Czech Police in the western city of Plzeň are investigating anti-US graffiti on a war memorial to American soldiers on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on New York’s World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon outside of Washington, D.C.
A paper airplane with the message “Bin Laden Airlines” was stuck to the memorial to American soldiers who liberated the city at the end of the Second World War together with stickers saying “USA global terrorist,” the web-site of the Czech daily paper Právo reported on Monday.
Al-Qaeda head Osama Bin Laden claimed responsibility for the airline attacks on the Twin Towers, the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, and a failed attempt to crash another plane into Washington, D.C. on Sept. 11, 2001.
Plzeň was the biggest Czech city liberated by US troops at the end of the Second World War.
The Plzeň city council official responsible said that town police were investigating the incident. “Flowers and nothing else belong at the American memorial,” said Civic Democrat (ODS) council member Robert Houdek, who added that he was shocked that protection of the monument had not been stepped up for the anniversary.
Plzeň’s place in US history
Plzeň, best known for its Pilsner beer, was the biggest Czech city liberated by US troops at the end of the Second World War. General George Smith Patton’s third army reached the city at the start of May but did not proceed much beyond it due to an agreement between US and Russian leaders where their troops would stop at the end of the war. Patton had been keen to push on and liberate the capital, Prague, which was still in German hands, but was forbidden from doing so.
The US liberation of Plzeň was later covered up by the Czechoslovak communist regime which came to power in February 1948, with history even being re-written to give the impression that Soviet troops freed the city. The memorial to the US liberation was erected after the communist regime collapsed in 1989.