Panel Discussion Dealing with the Past

Political, Goethe Institute Prag and Office of the Government of the Czech Republic organized public discussion in the framework of the 17th Forum 2000 Conference. The title of the moderated panel debate was "Dealing with the Past". The event was held on September 16, 2013 in the Goethe-Institute Prague. See the whole discussion on VIDEO

The four guest speakers were invited to share their opinions on the following issues:

  • What solutions do we have for accessing sensitive information of national interest produced by totalitarian or autocratic regimes in recent past?
  • What lessons can we learn from the experience of former East Germany, Poland, Slovakia and Romania?
  • What are the options for coping with political pressures and institution´s instability in times of dealing with historical taboos and national traumas?

Opening Remarks:

  • Heinrich Blömeke, Director, Goethe Institute Prague, Germany/Czech Republic (conf.)
  • Tomáš Bouška, Co-Founder and Chair, Political, Czech Republic (conf.)
  • Pavel Tychtl, European Commission, DG COMM – Active European Remembrance, Czech Republic (conf.)


  • Sean Cleary, Founder and Executive Vice-Chair, Future World Foundation, South Africa (conf.)

Panel Discussion:

  • Matej Medvedský, Researcher, Nation's Memory Institute, Slovakia (conf.)
  • Krzysztof Persak, Director, Office of the President, Institute of National Remembrance, Poland (conf.)
  • Lutz Rathenow, Commissioner for the Records of the State Security Service of the Former GDR, Federal State of Saxony, Germany (conf.)
  • Mária Schmidt, Director, House of Terror, Hungary (conf.)