Many prominent figures asked clemency – among them Albert Einstein, world-wide known philosopher Bertrand Russel, Winston Churchill and Eleanor Roosevelt – but with no succes. Czechoslovak communists decided that Horáková needed to be sentenced to dead.
“We started at 8 in the morning and then after 8 hours another investigator came, we just had 8-hours shifts three times a day. When one went to sleep, another came and so on. We didn’t let any arrested person sleep sometimes for two days if it was needed. We just wanted that accused people start to twist their testimonies because of lack of sleep.” – a police officer about the investigation methods in the communist countries.
Her life was tough. Born on December 25th,1901 in Prague, she witnessed The First World War and was just 17 when the country of Czech and Slovaks– Czechoslovakia – was formed. She was born in Prague and studied the law at Charles University there and graduated in 1926. In the same year she joined Czechoslovak political party and she fought for women’s rights. She worked at The Prague City Council as well.
In autumn of 1938 she helped Czech refuges when Sudetenland were occupied by Nazis. She and hundreds of other women made underground resistance movement in the begining of The Second World War. They helped to hide men who wanted to join the Czechoslovak Army in the West from the Gestapo. Germans arrested Horáková in the spring of 1940 because as they claimed that she was a dangerous opponent for Germany. Her name was heard many times during testimonies of other accused, then she was self ruthlesslu intrrogated. Eventually, she got life-imprisonment sentence and later on she was imprisoned in various prisons like one in Terezin Malá pevnost. After being sentenced for 8-years imprisonment in 1944 she was sent to a prison next to Munich. She was liberated by Americans and she returned to Prague. She said about that time in the letter to her family: “I could have been dead like my other 27 friends, but I came back to you”.
Her every step was tracked by communist spies after the WW II when she was elected a member of the National Socialist Party and elected as a member of Provisional National Assembly of Czechoslovakia.
In February 1948 The Communistic Party of Czechoslovakia won the election and Horakova resigned tof her membership in Parliament and because of that she lost her immunity. Two weeks later the son of the first president of Czechoslovakia, the Minister of Foreigen Affairs of Czechoslovakia – Jan Masaryk went missing and later found dead in his appartment. Horakova was sure that he was murdered by Communists. She didn’t emigrated like many Czech politicians and she was arrested in the end of September, 1949.
She and her 12 colleagues were sentenced. They were “selected”. Each of them was representing another political party. She was the only woman sentenced. Among them was Záviš Kalandra – a journalist and writer. Her lawsuit began on June 1st 1950 and was discussed in the public – in the newspapers, on the National Radio. It became a show trial. It was just a beginning of the Communistic terror. No one should feel safe. Historians say that about 200 people were executed by hanging in the first two years of the regime of The Communistic Party in Czechoslovakia.
She was accused of espionage and a high treason. She and three another prisoners were sentenced to death by hanging on June 27th, 1950. Another four arrested got lifetime punishment. The 71-year-old Vojtech Dundr got 15-years-punishment but he died in prison. The ashes of Milada Horáková weren’t given to her family and nobody knows what became of them. She was a victim of communistic regime – Winston Churchill was sure that it was “cruel, juristic murder”. She died in pain and after 15 minutes. He knew that she and her colleagues were innocent.
In 1991, President Václav Havel awarded Milada Horáková in memoriam with the Order of T.G.Masaryk. 65 anniversary of her unfair dead was held this year
Her daughter Jana on the death and the testimony of her mother
http://www.ustrcr.cz/en/milada-horakova-en/ (a full biography)
http://www.wykop.pl/ramka/1466795/symbol-zamiast-realnej-kobiety-milada-horakova/ (a symbol instead of a real woman)
https://cs.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proces_se_skupinou_Milady_Hor%C3%A1kov%C3%A9 (lawsuit of M.Horakova)