1968 Soviet Troops crush Czechoslovakian revolt

The Czechoslovakian military was slowly showing signs of pushing away from the Soviet Union. They didn't want to integrate their military within the Soviet-Warsaw Pact but wanted to plan with the Warsaw Pact's non-Soviet members. Mean while, the Czechoslovakian military was trying to become democratized. The release of Action Program of the Ministry of Defense and Memorandum of the Klement Gottwald Military Political Academy to the Soviet Union were threatening and would influence their next move.

On August 20, 1968, the Soviet Union with nearly 5,000 tanks and 165,000 troops and an additional help from allies of the Soviet Union, invaded Czechoslovakia. The Czechoslovakian government told the invaders that "the illegal occupation of Czechoslovakia be stopped without delay and all armed troops be withdrawn." The Soviet Union tried claiming that they had been invited to try to preserve socialism, but the Czechoslovakian people showed, by protesting in the streets, that they were not welcome. Some of these protests turned violent as some protesters were killed.

By October 16, the Soviet Union and the Czechoslovakian government reached an agreement for the withdrawal of all invading troops besides the Soviet Union's troop. They were temporarily "stationing" themselves in Czechoslovakia.

How does this relate to the Cold War?

One major reason that the Soviet Union invaded Czechoslovakia was because its plans to democratize its military.The release of Action Program of the Ministry of Defense and Memorandum of the Klement Gottwald Military Political Academy was evidence of their plans and how it would take affect. The Soviet Union wanted to preserve socialism and slowly push it onto everyone else. This was a major part of the Cold War. It was the reason that the Soviet Union was building nuclear weapons so that those that did not want to conform would be killed.

Link;
This link above to http://www.globalsecurity.org is the website that was used in writing the summary on the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.

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This image from LIFE magazine from the August 30, 1968 issue shows the young protesters on the streets of Czechoslovakia.




1968 Invasion of Prague



This video shows the actual words of people that were there and how they felt about what was going on. They remarked on how even the Soviet troops seemed confused as to why the Soviet Union and its allies were invading.






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