CZECHOSLOVAKIA: Outside the Pale

It looked as if the Roman Catholic Church in Czechoslovakia had finally given way to relentless Communist pressure. "Priests and Catholic laymen," said a government spokesman last week, "are now obligated to faithful and effective collaboration ... in the building of socialism."

The Czech puppet Parliament last month passed a church law, by the usual unanimous show of hands, which made all clergymen employees of the state, and set up President Klement Gottwald's Communist son-in-law, Alexej Cepicka, as cabinet minister in charge of religion. The Catholic Church had consistently fought against the law; one manifesto, signed by 80% of the country's...

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