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Czechoslovak military units in the USSR (1942 - 1945)
Sources and links
[updated 30.11.2018]


Besides archive funds, I offer additional resources from which I have drawn. I also refer to other authors about Czechoslovak units or, on the contrary, their enemies. And finaly, you can find here an overview of books or films.


Pages relevant to Czechoslovak Eastern resistance
  • 1939 - Legion Czechosłowacki [in Polish] - (mirror page) dedicated to Czechoslovak legion in Poland...
  • Air Aces - The Best Czechoslovak Fighter Pilots In The Soviet Union [in English, Czech]
  • Air Aces - The Best Czechoslovak Fighter Pilots in WW2 [in English, Czech]
  • Air Aces - The Best Czechoslovak Fighter Pilots during Slovak National Uprising (29th August - 27th October 1944) [in English, Czech]
  • Battle for Dukla Pass [in English] - by Bill Tarkulich...
  • Carpatho-Dukla's operation [in English] - by Bill Tarkulich...
  • Czechoslovak Women Fighting in Foreign Military Units during World War II [in English, Czech, Russian] - about women who voluntarily served and fought in foreign military units during the Second World War in the Soviet Union, England, Yugoslavia and in the Middle East...
  • Database of Czechoslovak military units' membres in WW2 [in Czech] - including those from Eastern front. Database was created by Czech Military historical archive. Manual how to use it, you can read here...
  • Dukla 1944 [in Czech] - they fought for us in the Carpathian-Dukels operation...
  • Ludvík Svoboda [in Czech] - the official page of Czechoslovak commander...
  • Military museum in Svidník [in English, Slovak] - represents exposure from the battle of Dukla Pass and combats in Eastern Slovakia...
  • National cultural monument Duklianske bojisko [in English, Slovak] - in the scope of the Military Historical Institute in Svidník and Dukle is specialized care of the Duklianske bojisko - a national cultural monument registered in the Central List of the Monument Fund...
  • The World War II Memorial Hrabyně [in English, German, Polish] - the Second World War Memorial in the village of Hrabyně is one of the six exhibition premises of the Silesian Museum. It is located in the immediate vicinity of the site of one of the most intense battles to have taken place on the territory of the modern-day Czech Republic during the Second World War. The Memorial aims chiefly to illustrate the history of the Second World War period, acquire thematically related exhibits and gather information on members of the Czechoslovak home and foreign resistance and on the victims of persecution by the Nazi regime. It also focuses on the study of and research into the wartime period...
  • OBD Memorial [in Russian, English] - united open access data bank "Memorial" is a bank of personal information about the defenders of the Fatherland, killed in action, dead and reported missing during the Great Patriotic War and in the post-war period (including Czechoslovaks)...
  • Pamjať naroda [in Russian, English] - web page helps to establish the fate of relatives who participated in the Great Patriotic War; find information about soviet awards; read the original archival documents containing information about the participants of the war and the course of the war: reports of the dead and missing, award lists (also of Czechoslovaks), combat logs...
  • Post Bellum - Memory of nation [in English, Czech] - nongovernment and noncommercial organization founded in 2001. Systematically striving for community satisfaction of Czech (Czechoslovak) war veterans. Web page offered textual, visual and sound memories of our heroes...
  • Slovak union of antifascism warriors [in Slovak] - politicaly independent organization, which associate legionaries, members of WW2 resistance and Slovak national uprising (SNU). Page brings information about SNU and 2nd Czechoslovak paradesant brigade...

Other pages relevant to topic
  • Axis history [in English] - everything you need to know about German Army and its allies...
  • Feldgrau.com [in English] - research on the German Armed Forces 1919-1945...
  • Orders and Medals of USSR [in Russian] - professional and detailed information about Soviet military awards.
  • Royal Hungarian Army [in English] - detail information about Hungarian military units...
  • The Soviet Military Awards page [in English] - dedicated to providing quality infromation about the military and labor awards of the former Soviet Union.

Books relevant to Czechoslovak Eastern resistance
(author - book - translation of title to English - publisher - brief annotation)
  • Benčík Antonín, Richter Karel - Vražda jménem republiky (Murder in name of the Republic) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2006 (3rd edition) - this 3rd edition was completed with new information from the most secret archives of communist regime about political murder of general Heliodor Píka - one of the most honourable Czechoslovak patriot, military expert and diplomat, personality number one of Czechoslovak eastern revolt.
  • Bejček E., Hanzlík F. - Voják se srdcem bohéma (Soldier with heart of Bohemian) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2006 (1st edition) - biography about genmjr. Tesařík Richard - one of the famous Czechoslovak commanders and "Hero of the Soviet Union". Beyond short memories from period of WW2, the book describes Tesarik's next destiny in communist period when "to be a hero" did not count.
  • Brož Miroslav - Hrdinové od Sokolova (Heroes from Sokolovo) [in Czech], Ministerstvo obrany ČR - Avis, 2005 - list of members of the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Field Battalion and participants of the Battle of Sokolov March 8, 1943.
  • Demčín Jan - Můj útěk do gulagu (My escape into the Gulag) [in Czech], Radan Lášek - Codyprint, Praha 2001 - autobiography of Jan Demcik, Rusyn, who, like thousands of Rusyns, after the occupation of the Subcarpathian Rus, escaped to the USSR where he was arrested, sentenced and sent to the Soviet camps - gulag. He was lucky to have survived. In 1943, he joined the Czechoslovak unit in the USSR, where he became commander of the 2nd Tank Battalion.
  • Fajtl František - Podruhé doma (Second Time at Home) [in Czech], Naše Vojsko, Praha 1984 (1st edition) - book depicts departure of the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Fighter Air Regiment from the Slovak National Uprising, and following reorganization of Regiment to the higher unit the 1st Czechoslovak Composite Air Division, and its participation in the Ostrava combat operation.
  • Fidler Jiří - Sokolovo 1943 (Sokolovo 1943) [in Czech], Lípa, Vizovice 2002 (1st edition) - book is divided in two parts. First part deals with Czechoslovaks during the Soviet-German war in March 1943, the second part contains encyclopedic dictionary on the battle of Sokolovo 1943.
  • Kopecký Milan - 1. čs. samostatná tanková brigáda v SSSR (1st Czechoslovak Independent Tank Brigade in the USSR) [in Czech], MBI, Praha 2001 (1st edition) - the book describes organization of Czechoslovak tank units in USSR (Battalion later Brigade) and their combat experience from 1943 to 1945.
  • Kopecký Milan - Československý samostatný ženijní prapor 1 (1944 - 1945) (1st Czechoslovak Independent Engineering Battalion 1944 - 1945) [in Czech], Ministerstvo obrany ČR, Praha 2007 (1st edition) - the book describes creation, organization and equipment of the 1st Czechoslovak independent engineering battalion in the USSR, as well as it's engineering and militant activity in period 1944 - 1945.
  • Kopecký Milan - Československý sborový dělostřelecký pluk 5 (1944 - 1945) (5th Czechoslovak Corps Artillery Regiment) [in Czech], Ministerstvo obrany ČR, Praha 2012 (1st edition) - the book describes the establishment, organization, equipment and combat route of this artillery unit.
  • Kopecký Milan, Sehnálek Petr - Poslední výstřely (Bojová cesta 1. československého armádního sboru v SSSR v květnu 1945) (The last gunshots) [in Czech], MAGNET PRESS SLOVAKIA s.r.o., Bratislava 2017 (1st edition) - brings as a very first work of its kind a comprehensive description the activities of the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps in the USSR in the liberation of Moravia in May 1945.
  • Kulka Erich - Židé v československé Svobodově armádě (Jews in Czechoslovak Svoboda's army) [in Czech, exist editions in English and Hebrew], Naše Vojsko, Praha 1990 (1st edition) - the book brings information about Jewish participation in Czechoslovak military units in the USSR.
  • Pop Ivan - Dějiny Podkarpatské Rusi v datech (History of Subcarpathian Rus) [in Czech], Libri, Praha 2005 (1st edition) - the book describes historical destiny of Subcarpathian Rus and its nation of Rusyns, which was coupled with Czechoslovakia from 1919 to 1939.
  • Richter Karel - Přes krvavé řeky (Across the bloody rivers) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2003 (1st edition) - the book describes (free of censorship and legends rendered by former communist regime) the begining of Czechoslovak revolt on Eastern front and the end on eve of the Slovak national uprising. This book brings new views about the following themes: how strong was the communist influence on the formation of Czechoslovak unit, what relations were between Czechoslovak exile government in London and Soviet leadership, how it was with persecution of Czechoslovak citizens and their detention in Soviet gulags and more.
  • Richter Karel - Apokalypsa v Karpatech (Apocalypse in the Carpathian Mountains) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2003 (1st edition) - continuation of the book "Across the bloody rivers", which brings some unknown facts about the Dukla's operation in Carpathian Mountains (1944).
  • Richter Karel - Dobývání domova I. (Conquering home I.) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2005 (1st edition) - the book describes liberation of Czechoslovak territory by members of the 1st Czechoslovak army corps after bloody combats in Carpathian Mountains until March 1945.
  • Richter Karel - Dobývání domova II. (Conquering home II.) [in Czech], Ostrov, Praha 2005 (1st edition) - the book describes liberation of Czechoslovak territory by members of the 1st Czechoslovak army corps from March to May 1945.
  • Richter Karel - Podkarpatští Rusíni v boji za svobodu (Rusyns in combat for freedom) [in Czech], Společnost přátel Podkarpatské Rusi, Česká expedice, Praha 1997 (1st edition) - about soldiers of Rusyn nationality in Czechoslovak units during World War 2 (Eastern front).
  • Richter Karel - Válka začala v Polsku (War began in Poland) [in Czech], Epocha, Praha 2004 (1st edition) - the book brings uknown information about German-Soviet aggression against Poland. Also describes foundation of the first foreign Czechoslovak military unit - Czech and Slovak legion.
  • Svoboda Ludvík - Z Buzuluku do Prahy (From Buzuluk to Prague) [in Czech, publication exists also in Russian], Mladá Fronta, Praha 1974 (1st edition in 1960) - author of this book was self commander of the Czechoslovak military units general Svoboda. He describes the whole path from Buzuluk to Prague. Unfortunatelly the story was written assessable to communist ideology, therefore some text must be taken with restraint.
  • Šáda M., Krátký K., Beránek J. - Za svobodu Československa II. (For the Freedom of Czechoslovakia II.) [in Czech], Naše vojsko, Praha 1961 - publication written by a collective of the Military Historical Institute, devoted to the combat operations of the Czechoslovak units from 1944 to 1945. Contents: Establishment and organization of the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps in the USSR; Corp's participation in the Carpatho-Dukla's operation; History of the 2nd Czechoslovak Independent Parachute Brigade in the USSR; 1st Czechoslovak Independent Tank Brigade in the USSR and its participation in the liberation of the Ostrava region.
  • Šmoldas Zdeněk - Českoslovenští letci v boji proti fašismu (Czechoslovak pilots in combat against fascism) [in Czech],Naše vojsko, Praha 1987 (1st edition) - the book brings summary information about organization and military activity of Czechoslovak air units abroad (Spain, Poland, France, Great Britain, USSR).
  • Zudová-Lešková Zlatica - Židé v boji a odboji (Jews in the Struggle and Resistance) [in Czech], Historický ústav AV ČR, v.v.i., Praha 2007 - about resistance of Czechoslovak Jews in the Second World War.
Across the bloody rivers (1st edition) Apocalypse in the Carpathian Mountains (1st edition) Conquering home I. (1st edition) Conquering home II. (1st edition) From Buzuluk to Prague Sokolovo 1943 (1st edition) 1st Czechoslovak independent tank brigade in the USSR (1st edition) 1st Czechoslovak independent engineering battalion (1st edition) Rusyns in combat for freedom (1st edition) Jews in Czechoslovak Svoboda's army (1st edition) Czechoslovak pilots in combat against fascism (1st edition)


Bibliography, supporting publications
(author - book - translation of title to English - publisher - brief annotation)
  • Army of Victory in the Great Patriotic War 1941 - 1945 [in Russian], Charvest, Minsk 2005 - contains a complete overview and description of all types of weapons and combat techniques that were armed by the Red Army, and the Czechoslovak units in the USSR as well.
  • Pulec Vladivoj - Československá státní vyznamenání, státní čestná uznání a ceny (Czechoslovak state awards, state honorary mentions and prizes) [in Czech], SNTL + Alfa, Praha 1980 (1st edition) - an overview of the orders and awards for the participants of the Second World War II.

Authentic records
  • Buzuluk (Buzuluk), 1942 or 1943, 4:14 min.
  • U československé vojenské jednotky v SSSR (At the Czechoslovak military unit in the USSR) [in Czech], 1943, 12 min. - the film documents the activities of the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Field Battalion in the USSR in the period from the end of 1942 to 30 January 1943. The battalion was formed and trained since February 1942 in Buzuluk. The whole film is divided into three parts. The first shows unit training in the winter of 1942-1943, including mortar shootings and an anti-tank rifle PTRD. The second part consists of the ceremonial handover of the combat banner to the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Battalion on 27 January 1943 in Buzuluk, which receives Battalion Commander Col. Ludvik Svoboda from Chief of the Czechoslovak Military mission in the USSR Col. Heliodor Píka. The ceremony ends with a parade. The conclusion of the film depicts the farewell of members of the unit and the departure of the 1st Czechoslovak Independent Battalion in the USSR on the front on January 30, 1943.
  • Bitva o dukelský průsmyk, září - říjen 1944 (Battle for Dukla Pass, September - October 1944) 1944, 3:38 min.

Documentary films
  • Dukla - krev a mýtus I. (Dukla - blood and myth I.) [in Czech], 1999, 56 min. - the Battle of the Dukla Pass was the most difficult battle that was attended by Czechoslovak soldiers on the Eastern Front during the Second World War. The documentary is spoken by witnesses who have gone through the famous Carpatho-Dukla's operation operation - former commanders and first-line soldiers, nurses or front doctors. The document presents some facts that have never been openly spoken, and depicts the fragments of the human stories that have taken place in this war machine. The first part of the document reconstructs the causes that led to the unexpected massacre of the Czechoslovak units at the beginning of the operation and deals with the question of the responsibility of Czechoslovak and Soviet command.
  • Dukla - krev a mýtus II. (Dukla - blood and myth II.) [in Czech], 1999, 57 min. - the second part of the documentary follows the continuation of the military operation in the area of the Dukla Pass in the autumn of 1944, after the exhausting fights were transferred to the territory of Slovakia. Besides witnesses from former Czechoslovak soldiers, this time also speaks war veterans from the German Wehrmacht who fought against the Red Army (Czechoslovaks) in this battle. Their testimony shows an unfamiliar view of the war events from the oposite side of the front.

Movies
  • Tanková brigáda (The tank Brigade) [in Czech, English subtitles], 1955
  • Tenkrát o vánocích (That Christmas), 1958
  • Práče (Laundryboy), 1960
  • Brána k domovu (Gate to Home), 1975
  • Sokolovo (Sokolovo), 1975



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