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  1. #1
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    Velvet Revolution hero playwright Vaclav Havel dead at 75

    Czech playwright Vaclav Havel who became his country's first elected president dies aged 75
    Vaclav Havel, the dissident Czech playwright who helped bring down Communism in his home country and became a national hero during the Cold War, has died in his sleep aged 75.

    The playwright, who was Czechoslovakia's former president, oversaw the country's turbulent transition into the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993.

    Havel was his country's first democratically elected president after the nonviolent 'Velvet Revolution' that ended four decades of repression by a regime he ridiculed as 'Absurdistan.'
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    Accolades....
    Havel was nominated several times for the Nobel Peace Prize, and collected dozens of other accolades worldwide for his efforts as a global ambassador of conscience, defended the downtrodden from Darfur to Myanmar.

    Among his many honors were Sweden's prestigious Olof Palme Prize and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest U.S. civilian award, bestowed on him by President George W. Bush for being 'one of liberty's great heroes.'
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    much more, with plenty of pictures, at Sunday Mail link above

    Vaclav Havel r.i.p.

  2. #2
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    Rock music, especially that of Frank Zappa and Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground, and the Czech band Plastic People of the Universe, inspired Counterculture leaders such as Vaclav Havel (the Czech playwright, human rights campaigner who later became president) and other dissidents during their struggle against Soviet rule.

    According to an interview given Punk magazine, Lou Reed claimed that when he visited Vaclav Havel after the Velvet Revolution's success, Havel presented Reed with a locally printed edition of Velvet Underground song lyrics in Czech translation. Such books had been compiled by dissidents while in prison, Havel told Reed. Havel, says Reed, explained to the surprised rock singer that the Czech counter culture had taken the name of its bloodless revolution from the name of Reed's band, Velvet Underground.
    http://counterculture.wikia.com/wiki/Velvet_Revolution

  3. #3
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    For Vaclav then (and all revolutionaries everywhere):

    The Mothers of Invention - Plastic People - YouTube

    and

    Last edited by KateB; 06-13-2015 at 10:19 AM. Reason: repair url tag.

  4. #4
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    A very brief - six paragraphs - summary by Havel about experiences while president of Czechoslovakia, and about what he believed:

    from Vaclav Havel’s Summer Meditations
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Despite the political distress I face every day, I am still deeply convinced that politics is not essentially a disreputable business; and to the extent that it is, it is only disreputable people who make it so. I would concede that it can, more than other spheres of human activity, tempt one to disreputable practices, and that it therefore places higher demands on people. But it is simply not true that a politician must lie or intrigue. That is utter nonsense, spread about by people who – for whatever reasons – wish to discourage others from taking an interest in public affairs.


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    the rest at link above



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