Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

NEWS SHORTS

Slovakia to remember the invasion of Warsaw Pact troops

AUGUST 21 is the day when the two countries of the former Czechoslovakia remember the invasion of the Warsaw Pact troops into the country in 1968 in an attempt to give a halt to the reformist movement which later became known as the Prague Spring.

AUGUST 21 is the day when the two countries of the former Czechoslovakia remember the invasion of the Warsaw Pact troops into the country in 1968 in an attempt to give a halt to the reformist movement which later became known as the Prague Spring.

The invasion has put an end to all the hopes the people in Czechoslovakia had in the democratisation process led by the then-Communist Party chairman Alexander Dubček, who wanted to create a regime that became known as ‘socialism with human face’.

On the night between August 20 and 21 the troops of five Warsaw Pact allies – Bulgaria, Hungary, GDR, Poland and USSR – invaded their allied country Czechoslovakia in what they called ‘the act of international solidarity’. Romania did not take part in the invasion.

Dubček’s allies in the leadership of the Communist Party protested against the invasion which they regarded as a violation of the basic rules in the relations between socialist countries and the norms of the international law. In reaction, the USSR arrested Dubček and his collaborators, transported them to Russia and let them free only after signing the ‘Moscow Protocol’, which basically meant a capitulation of Czechoslovakia and a start of the period of ‘normalisation’, which meant mainly political prosecution of those who took any active part in the Prague Spring movement, resembling the political processes in 1950s. Many of them lost their jobs, some ended up in prisons.

A massive wave of emigration of Slovaks and Czechs to the western countries followed the invasion.

It took another 20 years for the regime to fall and for the democratisation process to be restarted.

Top stories

Messerschmidt created most of his character heads in Pressburg

Bratislava will name a square after the prominent artist

A replica of one head from the series Character Heads by F. X. Messerschmidt; ownership of the Slovak National Gallery

Christmas Bazaar returns to the Old Market hall

One of the events which presents diplomatic communities residing in Slovakia to the wider public is the already traditional Christmas Bazaar, which focuses on gastronomy and charity.

Christmas Bazaar 2016

Blog: The wanderer returns home

The places you visit, people you befriend, experiences that leave their mark, they all become a part of you.

Go east for real morality, Jean-Marc Barr says Photo

The French American actor/director, who plays in a Slovak co-production film, said during a recent visit to Bratislava that eastern Europe, and other eastern countries still have what America has already and what…

Jean-Marc Barr during IFF Bratislava 2017