Please join me in wishing Dr. Paul Goble a speedy recovery from heart surgery.
Dr. Goble and I go way back although I think we have had possibly two conversations. He taught a Soviet Nationalities course at Georgetown in the 1991 spring semester, and it was known for its surplus of counterintuitive insights (e.g., the connection between the anti-alcohol campaign and the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh) as well as his early dismissal of class one evening after Soviet troops, in a textbook example of "disinterested fraternal assitance," fired on a protest outside a TV tower in Vilnius, Lithuania.
A few years later I invited him to be speaker at an end-of-year program for college students from the former Soviet Union. He did a great job, providing blunt assessments of the current (1998) state of things, which annoyed the Russians and my immediate boss, so the evening was a net plus for me.
Anyway, he has long been known as a voice of reason and clear analysis and I wish him a rapid return to action.