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Party Deviations

Clementis’ statement and the latest results of the investigation show that even the Husák-Novomeský group was not concerned with ‘mistakes’ and’ deviations’, but that we were dealing with an organized anti-party factional gang that consciously and deliberately broke the unity of the Republic with its separatist, subversive work. and tried to actually maintain what was referred to as the ‘independent Slovak state’ to separate Slovakia from the Republic at the appropriate time, and which would deliberately hamper the development of socialism and essentially focus on the restoration of capitalism.

From a speech by Štefan Bašťovansky at a meeting of the Central Committee of the Communist Party (February 1951)

An organic part of the life of the Communist Party was the recurring internal crises associated with the search for enemies among members, their expulsion, or even persecution. According to the revelations of some alleged traitors, various party deviations were identified. The main ones being Trotskyism, Bukharism and Titoism. Logically, these tendencies also affected the Czechoslovak environment in the First Republic period. Great discussion also broke out in connection with the Soviet show trials in the second half of the 1930s. The search for traitors in the party again became relevant at the beginning of the Cold War. Unlike before the war, the cases of Czechoslovak “deviants” did not end with their expulsion and defamation. Many of them were imprisoned or even physically eliminated.

Photographs from the magazine Svetozor featuring a headline parodying the Moscow trials. It stated that the bandit Záviš Kalandra had confessed to assassinating Přemysl Otakar II. in a Moravian Field in 1936 (MXX)

Ve dnech 31. května 1950 až 8. června 1950 byl československým komunistickým režimem zinscenován v soudní budově v Praze na Pankráci vykonstruovaný proces s "vedením záškodnického spiknutí proti republice", tzv. proces "Milada Horáková a spol. Na snímku: Obžalovaní Oldřich Pecl (vlevo) a Záviš Kalandra před soudem.
***dobový text***    Proces s třinácti velezrádci a buržoazními rozvratníky před soudem na Pankráci. ***dobový text***

One of the victims of the political trials after February 1948 was Záviš Kalandra (1902-1950). In the years 1923-1936 he was a member of the Communist Party, but left in connection with criticism of the Moscow trials. Pictured together with Oldřich Pecl (1903-1950), who was a member of Kostrufra (student communist faction) in the early 1920s, before the State Court in Prague, June the 4th, 1950. He was executed together with Milada Horákova and Jan Buchal on the 27th of June 1950 (National archive)

Josip Broz Tito (1892-1980) was one of the targets of propaganda after the bust up between Yugoslavia and Moscow. His caricature was published in Dikobraz (Porcupine) magazine as part of a campaign accompanying the trial of Rudolf Slánský and other former communists in 1952 (MXX)


A propaganda pamphlet criticizing Yugoslav developments
was published in 1950
(Petr Blažek’s archive)


The caricature of the representative of Slovak bourgeois nationalism, Vladimír Clementis, written by Štefan Bednář, was published on March the 15th, 1951 in the magazine Nové slovo (New word). On the 2nd of December 1952 Clementis was executed. (MXX)