The Power of Positive Memory Loss

The Baltics' most innovative economy is too busy to worry about its Soviet past

With its 6-ft-thick walls and squalid cells, the Patarei sea fortress on the edge of Tallinn, capital of the Baltic republic of Estonia, has long borne witness to the brutality of occupation. Built in 1840 by Russian Czar Nicholas I, it was used as a prison and execution site by both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. But one Friday night not long ago the fortress was pulsating with hundreds of youngsters--some speaking Russian, others Estonian--packed into the place for an all-night techno rave. "It was an experiment, the first time we've done this," says Andrus Villem, the Patarei's project manager,...

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