Showing complete disrespect towards the city’s history, the municipal authorities of Prague 6 district proceeded today to the removal of the statue of Second World War hero and Red Army commander Ivan Spepanovic Konev.
For a long time, under the tolerance of local authorities, the statue had been a target of vandalisms. Last August, unknown thugs had desecrated the monument with spray paint writing anti-soviet slogans. The attack took place on the eve of the 51st anniversary of the Soviet intervention against the counterrevolutionary uprising of 1968.
As a response to the vandalism, Prague 6 authorities had decided to… cover up the statue as the cheapest way to protect it from future attacks, while mayor Ondrej Kolar proposed its removal. The decision was condemned by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
According to Prague 6 officials, the statue - which had been unveiled in 1980 - will be transferred to a museum while a new monument will be erected to honor the liberators of the city.
However, the stance of Czech authorities consist an example of disrespect which has its roots in anti-communism. Soviet Marshal Ivan Konev was the man who led the Red Army troops that entered Prague on May 6, 1945 thus liberating Czechoslovakia from the Nazi yoke.
A hero of the Second World War, Konev later appointed head of the Soviet forces in East Berlin and in 1956 he was named Commander in Chief of the Warsaw Pact Armed Forces. He had a leading role in the effective suppress of the imperialist-backed 1956 counterrevolution in Hungary.