Teacher, administrator, political leader. Zacharka was born into
a poor peasant family in the village of Dabrasielcy near the town of Varikavysk
on April 1. 1877. when he was 16 years old, he became an orphan and hard
work became his way of life as he brought up his two brothers and a sister.
But determination paid off and Vasil Zacharka passed the test enabling
him to become a parochial school teacher. Zacharka was drafted in
1898 and remained in the military service until after the 1917 Revolution.
During his years of service he kept in contact with the Belarusian Socialist
Hramada Zacharka's advancement in the service was outstanding and during
the war he became second in command in army supplies for the North-westem
front. Zacharka enjoyed even more advancement during the war years.
After the February Re'volution, he became the moving force in organizing
Belarusian soldiers on Belarusian territory. Zacharka's wide connections
with the military paid off handsomely and he was able to attract numerous
officers from the tsarist army into the Belarusian movement. At the
conference of Belarusian soldiers, held in Miensk in November, 1917, Vasil
Zacharka was elected secretary of the Belarusian Military Council . As
part of his military contingent, Zacharka participated in the All-Byelorussian
Congress. At the Congress Zacharka was elected to the Executive Council
of the Congress. The Bolsheviks arrested and imprisoned Zacharka,
but he escaped. While in hiding, Zacharka organized the Belarusian
military forces and prepared a coup to overthrow the Bolsheviks.
The general situation on the front changed-however, and the Belarusians
took over power in Miensk on February l9-20, 1918.
Zacharka became a member of the Committee which drafted the Constituent
Charters and from this time on he carried out numerous functions in the
Government of the Belarusian Democratic Republic. Vasil Zacharka
chaired the Belarusian delegation to Moscow to negotiate with the Bolsheviks
for recognition of the Belarusian Democratic Republic in July of
1920. He also negotiated with the Poles and the Lithuanians. When
the Government of the Belarusian Democratic Republic went westward,
Zacharka left Belarus and settled in Prague. He continued to be active
in the affairs of the Belarusian Democratic Republic in Western Europe.
When Piotra Krecheuski died in 1928, Vasil Zacharka became Chairman of
the Council of the Belarusian Democratic Republic. During World
War II the Germans contacted Zacharka seeking the collaboration of the
Belarusian Democratic Republic, but Vasil Zacharka declined any collaboration
with them. Zacharka was an influential political columnist and contributed
numerous important articles to various Belarusian and non-Belarusian newspapers
and journals. Vasil Zacharka died in Prague on March 14, 1943.
A Belarus Miscellany home page
Belarusian Writers Abroad
This page was designed by Artem
Peplov. Content of these pages was developed and is maintained by Liavon