The rise and fall of communism is being marked in Prague with an open air exhibition celebrating the 20th anniversary of the “Velvet Revolution.”
The show, titled “we didn’t give it up” recalls Czechoslovakian history through the second World War to the fall of the Iron Curtain. But Czechs are divided as to whether life has improved since 1989. “Everything’s fine now, but people steal a lot. Everything else is fine,” said one man referring to recent financial and corruption scandals. “Many things haven’t changed, especially for ordinary people,” said one elderly woman. The exhibition route ends symbolically at the site of the main 1989 demonstrations in Venceslas square. On this day 20 years ago, riot police suppressed a peaceful student protest – an event that sparked a series of popular rallies. As the weeks went by, more and more people joined the protests. The Velvet Revolution is widely seen as one of the most important demonstrations that took place in the eastern bloc. Vaclav Havel, who went on to become the country’s president, was at the forefront as a dissident leader.