Husák, Gustav

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Husák, Gustav

(go͝os`täf ho͝o`säk), 1913–91, Czechoslovakian political leader. A member of the Communist party from 1933, he helped to lead the Slovak national uprising against the German occupation in World War II. After the war he held government and party posts. During the 1951 party purges, he was arrested and imprisoned. He was released in 1960, and was allowed to rejoin the party in 1963. A critic of party secretary Antonín NovotnýNovotný, Antonín
, 1904–75, Czechoslovakian Communist leader. A founding member (1921) of the Communist party, he participated (1948) in the Communist seizure of power and became first secretary of the party in 1953.
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, he called for political liberalization and Slovakian national autonomy. Following Novotný's resignation, Husák became (1968) deputy premier and was an architect of the 1968 reforms. After the invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Soviet Union (Aug., 1968), he became increasingly pro-Soviet. In Apr., 1969, he replaced Alexander DubčekDubček, Alexander
, 1921–92, Czechoslovakian political leader. A member of the Slovakian national minority, he was active in the Communist underground in World War II and rose in the party hierarchy after the war, becoming head of the Slovakian Communist party and a
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 as Communist party secretary. He renewed Czechoslovakia's ties with the Soviet Union and reinstituted strong party control over the Czech economy, state, and society. Under his rule Czechoslovakia became a police state with a huge network of government informants. In 1975, Husák combined the offices of first (later general) secretary and president. He resigned from the secretaryship in 1987, but remained president until the 1989 collapse of Communism in Czechoslovakia. He was replaced by Václav HavelHavel, Václav
, 1936–2011, Czech dramatist and essayist, president of Czechoslovakia (1989–92) and the Czech Republic (1993–2003). The most original Czech dramatist to emerge in the 1960s, Havel soon antagonized the political power structure by focusing
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 as president on Dec. 29, 1989.

Husák, Gustav

 

Born Jan. 10, 1913. in Dubravka. near Bratislava. Figure in the Czechoslovak communist and workers’ movement; political figure in the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic. Born into a poor peasant family.

In 1937, Husák graduated from the department of law at Komensky University in Bratislava. In 1929 he joined the Komsomol, and in 1933 he joined the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia (CPC). After the CPC was banned (1938) and Czechoslovakia was broken up by fascist Germany, he was engaged in illegal party work and was a member of the underground leadership of the Bratislava organization of the Communist Party of Slovakia (CPS). In 1940–43 he was imprisoned for communist activity. In 1943 he took part in the establishment of the fifth illegal Central Committee of the CPS. on whose initiative the Slovak National Council and other agencies of the Resistance Movement were formed. Husak participated actively in the Slovak National Uprising of 1944. being at that time the elected deputy chairman of the Slovak National Council in charge of internal affairs. In September 1944 he was elected deputy chairman of’the CPS. In the spring of 1945. as head of the Slovakian delegation, he participated in negotiations with Czechoslovak political figures in Moscow. During these talks agreement was reached on the new government of the Czechoslovak Republic and its program. From April 1945 until 1950 he was a member of the Central Committee of the CPC. Between August 1946 and May 1950 he was chairman of the Board of Commissioners (the government) of Slovakia, and during the years 1945–51 he was a deputy to the National Assembly of the Czechoslovak Republic. In 1950–51 he was chief of a department of the Central Committee of the CPC. In February 1951 he was subjected to illegal repressions and spent the time until May 1960 in prison. In 1963 he was rehabilitated by a decision of the Central Committee of the CPC and restored to the party. Until 1968 he worked as a research worker at the Institute of State and Law of the Slovak Academy of Sciences. He successfully defended his candidate’s dissertation and in 1964 wrote the book Testimony on the Slovak National Uprising (translated from Slovak, Moscow, 1969). Between April and August of 1968, Husák was deputy chairman of the Government of the Czechoslovak SR; between August 1968 and May 1969 he was first secretary of the Central Committee of the CPS. In August 1968, Husák became a member of the Central Committee of the CPC and of the Presidium of the Central Committee of the CPC; later he also became a member of the Executive Committee of the Presidium of the Central Committee of the CPC. Between April 1969 and May 1971 he was first secretary of the Central Committee of the CPC; in May 1971 he became general secretary of the Central Committee of the CPC. In January 1971 he became chairman of the Central Committee of the National Front of the Czechoslovak SR. Husák headed the delegation of the CPC at the international Conference of Communist and Workers’ Parties (Moscow, June 1969). He is a Hero of the Czechoslovak SR (1969) and has been awarded the Order of Lenin (1969).

WORKS

Izbrannye stat’i i rechi. Moscow, 1969.
Projevy a stati: Duben 1969-Leden 1970. Prague, 1970.