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In Antinazi Resistence

The first central leadership of the illegal Communist Party was destroyed by the Gestapo in February 1941 Only Jan Zik, who later formed a second central leadership, was able to escape. The situation concerning the communist resistance changed after the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, when it significantly developed its activity and gained the sympathy of a large part of Czech society. The illegal Communist Party became part of the nationwide anti-occupation movement, and in the autumn of 1941 it led negotiations with other resistance networks to create a single unified body. Efforts to integrate the resistance also included a plan to create a National Revolutionary Intelligence Committee, which was worked on by journalist Julius Fučík, a member of Zik’s central leadership. It was unveiled in the summer of 1942, followed by two more central leaderships. The activities of the illegal Communist Party ranged from publishing resistance newspapers, through to spreading of news or inciting agitation in factories and even to the carrying out of sabotage activities. In May 1945, the Communist Party emerged from illegality and became an important player in the uprising against the occupiers Its representatives tried, among other things, to prevent the participation of soldiers of the Russian Liberation Army (known as The Swallows) in the fighting on the side of the insurgents. Many members or sympathizers of the Communist Party died at Nazi execution sites or were murdered in concentration camps.

The leading representative of the second illegal central leadership of the Communist Party was the shoemaker Jan Zika (archive of Jaroslav Čvančara)

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Julius Fučík managed to write an impressive work while in Pankrác prison called Notes from the gallows, in the conclusion of which he admitted that in order to divert the Gestapo’s attention from important personalities of Czech culture, he revealed the names of some resistance fighters. The revised text later became the cornerstone of the Fučík cult, which was to inspire the young generation in the fight for communist ideas * the cover of Julius Fučík’s identity card (archive of Jaroslav Čvančara)

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Fučík came up with the idea of publishing the illegal satirical magazine Trnaveček, for which he created cartoons (archive of Petr Koura)

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The national revolutionary committee of intelligence, which was tasked with involving intellectuals and artists in the communist resistance, was led by the writer Vladislav Vančura, who was later executed during the second period of martial law. After the war, the Communist Party announced him as one of them, even though he had been expelled from the party in 1929 (archive of Jaroslav Čvančara)

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The journalist Jožka Jabůrková was a pre-war Prague representative for the Communist Party. She was arrested in March 1939, and imprisoned in the Ravensbrück concentration camp, where she was tortured on the 31st of July, 1942 (archive of Jaroslav Čvančara)