50 years ago, the western powers were totally surprised by the actions, or were they not? Prague Spring - Wikipedia Just read in interesting article in a nation wide German newspaper. German NCO Alex Notz reports having been responsible to listen on his wireless as to what was happening in the East, but it was the night of the "deaf ears". On 20 August, he found out from listening to Radio Austria what went on in Praha. Did the Western powers play dumb? Stefan. .