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Diplomarbeit aus dem Jahr 2008 im Fachbereich Gesch. Europa - Deutschland - I. Weltkrieg, Weimarer Republik, Note: sehr gut, Universität Wien (Institut für Osteuropäische Geschichte), Veranstaltung: Diplomandenseminar, Sprache: Deutsch, Abstract: The Czechoslovak Legion in Russia is a not a prominent topic beside treatments in Czech and Slovak language. During World War I Czechoslovak volunteer forces appeared in France, Italy and most prominently, Russia, to fight alongside the Allies against their homeland, Austria-Hungary to gain national independence. This thesis focuses for the first time on the individual rank and file legionnaire. Seven different accounts of legionnaires, among them three diaries, which were published after the Velvet Revolution were evaluated. Their exploits are closely followed from the start of World War I in the Austro-Hungarian forces, through their capture and time as prisoners of war in Russia until their enlistment in the Czechoslovak Legion in Russia and their battles during World War I and the Russian Civil War. This is put into context with historic events of the period. During the communist rule works about the Legions were restricted, due to the sensitive nature of the Czechoslovak involvement in anti-Soviet actions. The perspective 'from the ranks' completes the usual perspective 'from above' and shows sides of conflict, which are often omitted: the daily life and mindset of common soldiers during the war and the effect of decisions and events, which are judged as important today, on the ground. The downside of using personal accounts as a source is the difficulty in dealing with the personal perspective and interpreting the statements. Most of them are biased against different groups in opposition to the legionnaires (Austro-Hungarian military; Germans and Magyars; Bolsheviks; to a lesser extent right-wing White Guards) and difficult to proof by cross-referencing other sources, including other personal accounts.