Josef Lněnička

* 1930

  • "There was a commander named Cajthaml. He was an idiot as can be. The other guard was some Trepka. He was in jail during the war. After the revolution he became a colonel. The reason why he was in jail during the war was, because of his Romani origin, he was a Gipsy. He used to slap everyone who looked at him falsely. He said that if someone just looks at him badly...He slapped everyone."

  • "After February (1948) group of few girls and boys visited me regularly. One day Mirek Hladík came to me and said: ´Joseph, I´ve been listening to London radio and other radio stations like Free America or so. And I heard them saying that young people - especially scouts - should establish so-called anti-communist groups. I think we should also establish one. I will tell the boys about it. ´And who do we let in? ´. We decided very quickly: Tmej, who´s in Toronto right now. His younger brother is still in Budislav. Also we should include the boys from Proseč village. One of my friends, Odehnal was his name; he made some furniture for me. His older brother was a theater member in Folk House in Poříčí (part of Prague)... We were spreading the leaflets among them, the communist were not hiding anywhere. We wrote the material on the national Committee typewriter."

  • "The army secretary used to come there. His name was Kroulík. He wanted to establish the syndicate there, but no one else wanted it. I was witness myself once when I saw the people rebel against it in the local pub. They refused it. Then I saw something else too: This Mr. Kroulík came to the store once where he met some woman, Mrs. Malšová from Hráz village. She started to yell at him right away: ´Mr. Kroulík I have to tell you something. You have ordered us obscene state give always that is not possible! We are supposed to supply twenty ton of potatoes and some meat...We won´t have enough of potatoes for ourselves! ´ And he told her: ´Take it from the county supplies.´ This has been on record at the court. It was already in May of 1949. Mrs. Malšová went on: ‘But we also want to live, we want to fatten a pig! And what shall I feed him? ´ ´Get him some bread rolls.´ There were also another two boys who´ve heard it. I told to myself: Just you wait, I´ll show you something. I had this Hungary made gun 9 CZ-Rami. I thought I will scare him so bad he won´t ever return to Budislav again. Once he was riding his bike (with no lights on) back from some meeting in Budislav (unsuccessfully anyway). I let him go further enough in front of me to make sure I wouldn´t hurt him and then I fired after him."

  • "We put one of the leaflets into the communist´s box. My friend - his name was Dočkal said: ‘Wait, let´s show them something.’ We put the leaflet behind the glass screen and then he punched the lock so it was unable to open. It was Tuesday, it was the end of some religious period and people just celebrated some relics. That night couple of people was returning from the pub and when they saw the box some of the men defecated underneath of it. At the end it was me who paid for that at the court although we didn´t do it. But as we were putting it there a cousin of my friend Dočkal passed around us (his name was Jaroslav Melša). Later he has been prosecuted too. He got three years in prison for not notifying the offense."

  • "They were also questioning the priest. They asked him things like: ´What´s your name? ´ - ´My name´s Hynek.´ - ´What is your civilian occupation? ´ - ´I´m the priest in Svatá Hora nearby Příbram town.´ - ´What exactly where you doing there during the visit?´ - ´Officer, I was only giving blessings to the relatives.´ - ´All of that stuff is forbidden here, you´re in Bory prison!!!´ But those who wrote they have been in Bory suffered a disciplinary punishment. We were not alowed to even mention that we were in Bory prison."

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Baltimor - USA, 20.09.2008

    duration: 03:35:36
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
  • 2

    Praha, 16.12.2010

    duration: 12:45
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
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When I heard one communist fellow talking to my neighbor I told to myself : Just wait you old man, I´ll show you something!

1181-portrait_former.jpg (historic)
Josef Lněnička
photo: Adam Hradilek

Mr. Josef Lněnička was born on April 11th 1930 in Budislav village nearby Litomyšl town. His father owned a butcher shop there. Josef, who was an avid boy scout and reader of the legionnaires literature also trained to be a butcher. At the end of 1948 when one of his friends got released from prison (he has been jailed for few weeks for sedition and insulting the USSR) he and few other young people established anti communist group. Inspired by foreign radio they started to write and publish anti communist leaflets and planned actions in order to intimidate the local communist officials which forced small farmers to set up cooperatives and were harassing the non communist in many other ways. This group was unaware of any conspiracy principals though and its actions were often lousy performed and improvised. After few actions when Mr. Lněnička scared away some communist officials with the gun in his hand or by firing into the dark, one of his friends also wanted to get a gun and robbed the post office in Budislav village. During the subsequent investigation and thank to one of the group members the whole group has been revealed and all its members were arrested by the StB (former communist state secret police - translator´s note). Unlike the members of the group, the police didn´t underestimate anything and considered that there really is professional destructive group in the region. The following year 19 people who were involved in the case in different ways found themselves in Litomyšl town court. There were often people who refused to give information on their friends. Also four adolescent were prosecuted in this case. Josef Lněnička, who was then 19 years old, was convicted of treason to twenty years in prison. He served almost eight years before he was conditionally released in 1957. He went through the toughest prisons of that time. After the remand in Pardubice town and the custody in Chrudim town he went through Bory, Mírov, Valdice, Ilava and Leopoldov prisons. On his final prison stint he worked as a miner in the Tmavý důl in Rtyně coal mine in Giant Mountains. In 1968 he left to Vienna and later returned back home via Switzerland. He emigrated again in 1981, this time to the USA, where he lives until these days.