M.R.Stefanik is a known unknown Slovak national hero. Communist wanted to erase name Stefanik from the historical memory of the Czech and Slovak nations. Immediately, after revolution in 1993 came opposite extreme. Streets, schools, airport, military academy, the highest state award was renamed in his honor. But in fact, many Slovaks know little about him.
He is celebrated as a general, politician and diplomat and one of the founders of Czechoslovakia. But some historians are portraying him as an adventurer, diplomatic intriguer and womanizer, with many passionate affairs. His premature death in crashing airplane stays unexplained and has been regularly reminded by many different conspiracy ...view middle of the document...
According the plan they should stay there for two weeks, but because of bad weather they had to stay three week, and created new record of a stay on Mont Blanc. As an astronomer he undergo a lot of expeditions and scientific journey. He visited Turkestan and Russia where he visited L. N. Tolstoj, He conducted meteorological observation Algeria, Tunis, observed Halley’s comet in Tahiti in Polynesia where he discover and rescued very interesting Gauguin’s woodcuts and took them to Paris.
After joined diplomatic and intelligence services to be able participate at observation of the sun in Brazil in 1912 he got the French nationality. In this time he was already well-known and successful scientist, he had written books on astronomy and he was several time honored for his achievements. As a diplomat and scientist he visited USA, Panama, Ecuador and Galapagos Island.
When world war began in1914 he worked on his diplomatic mission in Morocco. Triple Entente of the United Kingdom, France and the Russian Empire later on joined Italy, Japan and the United States fought against the Central Powers consist of Germany and Austria-Hungary together with the Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria. Stefanik as a French citizen joined French Air Force and enter the war. After necessary training he became pilot and went to the front. As a lieutenant he saved lives of his colleagues from a violent storm by using his knowledge for forecasting the weather. He was allowed to establish a military meteorological service at Franc Air Force.
In 1915 professor Tomas Masaryk, future president of the first Czechoslovak state introduced him an idea to establish common state of Czech and Slovak as an independent democratic state. Stefanik accepted this idea and immediately started to work on it. Together with his friends professor Tomas Masaryk and Edvard Benes founded the Czecho-Slovak National Council in Paris. In summer 1916 he went to Russia with idea to create a Czecho-Slovak unit based on volunteer from captured Czech and Slovak in Russian and lately Romania and Italy. He succeeded and in 1918 Stefanik was promoted to the rank “General de Brigade” commanding the Czecho-Slovak Force in Russia as a part of French military.
In 1918 the world war was finished, and Austrio-Hungarian Empire peacefully disintegrated. Independent Czechoslovak state was born on 24 October 1918. In this time Stefanik was still engaged in Russia reorganizing Czecho-Slovak Force and fighting against Bolsheviks.