Tag: Czech Republic

Václav Havel: The Political Dissident Who Founded the Czech Republic

 

Our historical forgotten American articles are generally impressive figures, but there are very few one might accurately call “cool.” This is an exception in two ways. Václav Havel, the founder of the modern-day Czech Republic (also known as Czechia) is undoubtedly cool by any definition of the word. A political dissident under the Soviet-backed regime, he served hard time in Communist prisons rather than bend the knee to their authority. His moral courage acted as a beacon of hope for the entire resistance movement behind the Iron Curtain. As you’ve gathered by now, the second exception is that Havel is not American, but his fight against communism earned himself an honorable mention in our “Forgotten Americans” section.

Havel was born in Prague in 1936 to a wealthy and prominent family in then Czechoslovakia, a nation newly independent from the Austro-Hungarian Empire made up of the future Czechia and Slovakia. His paternal line comprised real estate developers, while his mother was the daughter of a famous diplomat and journalist. As one might imagine, this did not make his life easy after the Czechoslovakian Communist coup d’etat of 1948.

Indeed, the new Communist regime dictated his life path largely on the basis of his class background. He took gymnasium classes while working as an apprentice chemical lab assistant. Due to political and social reasons, none of the postsecondary humanities programs would accept him as a student. He was accepted into a prestigious economics program but dropped out after two years. He entered into compulsory military service in 1957 and left in 1959.

The Czech Republic Gets Its Very Own 2nd Amendment

 

From N-TV (all translations are mine):

The Czech Republic is adding the right to keep and bear arms to its constitution. After the Chamber of Representatives approved the amendment, the Senate, the Second Chamber of the Parliament, approved it with a considerable majority. The Constitution of the EU-Member State will contain the following sentence in the future:  “The right to defend one’s own life or the lives of others with a weapon is guaranteed under legal circumstances.”

Member Post

 

Yes, our Secretary of State flew into Europe and addressed the Czech Senate. No, it was not COVID-19 theater, such as Mitch McConnell and Nancy Pelosi lead. Yes, he addressed far more serious issues. Central to the speech was the malign influence of the Chinese Communist Party, whose threats to all of us include the […]

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Czech President Delivers Bold Speech in Support of Israel

 

milos-zeman-praesident-wahl-tschechien-vaclav-klaus-karel-schwarzenbergThe Czech Republic breeds an uncommon moral vision in its politicians. Perhaps being an early victim of Nazi occupation followed by decades of Soviet domination created fertile soil for the likes of Václav Havel and now Miloš Zeman.

President Zeman recently gave a speech celebrating Israel’s Independence Day, a bold move considering the growing antisemitism in modern Europe. Speaking just two days after the jihad-inspired murders at the Brussels Jewish Museum, Zeman clearly identified Israel’s precarious position:

The only holiday of independence which I can never leave out is the celebration of the independence of the Jewish State of Israel.