NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN (ALMOST)
5th February, 1968 : After a bitter behind-the-scenes struggle, the Czechoslovak Communist Party has produced a new leader with a reputation as a reformer and – in east European terms – a liberal. Alexander Dubček, aged 46, a Communist official since the wartime years underground, ousted the pro-Moscow stalwart, Antonín Novotný, to beome the first Slovak to lead the party. The power shift will open the way for long-delayed economic reforms. Dubček is expected to ease heavy-handed Party controls on the press and encourage more candour in political discussions.