Radula Gajda

Gajda, Radula


(pseudonym of Rudolf Geidl). Born Feb. 14, 1892, in Kotor, Montenegro; died 1948. Counterrevolutionary figure and adventurist.

Gajda was a pharmacist in Bohemia. At the beginning of World War I (1914-18) he served as a noncommissioned medical officer in the Austro-Hungarian Army. In 1915 he deserted to the Montenegrin side, posing as an officer. From 1917 he commanded a company, a battalion, and a regiment in the Czechoslovak Corps in Russia and actively participated in its counterrevolutionary revolt in May 1918. In September 1918 he commanded a Czechoslovak division and from October, the Ekaterinburg sector of the front. He helped establish the dictatorship of Admiral A. V. Kolchak, deserted to his army, and commanded the Siberian Army with the rank of lieutenant general. Kolchak removed Gajda from his post and demoted him in the summer of 1919. Later, he led an anti-Kolchak Socialist Revolutionary revolt in the Far East in November 1919, and he was arrested and handed over to the Czechoslovak command. During 1924-26 he was deputy and in 1926, chief of the General Staff of the Czechoslovak Army with the rank of general. Gajda was reduced to the ranks in 1926 for his role in an attempted fascist coup. He founded and led the organization of Czechoslovak fascists (the so-called National Fascist Community). He was imprisoned in 1931 for bandit activities. During World War II (1939-45), Gajda collaborated with the Hitlerites, heading the Czechoslovak fascist committee of St. Vaclav. In 1945 he was arrested by the Czechoslovak government and was later executed by sentence of a popular tribunal.