Final Word from Thursday, June 3, 2004

Hundreds of Czechs fought on the side of the Allies at Normandy, but some Czechoslovak citizens fought for the Germans. In "Saving Private Ryan," which is enjoying a revival as the 60th anniversary of D-Day approaches, a soldier in a German uniform pleads in Czech, "Don't shoot. I'm Czech. I didn't kill anyone." The Americans storming Omaha Beach don't understand him and shoot him anyway. Steven Spielberg's film is known for its realism, and some people say he intentionally put stuntman Martin Hub into this role to show that some Czechs were forced to fight for the Germans. Týden suggested that Hub's character was a Sudeten German trying to save his own life by acting like a Czech. Others say that Spielberg did an injustice to all Czechs by giving the false impression that Czech soldiers in general were German collaborators who deserved to be shot. invasion Czechoslovakia


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