Czech President Quotes

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The truth is not simply what you think it is; it is also the circumstances in which it is said, and to whom, why, and how it is said.
Václav Havel
Czech: Řekni mi, co čteš, a já ti řeknu, kdo jsi. English: Tell me what you read, and I'll tell you who you are. First president of Czechoslovakia.
Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk
Barrett opened the door and stepped into the large, spacious corner office of Cordell Hull, the U.S. secretary of state. “What’s the matter, Bill?” Hull asked, looking up from the stack of papers on his large oak desk. “Looks like you’ve seen a ghost.” “It’s the Czechs, sir,” Barrett said. “What about them?” “Hitler’s forces just crossed their border.” Hull was aghast. “Germany has invaded Czechoslovakia?” “I’m afraid so, sir.” “This is confirmed?” Barrett nodded. “Very well,” Hull said. “Get the White House on the line. I need to see the president.
Joel C. Rosenberg (The Auschwitz Escape)
I realize with fright that my impatience for the re-establishment of democracy had something almost communist in it; or, more generally, something rationalist. I had wanted to make history move ahead in the same way that a child pulls on a plant to make it grow more quickly. I believe we must learn to wait as we learn to create. We have to patiently sow the seeds, assiduously water the earth where they are sown and give the plants the time that is their own. One cannot fool a plant any more than one can fool history. —Václav Havel,7 playwright, last President of Czechoslovakia and first president of the Czech Republic
Donella H. Meadows (Thinking in Systems: A Primer)
In the train, I read a special issue of Der Spiegel, about the Germans who had been driven out in ethnic cleansing campaigns at the end of World War One. Almost three million from Sudetenland. The Czechs, who offered hardly any resistance to the Germans, celebrated the victory given them by Russians in such a manner. Poland, Yugoslavia, Germans were driven out of these countries, mass executed. The story is not given much attention because people are put in the mass category—Germans, the perpetrators, not the victims. Well, are they all the same? Did they all vote the same way? Those in other countries didn’t vote at all, and their sympathies may have been largely with the invading armies, but it is not these Germans who decided anything or started anything. If the US were suddenly to lose a war that Bush initiates, should all the Americans be driven out from everywhere, be mass executed, all on account of being Americans, even if Bush didn’t win the presidency with a majority vote? Hitler, likewise, never got the majority, but worked with coalitions. If one is not to romanticize, and permanently divide nations into the good ones and the bad ones, and thus perpetrate chauvinism, all these stories have to be told.
Josip Novakovich (Shopping for a Better Country)
On September 17, 2009 President Obama announced that he was reversing previous U. S. plans to place American missiles in Poland and the Czech Republic. The American missile shield was designed to defend Israel and other nations against Iranian missiles. The cancellation disappointed America’s allies, worried about the re-emerging Russian Bear. It also emboldened Russian leaders and worried Israel.
John Price (The End of America: The Role of Islam in the End Times and Biblical Warnings to Flee America)
The largest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity,' warns Czech president Vaclav Klaus, 'is no longer socialism. It is, instead, the ambitious, arrogant, unscrupulous ideology of environmentalism.' If you doubt the arrogance, you haven't seen that Newsweek cover story that declared the global warming debate over. Consider: If Newton's laws of motion could, after 200 years of unfailing experimental and experiential confirmation, be overthrown, it requires religious fervor to believe that global warming--infinitely more untested, complex and speculative--is a closed issue.
Charles Krauthammer (Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes and Politics)
Milos Zeman is the President of the Czech Republic. He is pro-Russian, is friends with Marine Le Pen and Nigel Farage, endorsed Donald Trump for President, and has ties to Hungary’s Jobbik movement. Zeman has justified the civil war in Ukraine and has denied that Russia has a military presence there. He stated, “I take seriously the statement of foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, that there are no Russian troops [in Ukraine].” Zeman had been consistently verbal in his support for the lifting of Western sanctions on Russia and was against EU sanctions on Russia. He was re-elected President in January 2018 with 51.4% of the vote. He won the majority of the rural vote by exhorting a populist anti-immigrant slogan: “Stop Migrants and [opponent] Drahos. This is our land! Vote Zeman!” Zeman’s chief economic advisor is Martin Nejedlÿ, a former executive of the Russian oil company, Lukoil Aviation Czech. Lukoil was once the second largest oil company in Russia following Gazprom. Martin Nejedlÿ of Prague was also owner of Fincentrum, a financial advisory firm with “more than 2,500 financial advisors” on its website with offices in Prague and Bratislava. The firm has a history of alliances with the Kremlin. The Prime Minister of the Republic’s coalition government is 63-year-old Andrej Babiš. He is a media and agribusiness mogul and the second-richest man in the Czech Republic. ANO is the Action of Dissatisfied Citizens Party that was founded by Babiš that holds a center-right populist platform like many European and American conservative right-
Malcolm W. Nance (The Plot to Destroy Democracy: How Putin and His Spies Are Undermining America and Dismantling the West)
When Karel Gott, the Czech pop singer, went abroad in 1972, Husak got scared. He sat right down and wrote him a personal letter (it was August 1972 and Gott was in Frankfurt). The following is a verbatim quote from it. I have invented nothing. Dear Karel, We are not angry with you. Please come back. We will do everything you ask. We will help you if you help us … Think it over. Without batting an eyelid Husak let doctors, scholars, astronomers, athletes, directors, cameramen, workers, engineers, architects, historians, journalists, writers, and painters go into emigration, but he could not stand the thought of Karel Gott leaving the country. Because Karel Gott represents music minus memory, the music in which the bones of Beethoven and Ellington, the dust of Palestrina and Schonberg, lie buried. The president of forgetting and the idiot of music deserve one another. They are working for the same cause. “We will help you if you help us.” You can’t have one without the other.
Milan Kundera
Faced with the Führer, Hácha caved in. He declared that the situation was very clear and that all resistance was madness. But it’s already two a.m., and he has only four hours to prevent the Czech people from defending themselves. According to Hitler, the German military machine is already on the march (true) and nothing can stop it (at least, no one seems very keen to try). Hácha must sign the surrender immediately and inform Prague. The choice Hitler is offering could not be simpler: either peace now, followed by a long collaboration between the two nations, or the total annihilation of Czechoslovakia. President Hácha, terrified, is left in a room with Göring and Ribbentrop. He sits at a table, the document before him. All he has to do now is sign it. The pen is in his hand, but his hand is trembling. The pen keeps stopping before it can touch the paper. In the absence of the Führer, who rarely stays to oversee such formalities, Hácha gets jumpy. “I can’t sign this,” he says. “If I sign the surrender, my people will curse me forever.” This is perfectly true. So Göring and Ribbentrop have to convince Hácha that it’s too late to turn back. This leads to a farcical scene where, according to witnesses, the two Nazi ministers literally chase Hácha around the table, repeatedly putting the pen back in his hand and ordering him to sign the bloody thing. At the same time, Göring yells continuously: if Hácha continues to refuse, half of Prague will be destroyed within two hours by the German air force … and that’s just for starters! Hundreds of bombers are waiting for the order to take off, and they will receive that order at 6:00 a.m. if the surrender is not signed. At this crucial moment, Hácha goes dizzy and faints. Now it’s the two Nazis who are terrified, standing there over his inert body. He absolutely must be revived: if he dies, Hitler will be accused of murdering him in his own office. Thankfully, there is an expert injecter in the house: Dr. Morell, who will later inject Hitler with amphetamines several times a day until his death—a medical regime that probably had some link with the Führer’s growing dementia. So Morell suddenly appears and sticks a syringe into Hácha, who wakes up. A telephone is shoved into his hand. Given the urgency of the situation, the paperwork can wait. Ribbentrop has taken care to install a special direct line to Prague. Gathering what is left of his strength, Hácha informs the Czech cabinet in Prague of what is happening in Berlin, and advises them to surrender. He is given another injection and taken back to see the Führer, who presents him once again with that wretched document. It is nearly four a.m. Hácha signs. “I have sacrificed the state in order to save the nation,” he believes. The imbecile. It’s as if Chamberlain’s stupidity was contagious …
Laurent Binet (HHhH)
In a typically vicious remark, Miloš Zeman, the Czech president, warned that the influx of refugees would deprive Europeans ‘of women’s beauty since they will be shrouded in burkas from head to toe, including the face’.
Patrick Kingsley (The New Odyssey: The Story of the Twenty-First Century Refugee Crisis)
On July 1, President Calvin Coolidge signed the measure into law. With the act’s ratification, the country was set on a course to, by its own definition, “maintain the racial preponderance of the basic strain [of] our people” and “stabilize the ethnic composition of the population.” The act proved so restrictive for Asians and eastern Europeans that in 1924 more Italians, Czechs, Yugoslavs, Greeks, Lithuanians, Hungarians, Poles, Portuguese, Romanians, Chinese, and Japanese left the United States than arrived as immigrants
Adrienne Berard (Water Tossing Boulders: How a Family of Chinese Immigrants Led the First Fight to Desegregate Schools in the Jim Crow South)
The magic of America is that we're a free and open society with a mixed population. Part of our security is our freedom.” Quote by Madeleine Albright, Former Secretary of State. Madeleine Albright was born Marie Jana Korbelová on May 15, 1937 in Prague, Czechoslovakia. She was nominated by President Bill Clinton on December 5, 1996 and was confirmed unanimously by the Senate to become the first woman to hold a Cabinet post as Secretary of State. She currently serves as the Chairperson of the Albright Stonebridge Group and is a Professor of International Relations at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service. In May 2012, Secretary Albright was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Aside from English she speaks French, Russian, and Czech; she also understands Polish and Serbo-Croatian.
Hank Bracker
The playbook is well known. As Czech president (and economist) Vaclav Klaus once explained, environmentalism is the successor to failed socialism as justification for all-pervasive rule by a politburo of experts. Only now it acts in the name of not the proletariat but the planet.
Charles Krauthammer (Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes, and Politics)
On 14 March the Czech President, Hacha, was summoned to Berlin. He was kept waiting while Hitler watched a film. At last, in the early hours of the morning, Hacha was marched into the room and told that in a few hours’ time the Wehrmacht was going to invade his country.
Michael Dobbs (Winston's War)
This is summed nicely up by Vaclav Klaus, President of the Czech Republic (and one of the very few leaders of any country to doubt the mainstream view of the science of climate change): “The largest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy, and prosperity at the end of the twentieth and at the beginning of the twenty-first century is no longer socialism. It is, instead, the ambitious, arrogant, unscrupulous ideology of environmentalism.
Andrew E. Dessler (Introduction to Modern Climate Change)
During my stop in Prague, E.U. officials had expressed alarm about the rise of far-right parties across Europe and how the economic crisis was causing an uptick in nationalism, anti-immigrant sentiment, and skepticism about integration. The sitting Czech president, Václav Klaus, to whom I made a short courtesy visit, embodied some of these trends. A vocal “Eurosceptic” who’d been in office since 2003, he was both ardently pro–free market and an admirer of Vladimir Putin’s. And although we tried to keep things light during our conversation, what I knew of his public record—he had supported efforts to censor Czech television, was dismissive of gay and lesbian rights, and was a notorious climate change denier—didn’t leave me particularly hopeful about political trends in central Europe.
Barack Obama (A Promised Land)