World War II in Ukraine:

Carpatho-Ukraine 1938-39

Andrew Gregorovich

Carpatho-Ukraine 1938-39

Map of Carpatho-Ukraine 1938-1939 The fate of Carpatho-Ukraine before World War II revealed that Ukrainians could not expect any goodwill from Hitler's Germany. Carpatho-Ukraine was the official name of the country in Law No. 1 when it declared its independence. It was also called Ruthenia, Podkarpatska Rus, Carpatho-Rus, and Transcarpathia. The eastern part of Czechoslovakia had been inhabited for centuries by Ukrainians who had been deprived of education under previous Austro-Hungarian rule.

In 1928 the Czechoslovakian government established Podkarpatska Rus as a province and it became autonomous on October 11, 1938. Under President Augustin Voloshyn, Carpatho-Ukraine declared its independence on March 15, 1939. This was when Hitler took Prague, and he simultaneously approved the Hungarian takeover of Carpatho-Ukraine and the cities of Uzhhorod and Mukachevo. This "Republic for a Day" was quickly invaded by a powerful Hungarian Army which decimated the small under-equipped army defending Carpatho-Ukraine.

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Copyright © 1995 Andrew Gregorovich

Reprinted from FORUM Ukrainian Review No. 92, Spring 1995

since March 1st 1997