Gariwo: the gardens of the Righteous

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Exemplary figures reported by Gariwo

  • Bulgaria
  • Blaga Dimitrova prolific Bulgarian writer and dissident against the pro-Moscow Communist regime
  • Radoj Ralin satirical poet and symbol of Bulgaria's Civil Conscience
  • Zelu Zelev anti-marxist philosopher who led Bulgaria in the fight against Soviet totalitarianism
  • Czechoslovakia
  • Vaclav Benda one of the most active members of the Charter '77
  • Jan Carnogursky intellectual who challenged Czechoslovakian totalitarianism and fought for civil liberty
  • Miklos Duray Slovakian dissenter dedicated to reform and recognizing all ethnic minorities
  • Vaclav Havel leader of the "Velvet Revolution"
  • Jan Chryzostom Korec underground priest in Czechoslovakia, targeted for his faith
  • Dana Nemcova educator and anti-totalitarian dissenter in Czechoslovakia
  • Jan Palach hope in the skies of Prague
  • Jan Patocka historian and fundamental dissenter in the Czechoslovakian opposition forces
  • Anna Sabatova champion of human rights and dissenter against the Czechoslovakian communist regime
  • Josef Zverina Moravian survivor of Totalitarianism who became one of the most significant theologians of the 20th century
  • East Germany
  • Wolf Biermann musician and poet who criticized East Germany for militarism and totalitarianism
  • Barbel Bohley pacifist and important member of the Anti DDR forces in East Germany
  • Robert Havemann German scientist who worked tirelessly against the Nazi Regime and later Soviet totalitarianism
  • Reiner Kunze fearless critic of the Soviet regime in East Germany
  • Walter Schilling passionate pastor who preached for acceptance in repressive East Germany
  • Hungary
  • Istvan Bibo he helped Jews with false documents and he wrote political analyses in which he opposed the Communist party's dictatorial tendencies
  • Ferenc Donath liberal lawyer and dissident in Hungary and key actor during the Hungarian revolution
  • Janos Kenedi Hungarian dissident who championed the freedom of press in Hungary
  • Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty primate of Hungary and leading instigator of the revolution
  • Ottilia Solt educator and underground journalist who fought for the rights of the poor in Hungary
  • Miklos Szabo strove to unite opposition forces against Hungarian totalitarianism
  • North Korea
  • Kang Chol-hawan a Korean journalist who escaped from a North Korean gulag
  • Poland
  • Wladyslaw Bartoszewski anti-nazi journalist committed to aiding the Jews and fostering post-war reconcilation
  • Bogdan Borusewicz he promoted numerous forms of solidarity and material support for the students and workers arrested for political reasons and he joined the Workers’ Defence Committee (KOR)
  • Marek Edelman vice commander of the Warsaw insurrection
  • Bronislaw Geremek he was a Polish social historian and politician and he always had an exclusive interest for the poorest social classes
  • Ryszard Kaczorowski he served as the last President of Poland in exile
  • Lech Kaczynski Polish lawyer who aided Lech Walesa in resisting the Communist Regime
  • Janusz Krupski underground journalist and dissident against Polish totalitarianism
  • Zofia Kuratowska the doctor of Solidarity movement
  • Jacek Kuron one of the leaders of Poland's civil opposition to the Communist regime
  • Tadeusz Masowiecki Solidarnosc member
  • Adam Michnik historian and writer who resisted censorship and soviet repression in Poland
  • Halina Mikołajska Polish dissident actress
  • Alina Pienkowska the legend of Solidarnosc
  • Maciej Plazynski he was a Polish liberal-conservative politician
  • Father Jerzy Popieluszko Polish priest, martyred in his fight to protect freedom of expression.
  • Irena Zofia Romaszewska and "Radio Solidarnosc"
  • Arkadiusz Rybicki striker turned member of parliament, always fighting for worker's rights
  • Anna Walentynowicz the "Mother Courage" of the Danzig shipyards
  • Lech Walesa Polish trade unionist who spearheaded the Opposition forces against the communist regime
  • Rumania
  • Gabriel Andreescu bravely fought against human rights abuses in Eastern Europe
  • Doina Cornea an active voice against totalitarianism in Romania
  • Mircea Dinescu Romanian dissenter who used satire to criticize the political world
  • Vasile Paraschiv Romanian trade unionist who rejected unjust behavior in the Romanian Communist Party
  • Laszlo Tokes he is the honorary chairman of the Democratic Rumanian-Hungarian Association
  • Ion Vianu Romanian psychiatrist who stood against the use of psychiatry as a political weapon

Dissidents of totalitarianism

in Central Europe's communist regimes

The so called "dissent" in the communist regimes of Eastern Europe cannot be just reduced to the simple notion of an "opposition" as its definition would suggest, but it should be above all considered as an attempt to build a "parallel polis" based on the responsibility of every citizen and aimed at occupying the spaces where cultural, social and human freedom are allowed, as wrenched from the totalitarian rule over the social fabric. Members of Charter 77 and Solidarnosc, such as Vaclav Havel, Radim Palous, Jacek Kuron and Adam Michnik, have always underlined that “the power of the powerless” consists in winning over fear through the empowerment made possible through a collective assumption of responsibility, witnessed by the exhortation to "live the truth" within a society based on lie. Ver often their "dissent" consisted in a way to claim the enforcement of laws, such as the ones about freedom of conscience, or the international agreements subscribed by their countries, such as the Helsinki Accords. This was the origin of a broad movement that was able to condition the behaviour and mentality of the public opinion, up to the point in which, letting aside Romania, the totalitarian rule was overthrown in a peaceful way, without shedding blood, with the rise of a new leading class recognized by the majority of the population and ready to take on government responsibilities.