How honored I am to know him. This is a totally admirable man. He is a great writer of poems, essays and, of course, plays. A brave man. A man who would and did go to prison for principle.
He turned his pen to politics after the Soviets crushed Czechoslovakia's Prague Spring in 1968, and then, when members of the underground band Plastic People of the Universe were arrested, Václav Havel helped form Charter 77, a protest movement that led to 1989's velvet revolution and, which, eventually, saw him installed as President. I asked him why, when he was told to leave his country, he chose to stay and face certain punishment, not once but twice.
He told me, "Because I live here." He is a man you like on sight. When he was invited by President Clinton to the White House, we came and played along with Milan Hlavsa, bassist from the Plastic People. A lover of music of all types, a true democrat in all ways, Havel is a man who has dedicated his life to the betterment of others. He is a great playwright who spent many years writing only speeches instead, in order to make all of our dreams more attainable.