Czechoslovak People’s Army Uniforms
The Czechoslovak People’s Army was the armed forces of the Czechoslovak State from 1951 to 1990. It was one of the four military areas, which made up the Armed Forces of Czechoslovakia. It was made up of a number of divisions, which included the Tank Corps, an Artillery Division, an Air Force, and a Ground Forces. In addition, it had an air defence element, called the Protivzdusna obrana statu (Protivzdusna obrana means ‘air defence’ in Czech), which was equipped with radar, direction-finding units, anti-aircraft missile units, and aircraft and helicopters.
Czechoslovak camouflage was initially designed to imitate German Sumpfmuster. Although the pattern was used for a wide variety of purposes, it was primarily used for shelter quarters. In the mid-1980s, experiments led to the production of two-color desert patterns. This design was used in a variety of applications, including light-weight reversible uniforms for snipers. Another pattern, referred to as the “leaf” pattern, was based on the US M1948 ERDL.
Another camouflage design, referred to as the “Jehlici” pattern, was introduced into the Czechoslovak People’s Army service in 1963. It was inspired by the Polish wz58 Deszczyk design, which has a light to dark grey tint to its underprint. However, the original jehlici pattern had a much stronger water-stain underprint.
By the mid-1980s, Czechoslovakia began to develop its own camouflage patterns. These patterns were loosely based on German Sumpfmuster designs. They also included designs that mimicked Italian M1929 telo mimetico fabrics. Some of the designs were even printed on equipment that had been moved by the Germans during World War II.
By the 1980s, the Czechoslovak Air Force had become equipped with supersonic jet fighters, attack helicopters, and electronic tracking equipment. It was one of the largest armed forces in the world. Until 1990, it was known as the Ceskoslovenska lidova armada. During that period, it was part of the Warsaw Pact and used a Slovak language. Eventually, the Ceskoslovenska lidova armed forces were dissolved and the Army of Czechoslovakia took over.
The Czechoslovak People’s Air Force was created in 1944. Initially, it was equipped with a fighter regiment. It was subsequently expanded into a mixed air division. After the war, the Czechoslovak Air Force received jet fighters. As it became more advanced, it began participating in the war in Eastern Europe, fighting the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists, the Slovak National Uprising, and the Organization of the Baltic States.
The Czechoslovak Army has since become a force of 300,000 people, and it has increased its military equipment in the years following the dissolution of the Czechoslovak state. It has become an important military institution in helping the national economy. There are currently 16 infantry divisions in the Czechoslovak Armed Forces. Several models of uniforms have been developed, from plain khaki to a rain pattern.
In the late 1940s, Czechoslovakia received a loan of almost 44 million rubles from the Soviet Union. This loan was used to buy aircraft, military equipment, and radars.