The dismembered Czechoslovak state was further disrupted on October 6, 1938, upon Eduard Benesšion, when at a rally in Zilina the Slovak People's Party proclaimed Slovakia's autonomy, flouting Benesš's appeal for state unity. Following the death of Father Andrej Hlinka, Father Josef Tiso succeeded to leadership of the Slovak National Party, which became "the only party in Slovakia by elimination of and union with other parties" on November 8, 1938.1
Eduard Benesš's resignation catapulted Gen. Jan Syrovyý temporarily into the Hrad as head of state. Syrovyý was replaced on November 30th by the National Assembly, which designated Emil Hácha, retired chief justice of the Supreme Administrative Court, as president and head of state. Rudolf Beran, the Agrarian rightist, succeeded as prime minister. This right-wing pair proved willing collaborators of the dominant power. All routine decisions in foreign affairs were referred to Berlin for approval. The new government forthwith annulled the Soviet alliance, banned the Communist Party, and curbed the trade unions and the press. It accepted the resignation of Ludvik Krejčí as chief of general staff on February 19th.
Notably cooperative with the new, pro-Nazi Czechoslovak government were business and financial circles, eager to take advantage of German trade and investment. On September 30, 1938, the day following the Munich accord, Jaroslav Preiss, chairman of the national Živnostenská Bank, accompanied by the new foreign minister,