Alexander Dubcek - Slovak
- -leader of Slovak communist party, challenged Novotny - the old crusty Stalinist - in Oct '67 for governing power.
- -of Slovakian descent
- -deeply devoted to socialism, spent 13 yrs in USSR w/ his socialist family as a youth
- -Brezhnev could not stop ousting of Novotny, basically stood back and allowed overthrow - - Central Czech Communist party voted him into power - he became leader of party plenum on Jan. 5 1968
"Socialism with a human face"
- Dubcek's plan to reform communist party, which backfired and caused Prague Uprising in '68.
- -basic idea = a communist state based on popular legitimacy and VALID elections ... with main concern being on the people of the country, and not the dictatorship's desires.
- - this type of rule would include being accountable to a National Assembly, transparency of govt activities, and freedom of the press and expression.
- - also, included an end to censorship and honesty about past communist brutalities
August 20-21, 1968
- The invasion of Prague by Soviet tanks, after Dubcek refused to back down on his liberal, democratic policies that he wished to fuse with socialism.
- - 400,000 soviet troops invaded, and Dubcek ordered all military to remain in barracks, offered NO RESISTANCE
- -Dubcek escaped death, but was booted from communist party and expelled into rural isolation
- - Czechoslovakia became one of the most repressive countries in the bloc afterwards