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On November 20, 1952, the trial of Rudolf Slansky, former general secretary of the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, and 13 colleagues got under way in Prague. The Moscow-directed purge of the group, whose members were accused of plotting a “Trotskyite-Titoist-Zionist” conspiracy at the behest of the United States, ended with the conviction of all 14. Eleven of them, including Slansky, the supposed...