How did Stalinism manifest itself in the Czechoslovakian context in the immediate aftermath of the Second World War?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Stalin's influence was immediately evident in Czechoslovakia once World War II had ended and the European continent was being partitioned by the Russians and the Americans.  Stalin recognized the opportunity to fundamentally create a bloc of satellite states that would create a buffer between the Soviet Union and "the West."  Stalin was able to centralize the government in Czechoslovakia and create the apparatus for a planned economy, moving the nation towards a Soviet style of Communism.  This was reflective of Stalinism in the demonstrative nature of centralized control over all affairs, including the eventual abolition of private property.  Another way in which Stalinism presented itself was the purging of so- called "dissident" elements in Czechoslovakia.  This type of public and brutal repression is reflective of Stalinism, almost a calling card of sorts.  Stalin's brand of socialist- realism in both culture and art took over as the cult of personality that had become so apparent in Stalin's rule in the Soviet Union permeated Czechoslovakia, including the elimination of the Catholic Church as a source of refuge for many.  The nationalization of all elements in terms of economic means of production and "any enterprise having over 50 employees" became another element of Stalinism present in Czechoslovakia.  The proliferation of manual labor and "heavy industry" requiring a massive labor pool of "workers" became another trait that Stalin's influence created in Czechoslovakia.  

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