Life under Soviet domination in Eastern Europe following World War II
Czechoslovakia Date:1955 Duration:2 min 45 sec Sound:Yes
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.
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