Couriers and people-smugglers as a form of anti-communist resistance Cover Image

Kurýři a převaděči jako jedna z forem protikomunistického odboje
Couriers and people-smugglers as a form of anti-communist resistance

Author(s): Libor Svoboda
Subject(s): Political history, Recent History (1900 till today), Security and defense, WW II and following years (1940 - 1949), Post-War period (1950 - 1989), History of Communism
Published by: Ústav pro studium totalitních režimů
Keywords: 20th century; 50s; couriers; smugglers; communism; resistance; intelligence; Czechoslovakia; security;
Summary/Abstract: Dispatching couriers was a long-standing and traditional method of intelligence work. People were illegally sent across what was called the green border to the territory of another state where they carried out intelligence missions of various types: they acquired important information related to security, the economy and the military, recruited collaborators, brought people across the border and in some cases carried out sabotage behind enemy lines. They operated on foreign territory for a limited period, depending on the mission in question – from a few hours to several weeks or even months. For reasons of conspiracy, the couriers acted in utter secrecy and sometimes assumed false identities. Couriers were closely linked to the activities of people-smugglers; indeed, the two terms are very frequently interchangeable as many couriers also operated as people-smugglers. A people-smuggler was somebody who actively helped others to cross state borders illegally. Many of them were also linked to foreign intelligence headquarters, for which they also ensured the cross-border passage of couriers; they helped them prepare for operations inside Czechoslovakia and also provided them with logical assistance (with accommodation, food, etc.). Thanks to their actions, couriers and people smugglers, who are often forgotten today, made an important mark on the history of Czechoslovakia’s anti-communist resistance.

  • Page Range: 9-17
  • Page Count: 9
  • Publication Year: 2014
  • Language: Czech