The Social Democratic Party, the senior partner in the ruling coalition, makes the front pages of all main dailies today. While disagreement within the party over rent and another VAT hike sees Mlada Fronta Dnes lead with a headline reading "Social Democrats in serious crisis," Lidove Noviny and Pravo choose to celebrate the fact that this disagreement will most likely result in the prices of water, sewage collection and tickets to cultural events not being raised.
Since I started working at Radio Prague as a reporter, I have used the phrases "before the fall of communism" and "after the fall of communism" countless times. And I hate them. Each time I say it I feel I shouldn't look back so often, I shouldn't constantly compare things to what they were like before 1989. It's more than fourteen years ago, and I am still using November 1989 as a point of reference.
It's exactly fifteen years since one of the events that accelerated the fall of communism in Czechoslovakia. January 1989 was the 20th anniversary of the death of Jan Palach, the student who had set himself alight on Prague's Wenceslas Square in protest against the Soviet occupation. All through the week starting from the 15th January thousands of people gathered beneath the statue of Saint Wenceslas with flowers, to remember Palach's sacrifice. Their quiet protest was put down by police in riot gear using water cannon, a gross over-reaction that
After the Soviet armed forces liberated most of Czechoslovakia from the Nazis in 1944 and 1945, the Soviet Union started slowly but surely to assert its influence in the country. Post-war Czechoslovakia was still a country with democratic institutions and free elections. The end of democracy was to come in 1948 when the communists took over, but the first signs of what was to come appeared much earlier...
The bad weather makes the front pages, although what's bad for some is not necessarily bad for others. MLADA FRONTA DNES shows a man cross-country skiing along the tram tracks in Prague's Bila Hora district, while LIDOVE NOVINY has a photo of someone snowboarding on Petrin Hill, with a snow-topped Prague Castle behind him.
Fifty-six years after he was found dead in a courtyard beneath his apartment window, police have finally concluded that Czechoslovakia's post-war foreign minister Jan Masaryk was murdered. This will come as no surprise to those who watched the Communist Party take power in 1948, but goes against the official version that Masaryk committed suicide. Rob Cameron reports.
About a month ago, a number of public opinion polls suggested that the Communists enjoyed second place on the popularity ladder in the Czech Republic. When the results of the first poll were released, they were not given much importance but confirmation from a second poll conducted by a different agency, resulted in heated discussion and public debate. The country's politicians, sociologists and independent commentators were asked to analyse the situation, trying to find a logical reason why ever more Czechs would want to support a party that was
This week was marked by two major events in pop-music. On Tuesday a number of the Czech Republic's popular rock bands took part in a concert held in Prague called "S komunisty se nemluvi", or "You Shouldn't Talk to Communists". Precisely fourteen years after the fall of the communist regime in this country, the latest polls suggest an increase in the popularity of the Communist Party, making it now the country's second most popular political party.
Many of the Czech Republic's most popular rock bands took part in a benefit concert held in Prague on Tuesday night called " S komunisty se nemluvi", or "You Shouldn't Talk to Communists". The timing of the concert was significant: it came the day after the anniversary of the start of the Velvet Revolution, and a week after polls suggested a quarter of Czechs now support the Communist Party.
Monday was a holiday here in the Czech Republic, marking the fourteenth anniversary of the Velvet Revolution that put an unexpected end to forty years of Communist rule. Although the country's historians and politicians are still arguing over who should be credited for the Communists' downfall, the major role of the dissident movement has never really been questioned. But in an article for last Saturday's daily Mlada Fronta Dnes, Czech President Vaclav Klaus played down the role of the dissident elite, saying it was ordinary people, leading their