Thursday, August 21, 2008

Poland and Russia (1980)

Poland and Russia (1980) Dry Bones cartoon
Today's Golden Oldie is from August 1980 and is about the struggle for freedom in Communist Poland. I'm showing the cartoon because of the current growing tension between Russia and Poland because of the Polish government's leaning to the West.

Today's readers might not understand the punchline advising the Polish leader against taking any "trips to to Moscow". Back then it was obvious. It was a reference to something that was still fresh in people's minds.

In 1968, 12 years earlier, the Czechoslovakian government attempted to liberalize Communist rule. The reforms were called "Prague Spring". But the Russians took a no-nonsense approach and on August 20, 1968, invaded Czechoslovakia. They took control of Prague, grabbed the Czechoslovakian leader Alexander Dubček and other reformers and...

"Dubček and the others were taken to Moscow on a Soviet military transport aircraft (reportedly one of the aircraft used in the Soviet invasion).

Despite the inspired nonviolent resistance of the Czech and Slovak population, the reformers had little hope of holding out against Soviet pressure and ultimately were forced to accede to Soviet demands, signing the Moscow protocols. (Only František Kriegel refused to sign.)

Dubček and most of the reformers were returned to Prague on August 27 " -more

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Topic For Discussion:

The Russian invasion of Czechoslovakia took place in August, during the 1968 Democratic National Convention.

Russian problems with the struggle in Poland took place in August during the 1980 Democratic National Convention.

And now the Russians seem to be getting hot under the collar about Poland, and it is August, and the Democratic National Convention is next week.

Your thoughts please.

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