The Prague Uprising, which took place during the last days of the Second World War, was arguably the largest Czech combat outing on the territory of their state in the twentieth century. The specific impact of the various forces which took part in it remains a subject of heated discussion until this day. Whatever their role, some historians believe that, had the Czechs not risen up, the war in Europe would have continued for 11 more days.
Dr. David Gilbreath Barton, an award-winning American journalist and psychotherapist, first visited Czechoslovakia in the mid-1980s, “fell in love with the country”, and moved to Prague in the heady early days of Václav Havel’s presidency, less than a year after the Velvet Revolution. His new biography of Czechoslovakia’s last president, Havel: Unfinished Revolution, is an intimate, sweeping portrayal especially of the dissident playwright’s underground years and inward journey.
Though little known outside the Czech Republic, the 15th century King of Bohemia George of Poděbrady (Jiří z Poděbrad) is seen by many today as an accomplished administrator and one of the first political figures to propose the idea of European unity. On the occasion of the 600th anniversary of his birth, we will look closer at the life and legacy of the only Hussite king to ever rule the Czech lands.
Thirty years ago this month, Czechoslovakia saw its first ever papal visit. Not only was this seen as a symbolic step in the newly post-communist country, Pope John Paul II also gave acknowledgment to one of the key figures in Czech history, Jan Hus, and warned of nationalism in a state that would soon break apart.
One hundred years ago this February, the fledgling state of Czechoslovakia adopted a constitution guaranteeing equal rights for men and women, including the right to vote. A few years ahead of that watershed anniversary, Jana Renner began compiling the stories of remarkable Czech women from all walks of life with one thing in common: the courage to be the first in their chosen fields.
Exactly 70 years ago the Communist regime launched its nation-wide crackdown operation on Czechoslovakia’s monasteries. Known as Akce K (Operation K), it saw the mass incarceration of more than 2,300 monks and was part of a wide reaching mission to curb the power of the Church in the country. Many of the victims would end up serving long sentences, or used as forced labour.
In one of Hollywood’s most acclaimed films, Casablanca, Humphrey Bogart finds himself torn between choosing to be with the woman he loves, or helping her escape with her Czech husband Victor Laszlo. The latter’s story may have been inspired by a real man - Czechoslovak resistance fighter Jan Smudek, whose story is no less adventurous than in the famous picture.
In early March 1943, the first action of the Czechoslovak foreign contingent on the Eastern Front during the Second World War took place around the Ukrainian village of Sokolovo. Still today, one can see depictions of the action in memorials and names, such as in the West Bohemian town of Sokolov, Prague’s Sokolovská street or in the mosaics in Florenc metro station. Most of these memorials are the result of Communist propaganda after the war. However, this does not take away from the courage of the men and women who fought in the battle. Many of
Czechoslovakia had arguably the best national ice hockey team in the world for years after the Second World War – despite the Communists side-lining a slew of “politically unreliable” star players on the road to building socialism. We look back at the roots of a historic pub brawl and police raid 70 years ago, after frustrated hockey players blew the whistle on official lies.
First ever Indo-European settlement discovered on Czech Territory
How can foreigners travel to Czech Republic at present – and what may future hold?
Czech women might finally be allowed to drop the suffix -ová
Czech government reopens borders sooner than planned, special regime with Slovakia
Prague City Tourism shifts the focus to domestic tourists