COMMUNISTS: And Now, the Czechs

Czechoslovakia had been spared longer than most of her neighbors. This week it seemed to be the Czechs' turn. Communist Premier Klement Gottwald was getting set to turn the country into a one-party state. In Prague, Czechoslovakia's ailing, tenacious little President Eduard Benes backed into what might be the last-ditch fight of his life.

After a weekend of sustained government crisis, Gottwald acted. Police of Communist Vaclav Nosek's Interior Ministry, armed with tommy guns and bayoneted rifles, surrounded most government offices and the Prague radio station. The Czech radio announced that the border was closed to all except those with...

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