Postbellum

Memory of Nation

 

Tomáš Kulka (1948)

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  Tomáš  Kulka (1948)
There is a paradox: there is always more terror when peace is being negotiated

Response of Czechoslovaks in the kibbutz to the 1968 Soviet invasion

"While at a summer job in the kibbutz, we received the news of the Soviet invasion to Czechoslovakia. We didn't want to believe it; we thought it was nonsense. I still have a fresh memory of Bertík waking us up, saying: 'Get up, guys, the Russians are in Prague.' We told him: 'Bertík, you and your radio...' It took us a while. We were after a hike and wanted to sleep. At nine in the morning, we went to have breakfast and saw all the Czechs from the kibbutz sitting by the radio and giving us looks. After a while, we came to believe it was true. It was a shock, of course. Part of the Literary Papers editorial board was in a kibbutz: Petr Pithart, Ivan Hartel, Chudožilov... After the invasion, all Czechoslovaks gathered in the kibbutz Kfar Masaryk, where they published the Literary Papers statement."

  • born on 18 September 1948
  • his brother Otto moved to Israel the same year
  • in 1963 visited his relatives in Israel
  • in 1967 finished high school in Prague and visited the US
  • 1967-1968 studied philosophy and political economy at Charles University
  • spent August 1968 working a summer job in a kibbutz in Israel
  • 1968-1972 studied at the London School of Economics
  • 1972-1995 lived in Israel, taught in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, contributed to Radio Free Europe
  • underwent a 3-month military training in the Israeli army
  • 1991-2004 editor of the Respekt magazine
  • 1996 moved permanently back to the Czech Republic
  • lives in Prague, lectures at the Charles University
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