August 20 - 1968 - Warsaw Pact Nations Invade Czechoslovakia
Throughout the early months of 1968, under the leadership of Alexander Dubcek, Czechoslovakia underwent a series of reforms from its previous hard-line Communist government. Increasing freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and economic reformation, the real striking element of what would be known as the "Prague spring" was a contemplation of multiparty democracy. This was severely bothersome to the Soviet Union. As the head of the Warsaw Pact nations, the Soviet Union viewed its allies as a bulwark against anti-Communist forces, and then-Soviet premier Leonid Brezhnev was highly concerned about changes inside Communist nations. Signed in 1955, the Warsaw Pact was a mutual defense treaty against foreign invasion. Yet in August of 1968, the Warsaw Pact was used to invade one of its members. On the night of August 20, troops from the Soviet Union, Poland, Hungary, and Belarus invaded Czechoslovakia, easily taking the Prague airport and conducting an airborne invasion. Dubcek was arrested and taken to Moscow and Soviet troops were in control of the country by August 21. After that, the Prague spring was over.