Author Picture

Valdas Anelauskas

Valdas Anelauskas was born into a wealthy landowning family in Lithuania. His father fought in the Lithuanian resistance and spent 10 years -- longer than Soltsenitsyn --- in the Russian Gulag.. As a Lithuanian nationalist, Valdas Anelauskas was involved in the resistance movement for Lithuanian independence almost from birth. He was first arrested by the KGB at the age of 14, and later joined the broader dissident movement for human rights as an independent journalist in the anti-Soviet samizdat. He wrote for Radio Liberty/Radio Free Europe; some of his articles were also used by the London Times, Associated Press and others. In 1988, on the anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, he renounced his Soviet citizenship and was ejected from the Soviet Union soon after. Upon his arrival in the U.S. as a high profile political dissident, Anelauskas initially cooperated with several right wing organizations seeking the collapse of the Soviet Union, among them the notorious Anti-Bolshevik Bloc of Nations, the World Anti-Communist League, and others. He addressed the 17th annual Conservative Political Action Conference as a featured speaker, alongside Newt Gingrich, Jesse Helms, Eliot Abrams, Robert Bork and other leading conservative spokespersons. When he discovered the elitist nature and goals of American conservative organizations, his association with them terminated. Recalling his earlier activities with shame and chagrin, Anelauskas now regards himself as the naive victim of American propaganda, and of officials of its various agencies. and institutions, who sought to achieve, not human rights, but power, by the Soviet demise. As in his days as an anti-Soviet dissident, Valdas Anelauskas remains, to this day, a fearless seeker of truth and a staunch defender of all human rights -- not simply the civil and political rights which he sought for his native Lithuania, but the full gamut of international human rights, including socio-economic and cultural rights as well. He speaks and writes in four languages. He lives in Eugene, Oregon, and travels frequently in Europe.