July 4, 1992 |
Vaclav Havel, the dissident philosopher-playwright turned president, was voted out of office Friday, a victim of post-Communist Czechoslovakia's political and nationalistic fragmentation. Havel, 55, gained worldwide stature as Czechoslovakia's head of state after leading the revolution against the Communists in 1989, arguing for reconciliation and avoidance of witch hunts against the country's former totalitarian rulers.
June 22, 1992 |
President Vaclav Havel insisted that Czechoslovakia's future should be decided by a referendum--not by an agreement between Czech and Slovak leaders that could split the country without a popular vote. A referendum "is so far the only constitutional way of making such a change," he said. Czech leader Vaclav Klaus said a referendum has not been ruled out.
June 16, 1992 |
I wore one of my prized possessions when I went to vote in the California primary this month: the "Vaclav Havel for President" button my husband brought back from a scientific meeting in Prague. "If only he were running here," sighed the man behind me. Now that two-thirds of Americans polled say they want a new President, the time has come for an idea I've had since I got the button a year ago. Let's trade President Bush for President Havel.
June 13, 1992 |
"They started it," Stefan Klemens said, "now let us finish it." Klemens, a 50-year-old delivery truck driver, had just stood in line for 20 minutes Friday in Prague's fabled Wenceslas Square to sign a petition. In effect, the petition says to the Slovak republic, lately flirting with the idea of putting an end to the 74-year-old Czechoslovak state: "Go ahead. Get lost!"
June 9, 1992 |
President Vaclav Havel, the former dissident and playwright who has led Czechoslovakia since the 1989 revolution against the Communists, will withdraw his candidacy for a second term next month if the Czechoslovak federation fails to hold together, a presidential aide said Monday. The unity of the Czech and Slovak state has come under increasing doubt after weekend elections in which Slovak nationalist parties led the voting.
June 8, 1992 |
Vaclav Klaus, the likely prime minister after weekend elections in Czechoslovakia, said Sunday that he will begin negotiations today with his Slovak counterpart, Vladimir Meciar, on the formation of a new government. Klaus spoke with reporters after a two-hour meeting with President Vaclav Havel. Presidential aides said Havel instructed Klaus to begin the process of putting together a government.
May 25, 1992 |
President Vaclav Havel said Sunday that the Communist secret police tried to recruit him in the 1950s but gave up after three months. His remarks were an apparent reaction to the recent naming of journalists and other public figures as agents and informers of the once-dreaded secret police. The former leading dissident said he decided to declassify his own file.
November 3, 1991
At UCLA on Oct. 25, Czechoslovakian President Vaclav Havel delivered the Tanner Lecture on Human Values. It was not a humane message. Rather than extol economic freedom, productivity and private property, as he did elsewhere on his U.S. visit, Havel advocated a philosophy geared to destroy those very values: environmentalism. What particular values did Havel advocate? Not self-interest or the use of one's mind to solve problems. These values he incredibly ascribed to Marxism, a philosophy which created communist Czechoslovakia, where individuals sacrificed to the collective.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 25, 1991 |
Vaclav Havel, the playwright-turned-president of the Czech and Slovak Federal Republic, predicted Thursday in Los Angeles that his country's experience with democracy will transform it into a "truly free people and a truly free state." Speaking at a seminar commemorating the 200th anniversary of the U.S. Bill of Rights, Havel said the U.S. Constitution has demonstrated to his countrymen that explicit guarantees are needed to protect the rights and liberties of citizens.