Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Prague, August 20-21, 1968

Today and tomorrow mark the 40th anniversary of the Soviet and Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia.

Sweden's foreign minister Carl Bildt has a commemorative post on his weblog. Excerpt (my tr.):

And just after midnight it all began. Soviet special troops took over the airport. In surged the rumbling Antonovs carrying the airborne detachments, guided by the plane that had parked on the edge of the field.

The Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia - Operation Donau to the Soviet staffs - had started.

But 40 years ago it was still just the twentieth of August.

And most of Europe was enjoying the summer, sleeping or relaxing.

The calm before the tragedy.

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