Friday, August 22, 2014

Special Report: Crushing Of Prague Spring

Video 40 Years Ago, The Death Of 'Spring'

Viewed from Prague, the images of Russian armor streaming into Georgia carry inevitable echoes. Forty years ago, the world watched as Moscow’s tanks rolled across Czechoslovakia. More


The Spirit Of Dissent, Then And Now

In the following articles, three older generation dissidents reflect on their experiences and what they mean for the struggle for freedom today. Three young-generation dissidents pay homage to the achievements of those who came before them and inspired their struggles for liberty.

Principles Are A Powerful Weapon

First, every mistake by the police -- the heavy-handed use of violence, threats, blackmail, etc. -- must be made public, says former Slovak dissident Miroslav Kusy, citing an essay he wrote called "Advice From a Dissident."

From 1968 To Charter 77 To 1989 And Beyond

I was 25 years old when I made the decision to sign Charter 77, recalls Anna Sabatova. I didn't realize that I was taking part in a historical event. I simply signed, not for the first time, a document calling for the observance of human rights and freedoms.

Spirit Of Freedom And Freedom Of Spirit

In 1989, when freedom finally prevailed in Czechoslovakia, Belarus was just entering on its own long march toward that same goal, writes Pavel Sevyarynets of the Youth Front movement in Belarus. Our 1991, 1996, and 2006 were more similar to Prague in 1968 than to the Prague of 1989.

Russia Waiting For Its Own 'Generation Of Freedom'

Russia today has problems with freedom, democracy, and human rights. And people today also come out onto public squares, protest, and criticize the authorities. But even the most radical Russian oppositionist today can hardly imagine what it meant to be a dissident in the Soviet Union.

Video Their Struggle Is Now Ours

In a bid to show the world not only the military advantages of the communist system, but the humanitarian ones as well, the Soviet state poured enormous resources into education, science, and the arts. But the people could not be made into slaves, writes Aleksandr Gnezdilov, an activist with the youth wing of the Moscow branch of Yabloko.

Our Dreams And Our Neighbors Were Lost

Approval for the Czech invasion inside the Soviet Union was not nearly as unanimous as Soviet mass media made it seem, Russian human rights activist Ludmila Alekseyeva recalls.


Czech PM: Georgian Conflict 'Worse' Than '68

Czech President Vaclav Klaus has stirred debate by discounting comparisons between the conflict in Georgia and the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek disagrees, however, and thinks the events in Georgia are actually worse, in their way.
More Articles


'Forty Years After Prague, It's Georgia's Turn'

Forty years ago, eight Russian human rights activists went to Red Square to protest the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia. The activists were promptly arrested and sentenced. Two of the participants, Pavel Litvinov and Viktor Fainberg, traveled to Prague for the 40th anniversary of the invasion and shared their thoughts.

Freedom Of An Unarmed Man

Uzbek opposition leader Muhammad Solih, who served as a Soviet soldier in Bratislava in 1968, reflects on how his experiences there set him on a lifelong path of nonviolent dissent.


Video Eyewitnesses To Invasion

On the 40th anniversary, two Czechs and two then-Soviet soldiers remember their parts in history.

Video Feature

Return Of An Occupier

A former Belarusian tank commander meets the mayor of the Czech town his squadron once occupied in 1968. Click here


Video A City Looks Back

Prague remembered the 40th anniversary with an exhibition on Wenceslas Square that mixed solemn history with a little bit of fun.

Video Memories

Three people who lived through the invasion recall where they were and what they were doing.

Video Invasion Ramifications

"Our parents knew that that was the end of everything they hoped for."