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.
Marshal Jozef Klemens Pilsudski, Poland's Commander in chief, welcomed in Poland. People gather. Field Marshal walks in followed by field officers. Field decorated with flower and flags. Crowd gathers on a hill and in the field. People walk on a road. Soldiers stand aligned beside the road.
Flashbacks of Nazi activities during World War II presented during Nuremberg Trials. Chief prosecutor from Great Britain, Hartley Shawcross, presents Count No 2, Crimes Against Peace, meaning wars of aggression in violation of international treaties and agreements. Lieutenant Colonel Schumt relates Adolf Hitler's plans to occupy Poland. View of a truck and uniformed Germans marching and agitating in Poland to advocate annexation by Germany (under Albert Forster). On August 23, 1939, Joseph Stalin and Joachim von Ribbentrop sign Russian-German non-aggression pact. Flashback view of convoy of German tanks moving near farm fields toward Poland. View of Pope Pius XII and then Franklin Delano Roosevelt appealling to Germany not to attack Poland or other sovereign nations. Raucous laughter in Reichstag as Hitler addresses German leaders and describes the appeal by Roosevelt. September 1, 1939, scenes of German troops invading Poland as Luftwaffe begins mass bombing raid. Artillery guns fire, troops in jeeps, personnel carriers, and motorcycles stream into Poland. Aerial view of Luftwaffe aircraft in formation approaching Poland and bombing Polish cities. Bombs away view as bombs fall from aircraft to ground and explosions and smoke seen on ground in Poland. City buildings in Poland seen in flames and crumbling to the ground. Line of German Wehrmacht Army forces marching on roadways into invaded territory. German Army seen invading Denmark on April 9, 1940. German sailors aboard fast moving German ship. German army soldiers aiming machine guns. Camera view of German tank as tank gun is lowered directly toward camera. German forces occupy a North Sea dock area of coastal Denmark, German tanks and vehicles drive on streets and sidewalks in Denmark as Danish citizens run and leap out of the way. Danish citizens stand quietly along sides of a road as German Army marches into a city of Denmark.
A Mercedes auto exhibition in Poznan Poland in June 1956 before unrest took hold. Flags of various nations at the show and Mercedes cars on display. A rebellion leader arrives and addresses demonstrators gathered in Poznan to protest the Soviet-led Communist government in Poland. Aerial view of Poznan Poland in 1956. Tanks of Soviet military arrive and are seen among the demonstrators. A court room during trial of the demonstrators' leaders. Workers and demonstrators gathering and meeting. Soviet Premiere Nikita Khrushchev arrives in Poland. His plane is seen landing and he walks down the steps from the plane to the tarmac. Wladyslaw Gomulka is tapped to lead the Communist party in Poland. He is seen speaking to a group assembled. Image of Konstantin Rokossovsky who Gomulka had removed from power after he had led military actions against the reform demonstrators in Poznan. Citizens in Poland celebrate Gomulka's ascension as Communist party leader and his anti-Stalinist reforms. Soviet tanks depart from Poland. English Newspaper headline "Poles sweep Stalinists from Power, Gomulka heads Freedeom Setup." A priest accepts flowers and gifts from people celebrating the return of freedom of religion in Poland.
Crisis in Poland after the imposition of Martial Law by its Military Government. World wide demonstrations and protests against the military rule in Poland supported by Soviet government. A large crowd of demonstrators in Tokya, Japan protests on roads carrying banners and their leader addresses on a microphone. A solidarity leader addresses an assembly of demonstrators in Lisbon, Portugal. Protesters assemble at the Sydney Opera House in Sydney, Australia. Girls with Polish flags sing freedom songs. Hans Dietrich Gentscher from Federal Republic of Germany addresses the people assembled. U.S. Senator Henry Jackson and Dr Jerzy Milesewski support the solidarity and Polish people. A huge demonstration in London with people holding banners and placards in support of solidarity in Poland. Civilians demonstrate on the snow covered roads of Ottawa in Canada. People shout for freedom of Poland. A leader reads his speech. A large crowd assembled to support solidarity in Washington DC, United States. U.S. Ambassador to United Nations condemns the Soviet supported military rule in Poland. German Confederation Labor leader supports Polish solidarity during a summit in Germany. A crowd demonstrates in Philadelphia and marches for Polish solidarity. People in a church pray for freedom and prosperity of Polish people.
The fourth presidential election debate held between Democratic nominee Senator John F. Kennedy and Republican nominee U.S. Vice President Richard Nixon in New York, United States on 21st October 1960. ABC News correspondent Quincy Howe speaks during the debate and allows correspondent Walter Cronkite to ask Senator Kennedy a question. Mr. Cronkite asks Senator Kennedy that in what areas the United States might take offensive against communism rather than being defensive to the Soviet Union. Senator Kennedy replies to the question and says that the eastern Europe is very vulnerable area according to him. He says there should be policies which make it possible to establish closer relation with a country like Poland and he also mentions the Hungarian Revolution. Senator Kennedy speaks about the relations between the Soviet Union and China. He says that India represents a great area for affirmative action by the free world. India started from about the same place that China did. India under a free society has been making some progress. But if India does not succeed, Communism can take over. He says that in Africa, Asia, Latin America, eastern Europe, the great force on their side is the desire of people to be free. Correspondent Howe asks Vice President Nixon to comment on the topic. Nixon speaks about Poland and says that Poland in not in a position to take any independent position under Soviet control. He talks about aids being sent to Poland from the U.S. and says that the U.S. can have more exchange with Poland or with any other Iron Curtain countries.