Jana Wendt said Aung San Suu Kyi was her role model. She had made the comment, "People almost literally have 10-year plans now (in 2010). That was the furthest thing from my mind (back in 1978)...I just lived in hope that after I did a degree something might happen." Comedian John Clarke mentioned in 2012, "Jana was a serious host. ('A Current Affair') got a bit silly later but Jana, as you know, is very intelligent and goes way beyond being a host. She's multi-lingual and so forth." 

Jana had been known "for asking pesky questions and getting the answers she wants." Barbara Walters reminded, "When I interview, I know what I want to ask, but I also know what I want the subject to answer. I don't put words in their mouth, but there are certain nuggets of information and insight that I've determined are critical to the story I'm telling and I frame my questions in such a way as to yield those...An interview isn't a friendly chat, it's a 'spelunking expedition' and you better come equipped with your GPS." 

In April 1991, Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke honored Alexander Dubcek with the Human Rights Award. In his speech, the PM pointed out, "Democracy has not spread fully throughout the nations of Eastern Europe; economic reform and development remains a huge challenge throughout the region, and we must all understand that this will inevitably bring dislocation, disruption and pain before prosperity...In 1968 Alexander Dubcek, responding to the demands of his people, set about building a society based on the principles of democracy and social justice. His commitment to 'socialism with a human face' made him the driving force of the reforms which led to the 'Prague Spring'. 

"In the optimistic days of the 'Prague Spring', Alexander Dubcek's leadership was crucial. Now over 2 decades later (1968-91) his leadership is again an inspiration to his people. It is a fitting tribute to his support throughout Czechoslovak society that he was, once again, to stand with them throughout their 'Velvet Revolution' of 1989. The people of Czechoslovakia (comprised the Czech and Slovak people) are now embarking on a period of constitutional and economic reform as they make the important transition towards a market system based on the fundamental tenets of democratic pluralism. That will not be a painless process.

"Friends, now is the time for us to rebuild bridges between East and West and in doing so to rediscover links which for too long have been broken…Friends, the shape of the emerging international (world) order depends on replacing the confrontation of the post-war era with a spirit of cooperation and reconciliation...The world recently faced a similar challenge in the Gulf (Operation Desert Storm August 1990-February 1991), and to its great and enduring credit, showed that it had learned the lesson of Czechoslovakia; that freedom must be defended everywhere, and aggression must be everywhere opposed."

In January 2001, Jana spoke to Richard Holbrooke on the Australian 'Dateline' program.

Jana: In the case of Bosnia and Kosovo, the U.S. went in there for the sake of certain principles. Do you think, in the case of Bosnia firstly, which was effectively partitioned, that those principles won out in the end?

Richard Holbrooke: When was it partitioned?

Jana: Well, it's a de facto partition, isn't it?

Richard Holbrooke: You can get in a car in Zagreb today (in 2001), drive through the Serb part of Bosnia, drive to Sarajevo, keep going and drive all the way to Kosovo, and keep going and drive all the way to Greece, and no-one will ever stop you. Do you call that partition?

Jana: But the continuing enmity between those ethnic groups is as good as an unofficial partition, isn't it?

Richard Holbrooke: No. I think you have enmity among ethnic groups, which is a code word for racial groups, in many countries - including, regrettably, ours and perhaps there's some racial problems that still exist in Australia. The issues in Bosnia are real, but let's not confuse racial tension, which is one of the underlying facts of the world today, and one of the most pernicious - let's not confuse that with a war based on false ethnic divisions. I stress 'false', because there never really was any significant difference between Croats, Muslims and Serbs. You can't tell the difference between them when you walk down the street. They spoke the same language - still do. They intermarried in large numbers; it was a secular society; it was exploited by demagogues.

Jana: When you deliver an ultimatum to a man like (Slobodan) Milosevic how do you…

Richard Holbrooke: (Laughs) I don't know anyone else like Milosevic. There's no-one else like him.

Jana: Let me take you back to that point again - this enormous power that was vested in you as an individual to negotiate with this man, Milosevic. How do you gauge how to play that power that you have?

Richard Holbrooke: I didn't think of it as power - I thought of it as a responsibility. It's kind of scary to go in there and you're talking to a genuinely bad man who started 4 wars, lost them all, who has wrecked south central Europe, who seems to have no conscience at all, and it's not a lot of fun. It's like mountain-climbing without a rope, without anyone belaying you. If you fall, you're going to go all the way down.

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