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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Soviet Nuclear Depot In Czech Republic To Open As Museum

Published 22 May 2013

A bunker in the western Czech Republic built in the 1960s to house Soviet nuclear warheads is being turned into a museum where visitors can take a close look at the arms race of the Cold War era. The bunker, one of three such depots in the former Czechoslovakia, was kept secret during the communist era. (10 PHOTOS)


The entrance to the secret bunker, hidden in the forest near the town of Misov, southwest of Prague


Curator Milan Skocovsky checks part of the exhibition, which is entirely housed in the former Soviet Army nuclear weapons depot.


A picture of Josef Stalin hangs next to a security door. The museum, created by the Iron Curtain Foundation, a Czech organization, is set to open to the public in August.


The weapons depot was run by the Soviet Army, and no Czechs had access to it. The site was capable of housing up to 80 nuclear warheads, but it is not known whether warheads were actually ever stored there.


A telephone switchboard inside the weapons depot


Milan Skocovsky opens a 6.5-ton door to the bunker.


Inside the control room


A sign banning open fires and smoking


The Soviet forces that operated the site pulled out of the newly independent Czechoslovakia in 1990-91. The Misov bunker was later used for storing tons of Czechoslovak banknotes after the country's 1993 break-up, and as a storage place for the remains of 4,000 World War II German soldiers.


The Soviet star and two doves painted on the bunker's floor