October 19, 2021 • 18:15
photo: Archive of the security forces and Prokop Tomek
More than thirty years after November 1989, Prague’s Bartolomějská Street remained synonymous with communist State Security. But is it that right? Over the years, the StB has occupied dozens of buildings throughout Prague, not to mention conspiracy apartments, where estébáci met with their collaborators, or observatories near the western embassies. Accept the summons to visit places whose addresses were once state secrets.
At the end of 1987, a total of 56,979 members served in the National Security Corps. Of this, 12,502 persons belonged to the State Security. That wasn’t much for a $ 15 million state. Although the StB was not omniscient, it still managed to keep society in fear for many years. Counterintelligence has acted against foreign intelligence and ordinary people who want to stay in touch with the world behind the Iron Curtain. She watched the opponents of the communist regime and people who just want to live, think and have fun in their own way, without the supervision of the party and the state. State security is used by secret collaborators, wiretaps, provocations, physical and mental violence, she read private letters.
Scattered throughout the Prague were offices of security forces, prisons, but also hostels, training centers, conspiracy villas, telephone exchanges, transmitters, observatories, warehouses and garages, offices of many rear and security departments to meeting apartments. To some extent, such dispersion was guaranteed, but it was also a consequence of the known lack of non-residential premises. State security needed many offices for its office. The public often did not know about them. Estébáci meet with their co-workers in other or cafes and conspiracy apartments. Even such places certainly aroused further interest, especially when, in the time of permanent new housing discoveries in permanently uninhabited flats and houses, a pair or groups of attentive men occasionally looked around.
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