CZECHOSLOVAKIA: Death of an Optimist

Old Aristide Briand called Eduard Benes the only "permanent Minister" in Europe. Others dubbed him "Europe's smartest little statesman." That was how he looked between the wars. He did not change but the world did, and long before the end came last week, Benes looked anything but permanent, anything but smart.

"A Lofty Ideal." Benes began his first exile in 1915 when he was a wispy little 31-year-old scholar. He wanted for his Czech people "the freedom of conscience and a lofty ideal of justice." That was his line of thought, but his line of action was to work hard...

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