The first step was the infamous Munich Agreement , signed on September 30, 1938 by Germany, Great Britain, France, and Italy, which turned over to Germany the western Czechoslovakian territory known as the Sudetenland. (Map) The excuse for the takeover was the complaints of the German speaking population living in the region that they were mistreated by the Czech majority. Great Britain and France viewed the treaty as a peaceful means to appease Hitler's appetite for territory.
With the Sudetenland annexation the Czech army, which had its main fortifications within the Sudeten area, was eliminated without a fight; its arms and ammunition were appropriated by the German army. Six months later Hitler pressured pro-German Slovakian fascists to declare Slovakia's independence; in actuality it became a puppet of the German Reich, and Czechoslovakia ceased to exist as an independent state. Two weeks later Hitler invaded the western Czech provinces of Moravia and Bohemia. Meeting no resistance, the area was declared to be a German Protectorate under the rule of the German appointed Reich Protector, Konstantin von Neurath.
German power in Czechoslovakia finally ended on May 11, 1945 when Russian soldiers liberated Prague. Only twenty thousand Czechoslovakian Jews survived.
THE WAR AGAINST THE JEWS 1933-1945, Lucy S. Dawidowicz, Holt, Rinehart and Winston: New York, 1975