“Media…Mouthpiece of Communism”


Credit: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Living under a communist regime took a toll on the social and educational aspects of the Czech lives. Imagine being under the control of the Soviet Union, restricted to practicing and forms of religion or forbidden to read certain news and media information.

The owning of any type of private media publication under the communist regime in Prague during 1948 was prohibited and any publications were strictly communist. Some anti-communist organizations had small circulations of underground newsletters, this form of print media was strictly passed among those of close relationship to any anti-communist organizations. As said by Communism in Czechoslovakia, “media was the mouthpiece for the communist regime”, all publications were owned by the state and everything published publicly was over viewed by official government press to ensure the continued communist promotion and strict soviet rule.

The strong anti-communist publication, Radio Free Europe was a valuable source for anti-communist media and key in spreading knowledge to remaining European Countries about Soviet Rule in the Czech Republic. Starting in 1950, the early stages of communism, Radio Free Europe had transmission up and running, taking role as the start of anti-communism communication which would become essential in the Czech Republic. Radio Free Europe played a significant role in educating Europeans on activity outside the Iron Curtain as well as sharing information from communist exiles themselves.

The communist party worked against Radio Free Europe as much as they could, using a variety of tactics. According to CzechRadio,  communist secret service sent in undercover agents to Radio Free Europe in order to gain inside knowledge on activities and interfere with broadcasting inside and outside the Czech Republic. Soviets gained knowledge of Radio Frees broadcasting channel and blocked the transmission to the public. This would become a back and fourth run of Radio Free Europe broadcasting to new channels and the Soviets working to block any spreading of information.

While the Soviets worked in multiple ways to end any type of power Radio Free Europe had, the organization resulted in successfully sharing knowledge and information to areas outside of communist rule. The soviets had made several attempts in destroying Radio Free Europe. CzechRadio explains, Soviet agents working inside Radio Free Europe gathered up several plans of attack against Radio Free Europe. Eventually, the organization moved to a higher security location in order for more protection and security against the Soviets.

Radio Free Europe was the largest form of an underground publication during the Soviet reign in the Czech Republic. While under the Soviet reign and strict communism rule, the public was banned from anti-communist media and only given knowledge approved by soviet governing media officials. Those who worked with secret private publications regarding underground media shared information only to specific others whom they trusted. If one were caught with any form of written news that was not overseen by the soviets they would be terrorized and thrown in jail. It was highly likely for those who were caught with outside information that the safety of their family and friends would be jeopardized as well. The communist party controlled almost every aspect of ones life using their terror and strong power over the media to control the actions and lives of those under their rule.





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