Legislators entering a hall in Czechoslovakia, in 1948. Inside,an image of the Small Coat of Arms of the Republic of Czechoslovakia (1920) dominates the scene. New scene shows Gustav Husak, acting Prime Minister, delivering an address urging support for the Communist Party. The next sequence shows violent Communist-led demonstrations, as armed trade unionists riot in the Prague streets, attacking the offices of the political opposition. Police attempt to restore order. On February 25, 1948, the communists achieve a Czechoslovak coup d'état. On February 27th, Czech President, Edvard Benes, receives a delegation including communist Premier Klement Gottwald and the 12 new members of the cabinet, at the Presidential Palace. He is seen signing documents accepting the communist cabinet. Change of scene shows Czech Foreign Minister, Jan Masaryk, giving a speech rejecting the change. (He remained in office, but died under suspicious circumstances on On March 10, 1948.) View of Masaryk in his casket. Mourners at his funeral.The Czech Parliament Building with flag at half staff. President Benes seen strolling, using a cane, accompanied by his wife, Hana Benes, in the garden of their summer home, Benesova vila, in Sezimovo Usti. Narrator notes that he refused to sign a new constitution drawn up by the communists. He died of natural causes at his villa on September 3, 1948. Scenes of his funeral and of him in his casket. Views of Benes' state funeral, with mourners lining the streets. View of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. Narrator describes circumstances using Churchill's term "Iron Curtain." A communist parade in an Eastern European city. A person who was roughed up on the street. View of East German uprising in 1953, being suppressed with Soviet tanks. Uprising in Poland in 1955 being put down by local police and Russian soldiers. Polish musicians playing and examples of Polish political cartoons permitted under relaxed communist rule.
U.S. propaganda piece about threats by communists against various European countries. The Czechoslovak coup and demonstrations. Czech citizens moving on a street in Czechoslovakia during a strike forcing conservative elements to resign from the cabinet. Scenes of police brutality and beatings against strikers. Communists take over the police. Czech President Edvard Benes with conservative politicians in a government building. Huge crowd on a street. Police clashing with crowd. Czech Prime Minister Klement Gottwald with officials. President Edvard Benes, facing possible civil war or invasion by the Soviet Union, accepts a Communist cabinet. He is seen signing documents to that effect on February 25, 1948. Other officials beside President Benes during the signing. View of the first President of Czechoslovakia Tomas Masaryk's son, Jan Masaryk, who remained the Foreign Minister, and did not agree to the new government. Two days later Jan Masaryk is discovered dead. The body of Jan Masaryk in a coffin. Edvard Benes, who resigned in June 1948 after refusing to sign the communist constitution, is seen walking slowly outside the Parliament using a cane. A guard saluting Benes. View of the body of Edvard Benes, who died in September 1948, laying in a coffin. Mourning citizens offering flowers and cry. Officials bearing the coffin. Shift several years later to street strikes in East Germany in 1953. People during a strike and riot in Poland in 1956. Russian tanks moving on a street and Soviet soldiers are seen. Elevated view of panic and Polish citizens fleeing soldiers. October 1956: Student demonstrators on street in Budapest Hungary during the Hungarian Uprising of 1956. Soviet Russian red star is toppled by crowds from a building roof in a sign of defiance. Russian troops respond with tanks on the streets in Hungary. Crowd fights back. Russians retreat. Crowd overwhelms local police. Imre Nagy, Prime Minister of Hungary, ascends steps. Hungarian crowd on streets burn communist books and papers. Russian tanks invade Hungary to crush revolt. Tanks fire guns on Hungarian street. Imre Nagy's execution announced June 17, 1958.
'Get your new ration books and identity cards here' written on a sign. British civilians line up to obtain new post-war ration books. Women shopping for rationed food. British ships idle in ports as exports wane. View of New York harbor with tugs and barges and Manhattan skyline and skyscrapers in background. Woman holding poster advertising First International Auto Show including European cars to be shown in New York City. British cars in their first car show. One of the cars shown is the 1948 Ghost Minx with two women seated inside it. A 1948 Jaguar convertible is also shown. Communist parades in Europe and Asia. Start of Marshall Plan to help Europe rebuild after the war. Newspaper shows President Truman signing Foreign Aid Bill.
A car arrives at the White House in Washington DC. President Harry S. Truman is presented a Jewish Torah by Dr. Chaim Weizmann, first President of the newly declared State of Israel. Exterior view of White House. Truman with Secretary of State, George Marshall, by the fireplace inside the White House. They discuss world affairs looking at a globe. An animated map shows the increasing Soviet Communist influence in Europe. April 3, 1948, President Truman signs the Economic Assistance Act, know as the Marshall Plan, as members of Congressional leadership look on. Sacks of grain being off loaded at a dock in Italy, as part of Marshall Plan aid. Scene shifts to October 6, 1948 with crowd gathered outside the Democratic Convention at Convention Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Convention delegates applaud during President Truman's address. Officials on stage. Truman talks about his sincere desire to promote peace throughout the world. Pictures of Franklin Roosevelt and Alben Barkley on stage. The White House. Truman seated at a table.
Speaking before United Nations Atomic Energy Commission (UNAEC) in its first meeting in June 1946, Bernard Baruch proposes international control of all atomic energy -- the so-called Baruch Plan. Low level aerial view of ruined post World War 2 European city. Goods including heavy equipment, locomotives, being loaded aboard ships to aid in the postwar recovery of Europe (The Marshall Plan). Workers in Western Europe making use of Marshall Plan materials to rebuild their national infrastructures. West European farmers restoring agriculture. View from overflying light airplane of parts of postwar Berlin in 1948. Blocked roads and empty railroad tracks leading from East Germany to West Germany, blocked by the Soviet Union. Barge traffic at standstill due to Soviet actions. U.S. C-54 transport aircraft flying supplies into West Berlin (The Berlin Airlift) during the Soviet blockade of that city. West Berliners watching U.S. transport aircraft bringing fuel, food and other essentials into the isolated city. A C-54 flying low over empty railroad lines, as it prepares to land in West Berlin. Supplies offloaded from a DC-3 ( AKA C-47 or British Dakota) equipped with unusual set of rear cargo doors. Supplies being moved on Tegel Airport with many C-54 aircraft in the background. Numerous C-47 aircraft operating at Tempelhof airdrome. An East German official opening a barricade as Soviet blockade of West Berlin ends on May 12, 1949, and supply trucks begin to move over roads again. Flags of Western nations flying on high flagpoles. Glimpse of Allied warships underway during World War 2. Formation of P-38 Lightning aircraft in flight overhead. NATO troops marching and NATO armor on parade. Flashes of heavy artillery firing at night. Korean refugees moving South in 1950 with the outbreak of the Korean War. View of UN Security Council meeting in the absence of Soviet representative. U.S. tanks firing guns and American infantrymen in conflict with North Korea in Korean War. American wounded on stretchers.
Soviet Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Andrey Vyshinsky (aka Andrei Vishinsky), making an impassioned speech, in 1948. Adolf Hitler making one of his bombastic speeches, during World War II. Animated map of Europe, showing countries becoming puppet states under post-World War 2 expansionism by the Soviet Union. It also highlights unrelenting Soviet hold over postwar zones of occupation in Austria and East Germany. The map goes on to illustrate expanding communist reflected in politics of Italy, France, Greece, and Finland.