From remarks made in Prague Nov. 17 by Czechoslovakian President Vaclav Havel on the first anniversary of the "Velvet Revolution":

... Today we are standing here somewhat embarrassed. We know very well what we still have to accomplish, and the question springing up to mind is why do we find it so difficult to launch our joint project off the ground. Is it because we underestimated the legacy of the old regime or overestimated our own capacity? Is it because someone is deliberately trying to thwart our joint effort, or are we marring our own endeavor? ...

Whatever the answer or explanation, the fact remains that dissatisfaction, nervousness, insecurity and disillusionment are widespread in our society. This is understandable and to a certain extent might serve a good purpose. For isn't precisely impatience the factor ... inspiring a more radical and more speedy implementation of social changes? Nervousness and impatience do not worry me too much.

What in my view is far worse are the attendant phenomena ever more obvious at every turn: rancor, rivalry, mutual denigration, envy and boundless ambition. It seems to me that these vices infecting our public life are ever more rampant.

Are we really a nation capable of reviving its virtues only once in a 20 years' time? Virtues that only last for a few months? Are we really a nation that only manages to kowtow to the oppressor and when the cup finally overflows in the bravado of boasting speeches and mutual defamation?

I find it hard to believe that this {is} our one and only -- our sole chief historical alternative; I find it hard to believe that the spirit of tolerance and wisdom could not ultimately prevail in Slovak souls and in Czech and Slovak public life.