death of NATO.

These ships patrolling off the coasts of the new European democracies will be used to bully and threaten, as Russia is doing already by other means. The old “gunboat diplomacy” of the 19th century will be repeated.

The Mistral warships can deploy 800 marines, 40 assault vehicles and 16 helicopters as well as acting as a floating command center. This means that NATO will need to be continuously on alert so as to be able to respond in matters of few hours to an invasion.

Furthermore by the sale of the warships to Russia, France has breached a good faith understanding with its NATO allies. It will send a message to Russia that France and most of the NATO countries acquiesce to Russia’s increasingly bellicose and lawless behavior.

I hope that you will take seriously the negative impact that these warships, in Russian hands, will have on Russia’s neighbors. Thank you.

Signature,
Name
Address
E-mail
Telephone

P.S. Furthermore, Russian neighbors, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, as well as other NATO members, have expressed strong opposition to the delivery of the warships. I hope the United States will join them.


Letter 4

June 27, 2014

The Honorable Jane Brown Smith
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Brown Smith:

On behalf of the members of _________, I urge you to stop the delivery of the French Mistral warships to Russia.

In light of Russia’s invasion of Georgia and Ukraine, which violated the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of the two countries as well as Russia’s own international obligations, the sale of major offensive weapons system to Russia should be canceled. The sale of major advanced offensive warships to Russia will have a serious destabilizing effect on the Baltic and the Black Sea regions and other parts of the former Soviet Union.

The Russian Navy’s Commander-in-Chief when talking about the Mistral warships boasted that: ” In the conflict [against Georgia in 2008] in August last year, a ship like that would have allowed the (Russian) Black Sea Fleet to accomplish its mission in 40 minutes, not 26 hours, which is how long it took us.” This is clearly the reason why Russia wants the ships. They are useful in amphibious assaults on maritime neighbors, not for humanitarian reasons as Mr. Putin claimed.

Furthermore, a number of Russian neighbors, including the Baltic countries, Poland, Georgia and Ukraine strongly oppose the sale of Mistral warships to Russia.

We urge you to take steps to stop the delivery of the warships. We support Congressman Eliot Engel’s suggestion that NATO purchase the four warships

Thank you.

Signature
Name
Address
E-mail


Letter 5

June 26, 2014

Seders Address

The Honorable Adam Schiff
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Mr. Schiff:

As you well know, France is now building and is about to deliver to Russia the first of four Mistral class state-of-the-art amphibious warships–capable of simultaneously carrying helicopters landing and hover craft, tanks or assault vehicles, and combat troops. Including are hospital beds, and combat command and communication systems. The ships are armed with anti-aircraft rockets and rapid-firing artillery.

Will they be deployed in the Baltic Sea to threaten the Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to comply with Kremlin dictates, or even be used against them? President Putin has stated that: “We will reserve the right to use them where and when we consider necessary.”

I believe that France–the nation of Liberte’, ‘Egalite’, Fraternite’–is capable of better. I hope it will reconsider the sale of these ships to Russia, which has long history of aggression and ongoing threats against its maritime neighbors. I hope and pray that France will keep the Mistral warships within the NATO family of freedom loving nations that rely on each other for defense, and not betray its friends and allies by selling them to Russia, Baltic liberty is at stake.

As your constituent and a Baltic American, I truly hope that you, Representative Schiff, will do everything possible to see that this sale to Russia is not consummated. Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely yours,

Teodors Liliensteins

E-mail Address


Black Ribbon Day Letter

The Honorable ___________
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Member of the Baltic Caucus:

The Baltic American Freedom League and the Baltic American community respectfully requests you to cosponsor the Black Ribbon Day Resolution (H. Res. 302). The Resolution was introduced by the Cochairmen of the House Baltic Caucus, Representatives John Shimkus and Adam Schiff.

The Resolution expresses congressional support to designate August 23 as Black Ribbon Day. It would be an act of recognition and respect of the millions of innocent civilian victims, including children, of Nazi Germany and Communist Soviet Union.
August 23 is the date of the signing of the sinister Hitler-Stalin Pact that divided Europe between Germany and the Soviet Union. The Pact paved the way for war and totalitarianism to rage throughout Europe inflicting an unprecedented human catastrophe–war, mass murder, economic damage, starvation, poverty and brutality.

Remembering these events is becoming ever more important. Decades have passed since the destruction of Nazi Germany and the fall of the Berlin wall. Generations of people know little of the magnitude of these events. Black Ribbon Day will serve as a reminder of the evils of dictatorships. Black Ribbon Day has been adopted and commemorated by Canada and by 12 European countries including the Baltic countries.

To sign on as a cosponsor of H. Res. 302, contact Ms. Joy Henrichs of Representative John Shimkus’ staff (5-5271) or Mr. Timothy Bergreen of Representative Adam Schiff’s staff (5-4176). Thank you.

Sincerely,

Name/Signature

Address
Telephone Number/E-Mail [Optional}


Follow Up Letter to Staff Person

Dear Ms. ________,
On February 4 I faxed a letter from the Baltic American Freedom League to Representative _________ asking him to cosponsor the Black Ribbon Day Resolution (H.Res. 302), introduced by the Cochairmen of the House Baltic Caucus–Representatives Adam Schiff and John Shimkus.

It is an important resolution to the Baltic American community, and I would sincerely appreciate if you would see that Representative _________ receives our letter. The resolution supports the designation of August 23 as a day of remembrance to commemorate, to remember and honor the victims of Nazi Germany and Communist Soviet Union. The date, August 23, was selected because it is the date of the signing of the sinister 1939 Hitler-Stalin Pact in which the two dictators divided Europe in spheres of influence which then enabled Hitler to start World War II.

The Pact not only brought war to Europe, but to the Baltic people and the Central and Eastern Europeans, it brought a half century of tyranny, terror, mass deportations, and the first ethnic cleansing in Europe. Millions of immigrant families in America have been directly affected by Nazi and Soviet atrocities. The Black Ribbon Day would let them know that the victims are not forgotten. It would also serve as a reminder and warning to tyrants that their atrocities against humanity will not be forgotten nor forgiven.

Canada and ten European nations, including the Baltic countries and Poland, have adopted similar commemorative resolutions as has the European Parliament and the European Union. It is America’s turn now. As of today, we have 42 cosponsors.

As you know, the Baltic American Freedom League is a national organization headquartered in Southern California. It is an all volunteer non-profit organization. Its membership consists of Baltic American organizations and individual members.

The contact persons for the H.Res. 302 are Mr.Timothy Bergreen of Representative Schiff’s office, 5-4176 and Ms. Joy Hendrichs at Mr. Shimkus’ office, 5-5271. The Baltic American community hopes that Mr. _________ will support us and sign on as cosponsor of H.Res. 302. Please let me know of his decision. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Valdis Pavlovskis
President
Baltic American Freedom League

Address
Telephone Number
E-Mail


Follow Up Letter To Representative’s Staff Member

Dear Mr.____________,

On February 10 I faxed a letter from the Baltic American Freedom League to Representative _______ asking her to cosponsor the Black Ribbon Day Resolution (H.Res. 302), introduced by the Cochairmen of the House Baltic Caucus–Representatives Adam Schiff and John Shimkus.

It is an important resolution to the Baltic American community, and I would sincerely appreciate if you would see that Representative ________ receives our letter.

H. Res. 302 supports the designation of August 23 as a day of remembrance for the victims of Nazi Germany and Communist Soviet Union. The date, August 23, was selected because it is the anniversary date of the signing of the sinister 1939 Hitler Stalin Pact in which the two dictators divided Europe in spheres of influence, enabling Hitler to start World War II with Stalin following month later by attacking occupying a third of Poland…

The war brought the Baltic people and the Central and Eastern Europeans a half century of tyranny, terror, mass deportations and killings, and the first ethnic cleansing in Europe since the Middle Ages. The Resolution will demonstrate to the families of the victims, now living in America, that the victims of crimes against humanity will not be forgotten nor forgiven.

H. Res. 301 is especially relevant today to the situation in Ukraine. It will remind the West of the Holodomor in which at a minimum 2.5 million people including children were murdered by the Soviet regime’s orchestrated and induced famine. It will show the Ukrainians that we are with them and generate support for Ukrainian pro-democracy movement.

As of today the Resolution has 46 cosponsors.

The Baltic American Freedom League is a national, non-profit, all volunteer organization incorporated in 1981, whose members include individuals and organizations.

The contact persons for H. Res. 302 are Mr. Timothy Bergreen of Representative Schiff’s office, 5-4176 and Ms. Joy Hendrichs at Mr. Shimkus’ office, 5-5271.

Thank you for helping us.

Sincerely,

Valdis Pavlovskis
President
Baltic American Freedom League
Telephone Number
E-Mail