Operation Anthropoid Memorial
The monument stands near the buildings IRSM ASCR - near bus stops and interchanges Vychovatelna to Prosek and to street V Holesovickach
Josef Gabcik and Jan Kubis two Czechoslovakian paratroopers involved in Operation Anthropoid, were awaiting the arrival of the acting Reich Protector Reinhard Heydrich at a carefully picked out location,
in a sharp turn of the, at the time, Kirchmayerova Třída (Avenue), nowadays Zenklova, in the back then suburb of Libeň with an intent to assassinate him.
The pillar (nine meter high) is a basal geometric body forming a pedestal for three silhouettes
The triangular cross section column is based in the shape
of the wedge found on the national ﬂag, which we can notice among the silhouettes. Sharp edges symbolize a sword blade, recklessness and battering of tyranny that inﬂ icts humiliation
and suffering. This is the reason that coarse sheet metal was used
on the walls of the cylinder, which is to evoke an impression of
harshness and expression. Its corroding character refers to the
destroyed and blemished Czechoslovak statehood.
Three silhouettes stand on its edge in almost suicidal stands,
ready to plummet into an abyss from its sides, which corresponds to the carried out act.
Basic concept of the monument is the symbol in the form of a triangular wedge of the Czech, or better yet Czechoslovak ﬂag
Two of the silhouettes represent Czechoslovak soldiers and the third is
a representative of the civilians, who’ve played their integral role
in the resistance.
The position in the shape of “Vitruvius” cross
is inspired by the ﬁ gure found on the famous painting of a man
by Leonardo. Th is “anatomical” position of a man is an innuendo
on the name of the entire mission itself – Anthropoid – i.e. man.
Th e silhouettes are depicted as realistic, but without portrait
features of speciﬁ c people. Th ey are intended to depersonalize
out the production line approach to humans as a battle product.
The silhouettes are an innuendo of forgetting real bravery in which
only the truly bold step out of the crowd and in time they become
the “unknown private” of history.
Reinhard Heydrich, the third man of the Third Reich, chief of the Reich Main Security Office and the main architect of the
holocaust, has introduced himself in the Protectorate of
Bohemia and Moravia through an unusual wave of terror. The
exiled representatives of Czechoslovak government in London
have reacted to this fact and at the very end of 1941 they sent
out a paratrooper task force ANTHROPOID, which had a sole
objective: to eliminate Heydrich.
The assassins Josef Kubis and Jan Gabčík were not captured until following the treason by Sergeant Karel
Čurda, in the early morning hours on June 18 1942 at the Church of Saints Cyril
and Methodius in Resslova Street in Prague 2.
A bronze slab is set into the ground in front of the Memorial bearing the sign:
(translated)"Here on this spot on May 27, 1942 at 10:35,
the heroic Czechoslovak paratroopers Jan Kubiš and Josef Gabčík
carried out one of the most signiﬁ cant resistant acts of the Second
World War – assassination of the acting Reich Protector Reinhard
Heydrich. Th ey could never complete their mission without help
from hundred Czech patriots, who paid for their bravery by their
The Memorial’s design
was decided based on a competition opened to artists and architects, announced by the City Hall of the Municipal District of Prague 8, winner of which was the joint design by sculptors David Moješčík and Michal Šmeral and architects Miroslava Tůmová and Jiří Gulbis.
The Operation Anthropoid Memorial had its festive opening on Wednesday May 27, 2009
at 10:35, which was, to the minute, exactly 67 years since the execution of the assassination on the Deputy Reich Protector of Bohemia and Moravia Reinhard Heydrich.
|source: www.cs.wikipedia.org, | www.zpravy.idnes.cz, | www.praha8.cz