Václav Havel, the former dissident playwright who led Czechoslovakia’s 1989 “Velvet Revolution” against communism and then served as his country’s president, died Sunday. He was 75.
Mr. Havel was a playwright by profession and a political activist by avocation. The two activities were complementary, and each served to gain him a leading place among the dissidents of Eastern Europe who helped bring down the communist empire. His words and deeds resonated far beyond the borders of the former Czechoslovakia, and he was widely recognized for his struggles in behalf of democracy and human dignity.