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Hitler at Prague Castle

It was the darkest moment in the modern times of the Czech lands

On Tuesday, March 14, 1939, President Hacha and Foreign Minister Chvalovsky traveled by train to Berlin to negotiate with Hitler an equivalent of an independent state after disconnecting Slovakia from Bohemia. March 15, 1939 Hacha signed a protocol in which he puts the fate of the Czech nation and the country into the hands of the leader of the German Empire after brutal pressure. The Germans did not expect anything and already March 15, 1939 began occupying some areas. A few hours after signing the protocol, Hitler set off on an inspection trip by train to Česká Lípa. Then unplanned to Prague.

Wednesday March 15, 1939 8:00

Hitler sets off from Anhalt Station in Berlin for inspection of German troops aiming

across the occupied Sudeten areas to the rest of Bohemia and Moravia. He is accompanied, among other things, by the SS commander SS Heinrich Himmler and Foreign Minister von Ribbentrop in the future, Czechs known Reinhard Heydrich, who was then the head of the powerful Security Service on behalf of Sicherheitsdienst. Emil Hacha is still in Berlin in those moments. He left the hotel around 11:00 when he went on a train journey back home. At 8:30 the first German troops arrived in Prague. The castle will arrive after 9 am. At 10:00, Hitler reportedly slept much of the journey on the train. He stood up at noon. 14:28 - The train arrived in Česká Lípa. Leaders are welcomed by the leaders of the Germans K. H. Frank and Konrad Henlein. Outside, the weather is extremely bad, the fog is rolling across the landscape, wet snow falls, and the cold is uncomfortable under the coats. Yet the Leader welcomes crowds of Germans. Their enthusiasm is not over. He was so stunned by the rapid progression of the troops that he wanted to become a conqueror at Prague Castle. Hitler's escort was unsure of the suitability of this idea, worried whether the Reich Chancellor would be able to secure a safe journey. But the dictator didn't let his way out. The German Embassy was only informed about the leader's decision to go to Prague around 4 pm. At 16:45, the leader and his entourage move to several vehicles and go to Prague via Mělník. At that time at 4:52 pm, a train with Emil Hácha was scheduled to arrive in Prague from Berlin. However, the Nazis were deliberately delayed for more than three hours to arrive in Prague after Hitler. At that time, groups of agents Abwehr, Sicherheitsdienst and Gestapo are already operating in Prague. Arrests of pre-selected figures of democratic and communist forces, Jews and German emigration began. During the first two days, there were several hundred people. All this under the code name "Aktion Gitter". At 19:15, after a moment's wandering through the streets of Malá Strana, Hitler's Column arrives in the courtyard of Prague Castle. The castle guard and the Czech gendarmes had to make room for the German troops that filled the castle grounds. Above the Castle of the Czech Kings, the same evening, the leader's personal standard waved. At 20:00 Hitler and his entourage were accommodated in a part of the Prague Castle intended for visits. At that time, the Czech ministers who were negotiating seemed to have no idea. Or at least they were not officially notified. 20:30 A group of German officers, General Blaskowitz, who hit Hitler, Himmler et al. they ate an opulent buffet dinner that had been hastily prepared by the German Embassy and Castle Administration. In short, the officers thought it was food for them. Although this historian sounds bizarre, even according to historian Jan B. Uhlíř, it is not a fiction. The story is substantiated by concrete testimonies. But Hitler and his suite, of course, did not stay hungry. Prague's Lippert's delicatessen company was not shamed and immediately provided a replacement dinner. In this context, it is said that Hitler, although abstinent and vegetarian, also tasted the famous Prague ham that evening and sipped Czech beer. President Hacha arrived at the Castle in the evening with a delay. The fact that Hitler no longer knew them there.