Vaclav Havel Criticizes Obama for Failing to Meet Dalai Lama

It is interesting that President Obama is open to meeting with authoritarian dictators of terrorist nations, such as Iran, but is reluctant to meet with the peace-loving Dalai Lama.

(p. A12) PRAGUE — It was supposed to be an interview about the revolutions that overturned communism 20 years ago in Europe. But first, Vaclav Havel had a question.

Was it true that President Obama had refused to meet the Dalai Lama in Washington?
Mr. Havel is a fan of the Dalai Lama, who was among the first visitors to Prague’s storied castle after Mr. Havel moved in there as president, the final act in the swift, smooth revolution of 1989. A picture of the Dalai Lama is displayed prominently in Mr. Havel’s current office in central Prague.
Told that Mr. Obama had made clear he would receive the Dalai Lama after his first presidential visit to China in November, Mr. Havel reached out to touch a magnificent glass dish, inscribed with the preamble to the United States Constitution — a gift from Mr. Obama, who visited in April.
“It is only a minor compromise,” Mr. Havel said of the nonreception of the Tibetan leader. “But exactly with these minor compromises start the big and dangerous ones, the real problems.”

For the full story, see:
ALISON SMALE. “Former Czech Leader Assails Moral Compromises.” The New York Times (Thurs., October 15, 2009): A12.
(Note: the online version of the article is dated Oct. 13th, and has the title “Havel, Still a Man of Morals and Mischief.”)
(Note: I have added a missing quotation mark at the end of the quote after the word “problems.”)

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