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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 03, 1980

REPORT OF THE CHIEF OF THE GENERAL STAFF OF THE CZECHOSLOVAK ARMY, COLONEL GENERAL MIROSLAV BLAHNíK, TO MINISTER OF NATIONAL DEFENSE ARMY GENERAL MARTIN DZúR

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    Report of the Chief of the General Staff of the Czechoslovak Army, Colonel General Miroslav Blahník, to Minister of National Defense Army General Martin Dzúr regarding troop exercises
    "Report of the Chief of the General Staff of the Czechoslovak Army, Colonel General Miroslav Blahník, to Minister of National Defense Army General Martin Dzúr," December 03, 1980, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Investigation Commission of the House of Representatives of the Czech Republic. Obtained and translated by Oldrich Tuma. http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/111987
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3 December 1980.

Respected Comrade,
Marshal of the Soviet Union N. V. OGARKOV, Chief of the General Staff of the USSR Armed Forces, with the participation of General Colonel ABOLINS, Vice-Chief of the General Staff and General Colonel TIERESHCHENKO, First Vice-Chief of Staff of the Soviet Armed Forces, provided clarification of the planned exercise. Present were General Colonel [Horst] ŠTECHBART,56 Commander of the NVA [National People's Army] Land Forces of the GDR, and Armed Forces General [Tadreusz] CHUPALOVSKI,57 First Vice-Chief of the General Staff of the PPA [Polish People's Army]. The plans assume carrying out two exercises. The first is a divisional tactical exercise independently carried out on each division's home territory and on the territory of the Polish People's Republic [PPR] over a period of 5-6 days. The second is a command and control field exercise with communication equipment and partly-deployed forces on PPR territory. 4 to 5 divisions of the Soviet Army (of the Baltic, Belarussian and Carpathian Military District and the 31st tank division of the Central Group of Soviet Forces) will take part in both exercises. From the other armies: one division from the NVA of the GDR, four divisions of the PPA and two tank divisions of the CSPA [Czechoslovak People's Army].

Divisional tactical exercises will be carried out in two phases. The first phase will be carried out independently on each division's home territory over two to three days (see map). Following the completion of the divisional tactical exercises, both tank divisions of the CSPA shall gather together near the border with the Polish People's Republic.

An order from the General Staff of the USSR Armed Forces will set the date and time for crossing the state border into the territory of the PPR (the 1st tank division along one axis the 9th tank division along two axes—see map [not printed]).

The issuing of this order from the General Staff of the USSR Armed Forces initiates the second phase of the tactical exercise. The CSPA in coordination with one division of the PPA (the 11th tank division) will operate in the Zagan exercise area, where both exercises will take place, under the control of the CSPA and in coordination with the Wrocaw Military Circle's operational group.

Following the realization of the tactical exercise the CSPA and PPA divisions will move to the allotted places on the territory of the PPR (see map [not printed]).
Following a short rest (1 day), the second exercise will begin—a command and control field exercise with communication equipment and partly-deployed forces.
[...]

More detailed preparations for the second exercise will likely take place between 8 and the 10 of December 1980.

In conclusion Marshal Ogarkov noted that at the present time the exercise is merely prepared. Its execution, including the timing of the exercise, will be decided by the political leadership. This allied action will probably be announced in accordance with the Helsinki Final Act, though with less than the 21 days notice specified.

Respected Comrade, I am also including at this time a draft information bulletin for the CPCz CC General Secretary and President of the "SSR and, provided that you have no objections to its content, I would like to ask you to sign it.