75th anniversary of the infamous Munich Agreement

I first became fully aware of the travesty of the 1938 Munich Agreement¬†– whose 75th anniversary is today – when, in the early 1980s, I was researching the life of the Czechoslovak RAF pilot Karel Kuttelwascher. He was my wife’s father and my biography of him was published under the title of “Night Hawk” in 1985. As a result of Munich, he fled Czechoslovakia to await the outbreak of war and his chance to fight.

The consequence of the Munich Agreement was that Czechoslovakia – the only democracy in Central Europe – was utterly dismembered. The country lost over a quarter of its territory and about a third of its population. The web site of the Free Czechoslovak Air Force contains – as well as the full text of the (short) Agreement – a map illustrating the territorial break-up.

Just a reminder: the Agreement was between Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy on the one hand and Britain and France on the other. Czechoslovakia was not allowed to have any representative at the discussions.

One of my short stories is set on the eve of the Munich Agreement. It is called “The Edge Of War” and you can read it here.


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