IN THE COMMENTS: bagoh20 begins with some decent-enough generic snark:
No matter who the subject, I find it hard to consider "outstanding politician" to be anything but an insult. I'm a bigot about politicians.But it is not right for this occasion. Irene brings the gravitas:
Brazauskas was no ordinary, career politician. He became a politician as a result of extraordinary times. He was a courageous man who inspired the citizens to stand up to an awesome power.
Lithuania was under the Soviet yoke between 1944 and 1991. A documentary, Red Terror on the Amber Coast exposes these times. There now is a museum in the capital, Vilnius, dedicated to preserving the history of the Soviet genocide.
Many members of my family fled Lithuania in June 1944. Those who did not get out were deported to reeducation camps in the Gulag.