Section 1 of Directorate X


  • 1974 - 1977 Jiří Dvořák
  • 1977 - 1979 lt. col. Oldřich Mézl
  • 1980 - 1986 maj. Karel Vykypěl 
  • 1986 - 1987 maj. Milan Kopinec 
  • 1987 - 1988 maj. Miroslav Chovanec 

The main activity of Section 1 was the monitoring of so-called right-wing opportunism, domestic opposition, dissidents... This category included expelled members of the Communist party of Czechoslovakia who had taken active part in public life in 1968. At the same time, Section 1 secured the counterintelligence work on some organisations associated in the National front and of organisations active on the entire the territory of Czechoslovakia. Often these were pro-regime organisations which were nevertheless carefully monitored by the State security, such as the Union of Czechoslovak-Soviet friendship.

  • Department 1 – leading persons of the right-wing and Czechoslovak emigration from among leading persons of the right-wing
  • Department 2 - leading persons from among former staff members of the state apparatus
  • Department 3 – operative completion of selected action.

Detailed attention was paid to Charter 77 and the Committee for the defense of the unjustly prosecuted (VONS). Department 3 was dedicated to their surveillance.  Within its information systems, Section 1 kept elaborate records of the Charter 77 signatories and members of VONS. The secret police used so-called preventive measures particularly against representatives of the opposition and dissidents which were supposed to make their life difficult in various ways – such as frequent summons for interrogations and interviews, dismissals from work or different forms of harassment by the authorities. A popular method was the abuse of Art. 19 Act No. 40/1974 Coll., on the National security corps, which provided authorisation to request explanation in connection with the search for criminal acts, offences or misdemeanours. Article 19 was applied for summoning persons of operative interest by Directorate X of the National security corps, not only for the purpose of their interrogation but also as a pretext to prevent their participation in various dissident meetings, protest actions etc.

A highly efficient measure was also the utilisation of the institution of securing a person pursuant to Article 23 Act on the National security corps. The State security namely used the securing for up to 48 hours even in cases when the necessary official act consisted merely of the prevention of further participation of a dissident in “rowdyism or similar actions”. The institution of securing a person was thus understood as one of the possible preventive measures. The secret police used it particularly against the organisation of apartment seminars, for breaking up meetings of underground groups or as a prevention in times of important anniversaries, state holidays or important state visits in the ČSSR.

In 1981-1982, Directorate X organised a nationwide preventive action IZOLACE, which was directed particularly at “causing disorientation and a feeling of meaninglessness of opposition activity” and at the decomposition of dissident groups. Next to that, the State security prepared measures for securing calm during the times of preparation and the execution of important events, such as e.g. teh celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Communist party of Czechoslovakia, the course of the XVIth congress of the Communist party or the elections into representative bodies.

Next to the dissident movement, staff members of Directorate X of the National security corps dealt in detail with a number of other groups of citizens suspected of “enemy opinion”. All these topics fell under the authority of Deparment 2 of Section 1. In the first place, it was the surveillance and influencing of the non-Communist parties in the National front. In these parties, staff members tried first of all to uncover purported “right-wing opportunists”, meaning persons whom they suspected of representing enemy views and striving for a more independent position of their party. However suspicion was aroused by practically anybody who did not identify with the Communist regime without reservations.

As a part of the division of competencies among individual Departments of Section 1, Department 2 was also in charge of so-called illegal written materials. Staff members of this unit thus specialised in uncovering authors and disseminators of all kinds of “illegal” written materials and their copying centres and distribution channels. They searched for technical equipment used for the multiplication of samizdat materials and upon discovery, they then put it out of order.

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