On December 25 prominent Belarusian political scientist Vitali Silitski would be 40 years old. Just year and a half Vitali did not live up to his anniversary. However, his ideas are still living.
That is what Vitali Silitski wished, to continue the life of his work. His “Postponed Freedom” was published as a book post mortem by the Library of Belarusian Collegium. His “The Long Way from Tyranny” is being prepared for publishing; this is the book on which Vitali Silitski had worked until his last days.
His last days before Christmas days very sick Vitali Silitski spent in caring for others: he was one of the “angels” who helped arrested people after the dispersal of post-election demonstration in 2010. He brought parcels, stood long lines in front of detention centers to pass unknown people so needed stuff.
In his unpublished book Vitali wrote:
“Whatever disappointments were brought to Belarusian democratic opposition by electoral campaign, voting, and extinct protests, all those marked, I would say, the revolution of spirit in democratic community, and this way possibly increased the chances that one day the freedom will come to our country” (about the events of 2006)1.
Vitali Silitski himself was not only a revolutionist of spirit, but also a real revolutionist of thought, bringing into political science discourse such concepts as “preventive authoritarianism” and “authoritarian international”, which are one of the best explanations of the situation in Belarus.
The star of Vitali Silitski that lighted on Christmas Day forty years ago will not fade until Vitali lives in our memories, until his ideas inspire for revolution of spirit.
“It is still too far to freedom. But the way is marked”, Vitali Silitski believed2.
Picture from Vitali’s last Birthday, spent with friends. Photo from Vitali Silitski Facebook page.
1Expression “revolution of spirit” was used by Vitali Silitski in his different works.
2Віталь Сіліцкі, Пачатак рэвалюцыі духу, http://arche.bymedia.net/2006-4/silicki406.htm.