Final Word from Friday, May 28, 2004

Every Czech of a certain age knows the story of Pavlík Morozov. He was a Young Pioneer leader in Soviet Russia who was a fanatical supporter of farm collectivization. In 1930, at age 12, he turned his own father in for collaborating with the kulaks, rich peasants who opposed collectivization. The kulaks - terrorists in today's terminology - murdered him, and Pavlík became a martyr. Statues were erected, and his story was taught to generations of schoolchildren. The Czech and other governments, with their new laws which encourage people to inform on their neighbors, clients and family, and which violate fundamental freedoms, are creating conditions for the rise of modern-day Pavlík Morozovs, fanatics who can't tell wrong from right. Even the Soviets, though, eventually recognized the tragedy of Pavlík Morozov's tale and dropped his name from the textbooks. terrorism fight anti-terrorism


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