These words were feared by all German women in 1945. It was an indication that something unpleasant was coming their way.

These words were uttered by wild looking tough battle-hardened Red Army soldiers who had learnt that smattering of German.

The mass gang rape of German Fraus and Fraulein when the country lost the war remains one of the most under-reported piece of history.

Soviet soldiers German women mass rape
Soviet soldiers burst into a room filled with young German girls
Perhaps it was wilfully buried by the British and American media and academia because most of the brutal rapes were committed by their WW2 ally, Soviet Russia. Both countries had gone to bed with Uncle Joe (Stalin), to save the inevitable loss of lives if Russia had not done the dirty work and done most of the fighting in subduing Nazi Germany.

So while vengeful Soviet soldiers raped hapless German women, the honorable American and British soldiers looked the other way. 

Worse still, they too raped with gusto. These facts are recently coming to light and was reported by a prominent German periodical Der Spiegel. Yes, even American and British soldiers, the so-called the "best generation of all times" violated German women.

Only that the powerful English language media dominated by these two countries just looked the other way.

The horrific plight of German women has started to be noticed in the English language media only in the last one decade owing to works by British historians like Antony Beevor.

We guess in today's internet world with online translations, people were beginning to read what the Germans had been saying all along.... That all Allied soldiers had raped and sexually abused German women at the end of the Second World War and the years following that.

Russian soldiers rape german frau
A Russian soldier forces himself on a hapless German woman

These mass rapes against German women were one of the greatest crimes against women throughout history. Rapists were mainly Red Army soldiers, many of them - non-white soldiers from the Asian republics of the Soviet Union.. However, unfortunately, it must be said that many rapists, were American soldiers. They certainly behaved like animals, but they had official sanction. The European women of those nations that had been allies of Nazi Germany were targeted too.

German historian Miriam Gebhardt writes about a German man saying, "My niece was raped by fourteen Russian officers in the next room. My wife was towed by a Russian in the barn and also raped. After being locked up in a stable and raped the next morning five clock at gunpoint again. When the column was gone, we found my wife under a pile of straw, where they had fled in fear. "

As a former slogan sums up: "The Americans took six years to fight down the German soldiers to have a German woman, it took a day and a table of chocolate."

The terrible deeds played out not only in the areas where Red Army soldiers often roamed. Also in the UK, the French and the American zone of occupation, there was mass rape, sometimes for several days.

Berlin women, it seems, were short of food, but well provided with poison.There were instances of mass-suicide by poison. The actor Paul Bildt and some twenty others dispatched themselves thus, only he woke again and lived for another dozen years. His daughter was among the dead. Attesting once more to the incidence of suicide among the nobles, especially those who lived on isolated estates in the Mark Brandenburg, the writer cites a number of cases showing how far the old families would go to protect the dignity of their daughters: death was preferable to dishonour. 
After The Reich by Giles Macdonogh P 99

Red army soldier harasses German woman bicycle

The film Eine Frau in Berlin "A woman in Berlin ", based on the bestselling book of the same name conjures up images of one of the most brutal pages from the past: sexual violence against German women at the end of World War II.

Insulting the honor of German women. Ordinary women who had nothing to do with the Nazi government. Was it fair?And the Americans looked away.

Russian soldiers molests german woman 1945

Millions of women victims raped by Russian soldiers during the last months of World War II. Anthony Beevor's book "Berlin -- The Downfall 1945" documents rape by Russian soldiers. "Beevor's conclusions are that in response to the vast scale of casualties inflicted on them by the Germans the Soviets responded in kind, and that included rape on a vast scale. It started as soon as the Red Army entered East Prussia and Silesia in 1944, and in many towns and villages every female aged from 10 to 80 was raped." The author "was 'shaken to the core' to discover that even their own Russian and Polish women and girls liberated from German concentration camps were also violated." Until recent years, East German women from the World War II era referred to the Red Army war memorial in Berlin as "the Tomb of the Unknown Rapist."

German women sexually exploited

German girls flee from Russian soldiers

German women vulnerable sexual exploitation ww2 1945



Just inside the east Prussian border with Soviet occupied Lithuania, the town of Nemmersdorf was the first to fall (temporarily) into the hands of the victorious Soviet Army.
Overrun by General Gatlitsky's 11th Guards Army, his soldiers, crazy with bloodlust, set about raping, looting and killing with such ferocity that eventually discipline had to be restored to force the soldiers back to fighting the war. From buildings, Russian signs were hung which read 'Soldiers! Majdanek does not forgive. Take revenge without mercy!'. When the Soviet 4th Army took over the town five days later, hardly a single inhabitant remained alive. Women were found nailed to barn doors after being stripped naked and gang raped, their bodies then used for bayonet practice. Many women, and girls as young as eight years old, were raped so often and brutally that they died from this abuse alone. Children were shot indiscriminately and all those trying to flee were crushed to death under the treads of the Soviet tanks. Forty French prisoners-of-war were shot on the spot as spies after welcoming the Red Army as liberators. Seventy one women and one man were found in houses, all dead. All the women, including girls aged from eight to twelve, had been raped.

In other East Prussian villages within the triangle Gumbinnen-Goldap-Ebenrode, the same scenes were witnessed, old men and boys being castrated and their eyes gouged out before being killed or burned alive. In nearby Metgethen, a suburb of Königsberg, recaptured by the German 5th Panzer Division, around 60 women were found in a demented state in a large villa. They had been raped on average 60 to 70 times a day. In nearly every home, the bodies of women and children were found raped and murdered. The bodies of two young women were found, their legs had been tied one limb each between two trucks, and then torn apart when the trucks were driven away in opposite directions. At Metgethen railway station, a refugee train from Konigsberg, consisting of seven passenger coaches, was found and in each compartment seven to nine bestially mutilated bodies were discovered. To the Russians, refugee trains were ideal sources of women and booty. In the town of Niesse in Silesia, 182 Catholic nuns were raped and debauched daily by the Russians. In the town of Demmin in Mecklenburg, German troops destroyed the bridge over the river Peene to slow down the advance of the Red Army. Nevertheless, the town was handed over to the Soviets without much of resistance and soon after around 800 of its citizens committed suicide by drowning in the Peene or by taking poison in fear of rape or murder by the Soviet troops.

In a house in another town, children were found sitting around a dinner table, plates of potato pancakes in front of them. All were dead, their tongues nailed to the table. Soviet officers reported back to Moscow that mass poisoning from captured alcohol, including dangerous chemicals found in laboratories, is damaging the fighting capacity of the Soviet Army. All too often, soldiers who had drunk too much and were unable to perform the sex act, used the bottle to mutilate their victims obscenely. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, an ex-captain in the Soviet Army, recalls, "All of us knew very well that if girls were German they could be raped and then shot. This was almost a combat distinction". (Details of these, and other atrocities, are contained in the Eastern Documentation Section of the German Federal Archives in Berlin)

The orgy of rape by Soviet troops was far greater than at first believed. Even Russian women and young girls, newly liberated from German concentration camps in Poland and in Germany, were brutally violated. The thousands of Russian women taken to Germany for forced labour also fell victims to the rapists. 'I waited for the Red Army for days and nights. I waited for my liberation, but now our soldiers treat us far worse than the Germans did' said one Maria Shapoval,'They do terrible things to us'.

REVENGE AT NEUSTETTIN (February 16-18, 1945)

On the 16th of February, soldiers of the First White Russian Army occupied the town of Neustettin just inside the German border with Poland. In the town was the 'Wilmsee' camp of the German R.A.D. (Reich Women's Labour Service). In the huts were some 500 uniformed girls of the RAD. They were taken to the foreign workers barracks at the local iron foundry. All were considered by the Russians to be members of an illegal army. 

In an office set up by the Russian commissar groups of girls were brought in and ordered to undress. Two men (believed to be Poles) then entered the room and grabbing one of the girls bent her backwards over the edge of a table and then proceeded to cut off her breasts before the eyes of the others. Her screams were accompanied by cheers and howls of approval from the Russians. The same fate awaited all the others each procedure becoming ever more cruel. More girls were brought in continually and out in the courtyard hundreds were clubbed to death, only the prettiest being led to the commissars office for torture, mutilation and death. A few days later when a German reserve tank unit from Cottbus temporarily recaptured the town they were utterly devastated by what they saw. 

Survivors told of what they had seen. Mothers had to witness their ten and twelve year old daughters being raped by up to twenty soldiers, the daughters in turn witnessing their mothers being raped, even their grandmothers. In most houses in the town nearly every room contained naked and dead women with the Swastika symbol crudely carved on their abdomens. No mercy was shown to the women and girls. It is estimated that about 2,000 girls that had been in the RAD and BDM (League of German Girls) camps in and around the town were raped and murdered in the first few days of the Soviet occupation.  

American and British soldiers too...

Not all rapists wore a red star. John Dos Passos in "Life" on January 7, 1946, stated that "lust, whiskey and plunder - was a reward for the soldier." One soldier wrote in Time magazine (Time) on November 12, 1945: "A lot of normal American families would be horrified if they knew how utterly insensitively our boys "behaved here." An army sergeant wrote: "And our army and British army ... had their share of looting and rape ... Although these crimes are not typical for our troops, but their percentage is high enough to give our army of sinister reputation, so that we too can be called an army of tyrants."

german women raped by black american GI ww2 1945 lily book

Sociologist and criminologist Professor Bob Lilly makes unprecedented use of military records and trial transcripts to throw light on one of the overlooked consequences of the US Army's presence in Western Europe between 1942 and 1945: the rape of an estimated 14,000 civilian women in the United Kingdom, France and Germany. 

german women berlin 1945 red army tanks


Between the months of April and May, the German capital Berlin saw more than 100,000 rape cases according to hospital reports, while East Prussia, Pomerania and Silesia saw more than 1.4 million rape cases.


Between the months of January and August of 1945, Germany saw the largest incident of mass rape known in history, where an estimated two million German women were raped by the Soviet Red Army soldiers, as written by Walter Zapotoczny Jr. in his book, ‘Beyond Duty: The Reason Some Soldiers Commit Atrocities’.


Hospital reports also stated that abortion operations were being carried out daily across all German hospitals.

Natalya Gesse, who was a Soviet war correspondent at the time, said that the Soviets didn’t care about the ages of their victims. “The Russian soldiers were raping every German female from eight to eighty. It was an army of rapists,” she said.


This caused the deaths of no less than 200,000 girls and women due to the spread of diseases, especially that many eyewitnesses recounted victims being raped as much as 70 times in that period.


Red Army soldiers would mass rape German women as a kind of revenge against their enemy: The German army. They felt that it was their earned right to do so as the German army had ‘violated’ their motherland by invading it. In addition to not being in contact with women for long periods causing their animal instinct to be heightened.


In his book, Zapotoczny said that even female Russian soldiers did not disapprove of the rapes, some finding it amusing.

“Our fellows were so sex-starved,” a Soviet major told a British journalist at the time, “that they often raped old women of sixty, seventy or even eighty - much to these grandmothers’ surprise, if not downright delight.”


In his book, Zapotoczny said that even female Russian soldiers did not disapprove of the rapes, some finding it amusing.


In 1948, rape cases decreased vastly after Soviet troops were ordered back to their camps in Russia and left residential areas in Germany.






Bandits in Uniform' The Dark Side of GIs in Liberated France

US soldiers who fought in World War II have commonly been depicted as honorable citizen warriors from the "Greatest Generation." But a new book uncovers the dark side of some GIs in liberated France, where robbing, raping and whoring were rife.

May 29, 2013  

The liberators made a lot of noise and drank too much. They raced around in their jeeps, fought in the streets and stole. But the worst thing was their obsession with French women. They wanted sex -- some for free, some for money and some by force.


After four years of German occupation, the French greeted the US soldiers landing in Normandy on June 6, 1944 as liberators. The entire country was delirious with joy. But after only a few months, a shadow was cast over the new masters' image among the French.


By the late summer of 1944, large numbers of women in Normandy were complaining about rapes by US soldiers. Fear spread among the population, as did a bitter joke: "Our men had to disguise themselves under the Germans. But when the Americans came, we had to hide the women."


With the landing on Omaha Beach, "a veritable tsunami of male lust" washed over France, writes Mary Louise Roberts, a history professor at the University of Wisconsin, in her new book "What Soldiers Do: Sex and the American GI in World War II France." In it, Roberts scrapes away at the idealized picture of war heroes. Although soldiers have had a reputation for committing rape in many wars, American GIs have been largely excluded from this stereotype. Historical research has paid very little attention to this dark side of the liberation of Europe, which was long treated as a taboo subject in both the United States and France.


American propaganda did not sell the war to soldiers as a struggle for freedom, writes Roberts, but as a "sexual adventure." France was "a tremendous brothel," the magazine Life fantasized at the time, "inhabited by 40,000,000 hedonists who spend all their time eating, drinking (and) making love." The Stars and Stripes, the official newspaper of the US armed forces, taught soldiers German phrases like: "Waffen niederlegen!" ("Throw down your arms!"). But the French phrases it recommended to soldiers were different: "You have charming eyes," "I am not married" and "Are your parents at home?"


After their victory, the soldiers felt it was time for a reward. And when they enjoyed themselves with French women, they were not only validating their own masculinity, but also, in a metaphorical sense, the new status of the United States as a superpower, writes Roberts. The liberation of France was sold to the American public as a love affair between US soldiers and grateful French women.


On the other hand, following their defeat by the Germans, many French perceived the Americans' uninhibited activities in their own country as yet another humiliation. Although the French were officially among the victorious powers, the Americans were now in charge.


'Scenes Contrary to Decency'


The subject of sex played a central role in the relationship between the French and their liberators. Prostitution was the source of constant strife between US military officials and local authorities.


Some of the most dramatic reports came from the port city of Le Havre, which was overrun by soldiers headed home in the summer of 1945. In a letter to a Colonel Weed, the US regional commander, then Mayor Pierre Voisin complained that his citizens couldn't even go for a walk in the park or visit the cemetery without encountering GIs having sex in public with prostitutes.


"Scenes contrary to decency" were unfolding in his city day and night, Voisin wrote. It was "not only scandalous but intolerable" that "youthful eyes are exposed to such public spectacles." The mayor suggested that the Americans set up a brothel outside the city so that the sexual activity would be discrete and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases could be combated by medical personnel.


But the Americans could not operate brothels because they feared that stories about the soldiers' promiscuity would then make their way back to their wives at home. Besides, writes Roberts, many American military officials did not take the complaints seriously owing to their belief that it was normal for the French to have sex in public.


But the citizens of Le Havre wrote letters of protest to their mayor, and not just regarding prostitution. We are "attacked, robbed, run over both on the street and in our houses," wrote one citizen in October 1945. "This is a regime of terror, imposed by bandits in uniform."


'The Swagger of Conquerors'


There were similar accounts from all over the country, with police reports listing holdups, theft and rapes. In Brittany, drunk soldiers destroyed bars when they ran out of cognac. Sexual assaults were commonplace in Marseilles. In Rouen, a soldier forced his way into a house, held up his weapon and demanded sex.


The military authorities generally took the complaints about rape seriously. However, the soldiers who were convicted were almost exclusively African-American, some of them apparently on the basis of false accusations, because racism was also deeply entrenched in French society.


A café owner from Le Havre expressed the deep French disillusionment over the Americans' behavior when he said: "We expected friends who would not make us ashamed of our defeat. Instead, there came incomprehension, arrogance, incredibly bad manners and the swagger of conquerors."


Translated from the German by Christopher Sultan 





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The Dark Side of Liberation

  • The soldiers who landed in Normandy on D-Day were greeted as liberators, but by the time American G.I.’s were headed back home in late 1945, many French citizens viewed them in a very different light.


    In the port city of Le Havre, the mayor was bombarded with letters from angry residents complaining about drunkenness, jeep accidents, sexual assault — “a regime of terror,” as one put it, “imposed by bandits in uniform.”


    This isn’t the “greatest generation” as it has come to be depicted in popular histories. But in “What Soldiers Do: Sex and the American G.I. in World War II France,” the historian Mary Louise Roberts draws on French archives, American military records, wartime propaganda and other sources to advance a provocative argument: The liberation of France was “sold” to soldiers not as a battle for freedom but as an erotic adventure among oversexed Frenchwomen, stirring up a “tsunami of male lust” that a battered and mistrustful population often saw as a second assault on its sovereignty and dignity.


    “I could not believe what I was reading,” Ms. Roberts, a professor of French history at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, recalled of the moment she came across the citizen complaints in an obscure archive in Le Havre. “I took out my little camera and began photographing the pages. I did not go to the bathroom for eight hours.”


    “What Soldiers Do,” to be officially published next month by the University of Chicago Press, arrives just as sexual misbehavior inside the military is high on the national agenda, thanks to a recent Pentagon report estimating that some 26,000 service members had been sexually assaulted in 2012, more than a one-third increase since 2010.


    While Ms. Roberts’s arguments may be a hard sell to readers used to more purely heroic narratives, her book is winning praise from some scholarly colleagues.“Our culture has embalmed World War II as ‘the good war,’ and we don’t revisit the corpse very often,” said David M. Kennedy, a historian at Stanford University and the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Freedom From Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945.”


    “What Soldiers Do,” to be officially published next month by the University of Chicago Press, arrives just as sexual misbehavior inside the military is high on the national agenda, thanks to a recent Pentagon report estimating that some 26,000 service members had been sexually assaulted in 2012, more than a one-third increase since 2010.


    While Ms. Roberts’s arguments may be a hard sell to readers used to more purely heroic narratives, her book is winning praise from some scholarly colleagues.“Our culture has embalmed World War II as ‘the good war,’ and we don’t revisit the corpse very often,” said David M. Kennedy, a historian at Stanford University and the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book “Freedom From Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945.”


    Ms. Roberts, whose parents met in 1944 when her father was training as a naval officer, emphasizes that American soldiers’ heroism and sacrifice were very real, and inspired genuine gratitude. But French sources, she argues, also reveal deep ambivalence on the part of the liberated.


    “Struggles between American and French officials over sex,” she writes, “rekindled the unresolved question of who exactly was in charge.”


    Sex was certainly on the liberators’ minds. The book cites military propaganda and press accounts depicting France as “a tremendous brothel inhabited by 40 million hedonists,” as Life magazine put it. (Sample sentences from a French phrase guide in the newspaper Stars and Stripes: “You are very pretty” and “Are your parents at home?”)


    On the ground, however, the grateful kisses captured by photojournalists gave way to something less picturesque. In the National Archives in College Park, Md., Ms. Roberts found evidence — including one blurry, curling snapshot — supporting long-circulating colorful anecdotes about the Blue and Gray Corral, a brothel set up near the village of St. Renan in September 1944 by Maj. Gen. Charles H. Gerhardt, commander of the infantry division that landed at Omaha Beach, partly to counter a wave of rape accusations against G.I.’s. (It was shut down after a mere five hours.)


    In France, Ms. Roberts also found a desperate letter from the mayor of Le Havre in August 1945 urging American commanders to set up brothels outside the city, to halt the “scenes contrary to decency” that overran the streets, day and night. They refused, partly, Ms. Roberts argues, out of concern that condoning prostitution would look bad to “American mothers and sweethearts,” as one soldier put it.


    Keeping G.I. sex hidden from the home front, she writes, ensured that it would be on full public view in France: a “two-sided attitude,” she said, that is reflected in the current military sexual abuse crisis.


    Ms. Roberts is not the first scholar to bring the sexual side of World War II into clearer view. The 1990s brought a surge of scholarship on the Soviet Army’s mass rapes on the Eastern front, fed partly by the international campaign to have rape recognized as a war crime after the conflict in the former Yugoslavia. At the same time, gender historians began taking a closer look at “fraternization” by American soldiers, with particular attention to what women thought they were getting out of the bargain.


    “The standard story had been that the Soviets were the rapists, the Americans were the fraternizers, and the British were the gentlemen,” said Atina Grossmann, the author of “Jews, Germans and Allies: Close Encounters in Occupied Germany.


    An American soldier and a Frenchwoman kissing in a picture that raised eyebrows after appearing in Life magazine in 1944.CreditRalph Morse/Time Life Pictures-Getty Images

    Work that looked at sexual assaults by American soldiers, even on a small scale, remained controversial. J. Robert Lilly’s “Taken by Force,” a groundbreaking study of rapes of French, German and British civilian women by G.I.’s, based on courts-martial records Mr. Lilly uncovered, drew a strong response when it was published in France in 2003. But the book, which emphasized the grossly disproportionate prosecution of black soldiers, struggled to find an American publisher amid tensions between the United States and Europe over Iraq.


    “American presses wouldn’t touch the subject with a 10-foot barge pole,” said Mr. Lilly, a sociology professor at Northern Kentucky University. (Palgrave Macmillan published his book in the United States in 2007.)


    Today the seamier side of liberation is not entirely absent from popular accounts. “The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945,” the final volume of Rick Atkinson’s best-selling trilogy about the war, published this month, includes a brief discussion of the Army’s campaign against venereal disease (“Don’t forget the Krauts were fooling around France a long time before we got here,” an Army publication warned soldiers in December 1944), as well as a reference to Mr. Lilly’s work.


    The few scholars who have looked more closely at rape by G.I.’s have attributed its racially skewed prosecution to “the Jim Crow army,” which was happy to depict rape as a problem only among the noncombat support units to which black soldiers were mostly limited.


    “White soldiers got a pass because of their combat status,” said William I. Hitchcock, author of “The Bitter Road to Freedom” (2008), a history of the liberation of Western Europe from the perspective of often traumatized local civilians. “The Army wasn’t interested in prosecuting a battle-scarred sergeant.”


    Ms. Roberts, who closely studied transcripts of 15 courts-martial in Northern France, certainly sees American racism at work. “Let’s Look at Rape!,” a 1944 Army pamphlet credited to “a Negro Chaplain,” contained a prominent illustration of a noose — a clear suggestion that the Army was going to “protect the color line,” she writes. (Among the soldiers hanged for rape and murder was Louis Till, the father of Emmett Till.)


    But her analysis is hardly more flattering to the French, whose often shaky accusations, as she sees them, reflected their own need to project the humiliations of occupation onto a racial “other.” (“We have no more soldiers here, just a few Negroes who terrorize the neighborhood,” one civilian remarked in April 1945.)


    Ms. Roberts said the book has attracted strong interest from French publishers, where willingness to explore the darker side of liberation jostles with a lingering fear of seeming ungrateful.







    Mass Starvation of Germans, 1945-1950 (Eisenhower's Death Camps)


    [back] Genocide   Food as a Weapon of War  Allied War Crimes[More than nine million Germans died as a result of deliberate Allied starvation and expulsion policies after the Second World War, including 1.5-2 million German prisoners, which is the alleged number that died in Auschwitz.  Architect--Morgenthau.]


    See: Allied War Crimes US based Concentration Camps for Germans Concentration Camp (USA)  Concentration Camps (Boer War)  Concentration Camps (Holocaust) 

    See: Eisenhower  Churchill


    [2013] Rhine meadow camps in summer 1945 (part 1)


    [2012 June] The European Atrocity You Never Heard About An estimated 500,000 people died in the course of the organized expulsions; survivors were left in Allied-occupied Germany to fend for themselves.


    Allied War Crimes 1941-1950 by Rixon Stewart 


    [2008] Eisenhower's Holocaust - His Slaughter Of 1.7 Million Germans  ..

    German POWs had to dig holes for shelter

    [1989] Eisenhower's Death Camps.  The Last Dirty Secret of World War Two by James Bacque


    War Crimes: USA by Lt. Col. Gordon "Jack" Mohr, AUS Ret.


    In 'Eisenhower痴 Death Camps': A U.S. Prison Guard Remembers


    New Book Details Mass Killings and Brutal Mistreatment of Germans at the End of World War Two 


    A Review of James Bacque's "Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians Under Allied Occupation 1944-1950" by Eric Blair 



    Eisenhower Telegram to the War Department, 18 October 1945


    [2000] HOW ALLIES TREATED GERMAN POWs by Michael Walsh


    In 'Eisenhower痴 Death Camps': A U.S. Prison Guard Remembers



    [2014 Book, Film] Hellstorm: The Death of Nazi Germany, 1944-1947 by Thomas Goodrich


    [2007] After the Reich: The Brutal History of Allied Occupation by Giles MacDonogh
    REVIEW  Review


    [2003] Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians Under Allied Occupation 1944-1950 by James Bacque  More than nine million Germans died as a result of deliberate Allied starvation and expulsion policies after the Second World War


    [1989] Other Losses by James Bacque


    [1988] Nemesis at Potsdam: The Expulsion of the Germans from the East by Alfred M. de Zayas



    Mass Starvation of Germans, 1945-1950


    See: Eisenhower  Holocaust revisionism


      According to Bacque between 1941 and 1950 around one and a half to two million German prisoners of war died, whilst a further five million seven hundred thousand German civilians died between 1946 and 1950, largely, Bacque maintains, as a result of Allied policy. In all Bacques estimates that between nine and half and fourteen million ethnic Germans, German prisoners of war and civilians were to die in these iniquities. Part of the blame for this can be laid at the feet of Josef Stalin who, through his propaganda minister, Ilya Ehrenburg, actually encouraged the rape and degradation of the German civilian population. Allied War Crimes 1941-1950 by Rixon Stewart


      ..."it is hard to escape the conclusion that Dwight Eisenhower was a war criminal of epic proportions. His (DEF) policy killed more Germans in peace than were killed in the European Theater." [2008] Eisenhower's Holocaust - His Slaughter Of 1.7 Million Germans


      His best estimate is that some three million Germans, military and civilians, died unnecessarily after the official end of hostilities. A million of these were men who were being held as prisoners of war, most of whom died in Soviet captivity. (Of the 90,000 Germans who surrendered at Stalingrad, for example, only 5,000 ever returned to their homeland.)  Less well known is the story of the many thousands of German prisoners who died in American and British captivity, most infamously in horrid holding camps along the Rhine river, with no shelter and very little food. Others, more fortunate, toiled as slave labor in Allied countries, often for years. 

        Most of the two million German civilians who perished after the end of the war were women, children and elderly -- victims of disease, cold, hunger, suicide, and mass murder.
        Apart from the wide-scale rape of millions of German girls and woman in the Soviet occupation zones, perhaps the most shocking outrage recorded by MacDonogh is the slaughter of a quarter of a million Sudeten Germans by their vengeful Czech compatriots.New Book Details Mass Killings and Brutal Mistreatment of Germans at the End of World War Two


        According to Bacque, given the extraordinarily harsh conditions imposed upon them by the Allies (i.e., the British, French, Soviets, and Americans), at least 9.3 million and possibly as many as 13.7 million Germans, had, by 1950, needlessly died as a result.A Review of James Bacque's "Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians Under Allied Occupation 1944-1950" by Eric Blair


    [REVIEW] After the Reich: The Brutal History of Allied Occupation by Giles MacDonogh
    His best estimate is that some three million Germans, military and civilians, died unnecessarily after the official end of hostilities.....Most of the two million German civilians who perished after the end of the war were women, children and elderly -- victims of disease, cold, hunger, suicide, and mass murder.....perhaps the most shocking outrage recorded by MacDonogh is the slaughter of a quarter of a million Sudeten Germans by their vengeful Czech compatriots......We are ceaselessly reminded of the Third Reich痴 wartime concentration camps. But few Americans are aware that such infamous camps as Dachau, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen and Auschwitz stayed in business after the end of the war, only now packed with German captives, many of whom perished miserably.




    Nazi Germany Had Unequalled Quality

    of Life, US and British Soldiers Looted it Out of Existence

    Only now can the story break through the media’s censorship of real history:


    “The sacking of Germany after her unconditional surrender will go down in history as one of the most monstrous acts of modern times.  Its excess beggar’s description and its magnitude defy condemnation.” ~ Ralph F. Keeling, Gruesome Harvest; 1947. The Institute of American Economics. 


    Keeling didn’t mince his words:


    “When we arrived the Germans were strongly anti-Communist; they have since started fleeing our zone and entering the Russian where they are welcomed into the Communist Party and even into the Red Army, in whose ranks they may someday be able to get their revenge on us.”



    Elegance and Fashion in the Reich was world-class


    Mainstream media air-brushes the scale of Allied looting of defeated Germany. Upon its conquest, Germany’s wealth was first to be liberated. Every house and every apartment was entered, searched, and stripped of everything valuable and moveable, jewellery, silverware, and works of art, clothing, household appliances, and money.



    Elegance and Class in Hitler’s Reich equalled that of Paris


    Stores, shops and warehouses were ransacked. Farms were deprived of their farm animals, machinery, seed stocks, fodder, wine, food stocks. Telephones were removed, telegraph equipment dismantled. Cars, trucks, even fire engines were seized. The Americans, Russian and British troops found themselves knee-deep in the remnants of a standard of living that most could only dream about.



    Innovation and engineering elegance in Hitler’s Germany was world class.


    William H. G. Stoneman Foreign Correspondent, Chicago Daily News May, 1945:


    “Millions of dollars’ worth of rare things varying from intricate Zeiss lenses to butter and cheese and costly automobiles are being destroyed because the Army has not organized a system of recovery of valuable enemy material.” The term ‘recovery’ is a euphemism for looting.



    Reich achievements were never matched for decades afterwards


    He went on to describe, scattered everywhere, millions of dollars’ worth of plundered goods.  The troops simply could not carry everything that they could steal so they vandalized it and left it to rot.  It is estimated that the value of looted properties by the allied armies ran into hundreds of millions of dollars and ‘deprived the German civilian population the comforts and necessities so sorely needed.”



    Standards of living in Hitler’s Germany were incomparable elsewhere


    In a displaying of breathtaking chutzpah, the Soviets complained that,

    “American officials have stolen equipment from plants in a zone earmarked for shipment to Russia and sold it to foreign countries at a profit.”




    Chicago Sunday Tribune, which back then was a great deal more honest than media today, was damning:

    “No effective steps were taken to discourage looting by the invading armies during the war.  It was tolerated under such euphemism as ‘souvenir collecting.”


    The quality of life in the Reich was a world best


    Over 200 German art masterpieces were looted by the American armed forces and are still held under lock and key in the United States. The British were equally piratical:

    “The British seem to be everywhere when there is any scientific or industrial information to be gleaned.”



    Germans during the Reich lived an enviable life


    Hand-in-hand with the plundering of Germany was the removal its means to trade: The production of shipbuilding, manufacture and operation of aircraft, ball and taper roller bearings, all heavy machine tools, heavy materials, aluminium, magnesium, beryllium, vanadium, radioactive materials, hydrogen peroxide, synthetic oils, gasoline, ammonia, ceased.



    Ralph F. Keeling:

    “German science has been destroyed, and with it German ability to compete commercially with the war victors.”


    He goes on to say:

    “We even managed to kidnap a large number from the western Russian zone when we retired to let the Russians take over. As a consequence, we now have at our disposal hundreds of German scientists who no doubt constitute one of our most profitable acquisitions taken from the fallen Reich.


    Assistant Secretary of State, William L. Clayton, on June 1945 was equally candid: “We intend to secure the full disclosure of all existing German technology and invention for the benefit of the United Nations (sic).”



    Life in the Reich was superlative


    America’s pre-war isolationist policies came to an end. By 1945 Winston Churchill, the unelected premier of a bankrupt Britain had placed much of the British Empire’s assets with Wall Street’s pawnbrokers. Bloated on war plunder a now expansionist United States was to build on its ill-gotten gains for the next 75 years.



    Reich lifestyle was unmatched


    Nick Cook, Aerospace Consultant for Jane’s Defence Weekly wrote in the Daily Mail August 19, 2001:


    “A lot of the (American) expertise on anti-gravity dated from decades earlier and National Socialist Germany in particular. Much of what formed the basis of the Skunk Works’ (Lockheed) projects came from the German technology and expertise plundered by the Allies at the end of the Second World War. Germany was a treasure trove of desirable technology, covering everything from weaponry to electronics to textiles and medicine.


    Briton Ian Fleming, who was later to write the James Bond novels, set up what was virtually a private army tasked with ‘tech-plunder’. However, the British were ill-prepared to take advantage of the opportunities that faced them. The more resourceful (rapacious) Americans simply removed the paperwork for hundreds of thousands of patents and shipped them home. According to the US Office of Technical Services, the body set up to ensure that German technology was rapidly moved into American industry, the documents contained a wealth of material which “very likely contained practically all the scientific, industrial and military secrets of National Socialist Germany.”



    Compared to UK, US and USSR depression the Reich flourished


    Under the term ‘reparations’ millions of German peoples were transported to the Soviet gulags to be used as slave labour. For the large part these unfortunates, women and children included, were sealed in American made rolling stock and transported across a railway infrastructure built on slave labour using Western-made materials.



    Ralph Keeling says:

    “At Potsdam, Russia was apportioned the lion’s share of reparations.  She was to receive her own zone (East Germany/East Berlin) plus 25% from other zones.”


    The value of Germany’s bombed and battered plant was put at between 5 and 10 billion dollars; half of it was in the Russian zone and was now the Soviet Union’s ‘by right of conquest’.  It was agreed that 40% of it could be removed to the USSR. Three hundred and ten plants were dismantled and accordingly removed.


    Reich Tech 1

    Mercedes-Benz T80 Museum, Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. Officially sanctioned by Adolf Hitler (a race car fan influenced by Stuck), the project was started in 1937, while the Nazi Third Reich was at the height of its powers. Automotive designer Dr.Ferdinand Porsche first targeted a speed of 342 mph, but after George Eyston’s and John Cobb’s successful LSR runs of 1938 and 1939 the target speed was raised to 373 mph.


    Off they went:

    “Six shiploads carrying the physical assets of the Deschmag Shipyard, Germany’s largest shipbuilding company.  Twenty carloads of machinery and tools valued at $5,000,000, representing half of Germany’s largest ball-bearing plant, the Gendorf Amorgana Chemical works valued at $10,000,000, and the vast Daimler-Benz underground aircraft engine plant.”


    According to Reparations Commissioner, Edwin W. Pauley, the United States had earmarked 144 plants for removal to Russia. Many of Germany’s greatest producers of civilian goods were dismantled and shipped eastwards.  Among them were the two largest factories, the largest sugar refineries, the largest grain processing mills in Europe, the great Bemberg silk mills famous for their hosiery and lingerie, and the Zeiss Optical works at Jena. All secondary rail lines were torn up and all-electric locomotives removed. Two hundred key plants were placed under direct Russian control, with the German workforce of 1,300,000 on subsistence wages, the profits going to the USSR.”



    “Russia is as keen to get as much loot as possible to help make her Five Year Plan successful, and ultimately to absorb the Reich into the Soviet Union.”


    “France is ravenous for loot, has been anxious to destroy Germany forever, wants to get rid of Germany as a trade competitor, while retaining her as a market for British goods,” wrote Ralph Franklin Keeling. He added that “German nationals of Latin American nations were to be picked up and sent to Europe as slaves.”


    Reich in colour (1)


    The pillage of the defeated Reich reached across German borders: Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, and other countries were forced to hand over to the United States, all German assets, investments and properties. In what amounted to an obituary of a once trading rival Keeling solemnly writes:


    “Taking their foreign trade away from them, and making it impossible for them to export manufactured goods was tantamount, therefore, to pronouncing the death sentence on the German people.”







    Starvation of Germany after World War II

    Allied Policies Force Starvation


    Capt. Albert R. Behnke, a U.S. Navy medical doctor, stated in regard to Germany: “From 1945 to the middle of 1948 one saw the probable collapse, disintegration and destruction of a whole nation…Germany was subject to physical and psychic trauma unparalleled in history.” Behnke concluded that the Germans under the Allies had fared much worse than the Dutch under the Germans, and for far longer.[1]   


    Normal adult Germans in the American and British Zones were rationed only 1,550 calories per day. The average official calorie ration for Germans in the French Zone was only 1,400 per day. The actual calories received in the American, British and French Zones were often far less than these official amounts, and it was well known that these official ration amounts were not sufficient to maintain a healthy population. Herbert Hoover told President Truman that “the 1,550 ration is wholly incapable of supporting health.”[2] Hoover estimated that 2,200 calories per day “is a minimum in a nation for healthy human beings.”[3]   


    The destruction of the German infrastructure during the war had made it inevitable that some Germans would starve to death before roads, rails, canals and bridges could be restored. However, even when much of the German infrastructure had been repaired, the Allies deliberately withheld food from Germany. Continuing the policies of their predecessors, U.S. President Harry Truman and British Prime Minister Clement Attlee allowed the spirit of Henry Morgenthau and the Yalta Conference to dictate their policies toward Germany. The result was that millions of Germans were doomed to slow death by starvation.[4]    


    The Allies had studied German food production during the war, so they knew what to expect once Germany was defeated. The Allies knew that to strip off the rich farmlands of the east and give them to the Poles and Russians deprived Germany of over 25% of her arable land. Germans also starved in the east because the Russians confiscated so much food and virtually all of the factories. The French forced famine in their zone by the seizure of food and housing. The famine in the French Zone went on for years.[5]


    The danger of hunger and starvation was slow to abate throughout Germany. The famine that began in Germany in 1945 spread over all of occupied Germany and continued into 1948. This famine was camouflaged as much as possible by the Allied armies and governments.[6]


    Many Germans were prepared to see the Allies as liberating angels at first, but they soon realized that the Allies were adopting policies designed to hurt Germany’s recovery. The drastic reduction of fertilizer production under the Morgenthau Plan, for example, hurt Germany’s capacity to grow her own food. The use of German prisoners as slave labor in Allied countries subtracted from the labor force needed to bring in the reduced harvest. German prisoners who worked as slave laborers in the United Kingdom and France were horrified upon arriving home to find their families starving.[7]       


    Unable to feed themselves adequately from home production, the Germans tried desperately to increase production for export. However, the Germans were seriously hampered by the Allied reparations policy, which prevented them from exporting goods to increase the shrunken German food supply. The Allies had decided to take huge reparations amounting to at least $20 billion ($279 billion in 2018 dollars). Even as late as 1949, 268 factories were removed from Germany wholly or in part. The reduction in exports for food ensured that the German people would keep on starving.[8]


    The Allies not only prevented the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) from distributing food to German POWs, but they also refused requests by the ICRC to bring provisions into Germany for civilians. In the winter of 1945, ICRC donations to Germany were returned with the recommendation that the donations be used in other parts of war-torn Europe. The return of ICRC donations was made even for Irish and Swiss contributions that had been specifically raised to benefit Germany. It was not until March 1946 that ICRC donations were permitted to reach the American Zone in Germany.[9]


    The Allies also prevented various private relief agencies from providing food to German civilians. For example, the Swiss Relief Fund started a charity to feed a meal once a day to a thousand Bavarian children for two months. The American Zone occupation authorities decided that this aid should not be accepted. One Quaker attempting to provide relief to Germans said, “The U.S. Army made it difficult for relief.” In the United Kingdom in October 1945, “even the concept of voluntary aid via food parcels from Britain’s civilians was anathema to Whitehall.” Such aid to Germany was strictly forbidden.[10]


    U.S. Pvt. Martin Brech describes the famine conditions in Germany in 1945:


    Famine began to spread among the German civilians also. It was a common sight to see German women up to their elbows in our garbage cans looking for something edible—that is, if they weren’t chased away.


    When I interviewed mayors of small towns and villages, I was told their supply of food had been taken away by “displaced persons” (foreigners who had worked in Germany), who packed the food on trucks and drove away. When I reported this, the response was a shrug. I never saw any Red Cross at the camp or helping civilians, although their coffee and doughnut stands were available everywhere else for us. In the meantime, the Germans had to rely on the sharing of hidden stores until the next harvest.[11]


    American soldiers also stole from the German people and let German children go hungry. American aviation hero Charles Lindbergh wrote:


    German children look in through the window. We have more food than we need, but regulations prevent giving it to them. It is difficult to look at them. I feel ashamed, of myself, of my people, as I eat and watch those children. They are not to blame for the war. They are hungry children. What right have we to stuff ourselves while they look on—well-fed men eating, leaving unwanted food on plates, while hungry children look on?...There is an abundance of food in the American Army, and few men seem to care how hungry the German children are outside the door.[12]


    The Allies adopted additional policies that caused starvation in Germany. Food production and food imports came under specific attack when the German fishing fleet was prevented from going to sea for a year. The Allies also used false accounting to not credit the value of some German exports to the German account, making it impossible for Germans to earn foreign currency to buy food. Simply stated, many valuable goods were stolen from Germans beyond the reparations agreed upon by the Allies.[13]


    The German people put up a brave struggle for survival despite the harsh conditions. Malcolm Muir, publisher of Business Week, stated after a five-week tour of Europe, including Germany: “The Germans are making every effort to help themselves…It is not unusual to see a milch cow hitched to a plow, a woman leading the cow and a small boy guiding the plow.” However, despite the best efforts of German farmers, the food situation became critical and then catastrophic.[14]


    An official of the Food Branch of the American Military Government made the following report concerning the conditions in Germany:


    The greatest famine catastrophe of recent centuries is upon us in central Europe. Our Government is letting down our military government in the food deliveries it promised, although what Generals Clay, Draper, and Hester asked for and were promised was the barest minimum for survival of the people. We will be forced to reduce the rations from 1,550 calories to 1,000 or less calories.


    The few buds of democracy will be burned out in the agony of death of the aged, the women, and the children.


    The British and we are going on record as the ones who let the Germans starve. The Russians will release at the height of the famine substantial food stores they have locked up (300,000 to 400,000 tons of sugar, large quantities of potatoes).


    Aside from the inhumanity involved, it is so criminally stupid to give such a performance of incredible fumbling before the eyes of the world. It makes all the many hard-working officers of the Office of Military Government, Food and Agricultural Branch, ashamed.[15]


    American journalist and radio broadcaster Dorothy Thompson wrote:


    The children of Europe are starving. Six years of war, indescribable destruction, and the lunatic policies which have added to the disintegration inherited from the collapse of the Nazi regime have done their work. Germany, and with it Europe, is skidding into the abyss.


    The facts are at last being revealed through what has amounted to a conspiracy of silence here…This war was fought by the West in the name of Christian civilization, the Four Freedoms, and the dignity of man against those who were perpetrating crimes against humanity. But policies which must inevitably result in the postwar extermination of tens of thousands of children are also “crimes against humanity.”[16]


    The desperation of the German population for food was observed by Kathryn Hulme, the deputy director of one of Bavaria’s many displaced persons camps. She wrote about the scramble for Red Cross packages at the Wildflecken Camp:


    It is hard to believe that some shiny little tins of meat paste and sardines could almost start a riot in the camp, that bags of Lipton’s tea and tins of Varrington House coffee and bars of vitaminized chocolate could drive men almost insane with desire. But this is so. This is as much a part of the destruction of Europe as are those gaunt ruins of Frankfurt. Only this is the ruin of the human soul. It is a thousand times more painful to see.[17]


    One survey in the American Zone concluded that 60% of the Germans were living on a diet that would lead to disease and malnutrition. By October 1945, random weighing of German adults revealed a falloff of body weight of 13-15%. Children, pregnant women and the elderly suffered the most. Their diets were lacking sufficient protein and vitamins, and cases of rickets were common among German infants.[18]


    The German Central Administration of Health reported the deadly effects of malnutrition:


    The people hunger…They are emaciated to the bone. Their clothes hang loose on their bodies, the lower extremities are like the bones of a skeleton, their hands shake as though with palsy, the muscles of the arms are withered, the skin lies in folds, and is without elasticity, the joints spring out as though broken.


    The weight of the women of average height and build has fallen way below 110 pounds. Often women of child-bearing age weigh no more than 65 pounds. The number of still-born children is approaching the number of those born alive, and an increasing proportion of these die in a few days. Even if they come into the world of normal weight, they start immediately to lose weight and die shortly. Very often the mothers cannot stand the loss of blood in childbirth and perish. Infant mortality has reached the horrifying height of 90%.[19]


    The German people starved while the Americans around them lived in luxury. American historian Ralph Franklin Keeling wrote:


    While the Germans around them starve, wear rags, and live in hovels, the American aristocrats live in often unaccustomed ease and luxury. Their wives must be specially marked to protect them from licentious advances; they live in the finest homes from which they drove the Germans; they swagger about in fine liveries and gorge themselves on diets three times as great as they allow the Germans, and allow “displaced persons” diets twice as great. When we tell the Germans their low rations are necessary because food is so short, they naturally either think we are lying to them or regard us as inhuman for taking the lion’s share of the short supplies while they and their children starve.[20]


    George Kennan was also outraged by the disparity in living conditions between the Germans and Americans in Germany. Kennan stated:


    Each time I had come away with a sense of sheer horror at the spectacle of this horde of my compatriots and their dependents camping in luxury amid the ruins of a shattered national community, ignorant of the past, oblivious to the abundant evidences of tragedy all around them, inhabiting the same sequestered villas that the Gestapo and SS had just abandoned, and enjoying the same privileges, flaunting their silly supermarket luxuries in the face of a veritable ocean of deprivation, hunger and wretchedness, setting an example of empty materialism and cultural poverty before a people desperately in need of spiritual and intellectual guidance.[21] 


    U.S. Senators and British Humanitarians Protest Starvation Policies


    Some informed political leaders spoke out against the Allied policy of mass starvation of the German people. In an address before the U.S. Senate on February 5, 1946, Sen. Homer E. Capehart of Indiana said in part:


    The fact can no longer be suppressed, namely, the fact that it has been and continues to be, the deliberate policy of a confidential and conspirational clique within the policy-making circles of this government to draw and quarter a nation now reduced to abject misery.


    In this process this clique, like a pack of hyenas struggling over the bloody entrails of a corpse, and inspired by a sadistic and fanatical hatred, are determined to destroy the German nation and the German people, no matter what the consequences.


    At Potsdam the representatives of the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics solemnly signed the following declaration of principles and purposes: “It is not the intention of the Allies to destroy or enslave the German people.”


    Mr. President, the cynical and savage repudiation of these solemn declarations which has resulted in a major catastrophe, cannot be explained in terms of ignorance or incompetence. This repudiation, not only of the Potsdam Declaration, but also of every law of God and men, has been deliberately engineered with such a malevolent cunning, and with such diabolical skill, that the American people themselves have been caught in an international death trap.


    For nine months now this administration has been carrying on a deliberate policy of mass starvation without any distinction between the innocent and helpless and the guilty alike.


    The first issue has been and continues to be purely humanitarian. This vicious clique within this administration that has been responsible for the policies and practices which have made a madhouse of central Europe has not only betrayed our American principles, but they have betrayed the GIs who have suffered and died, and they continue to betray the American GIs who have to continue their dirty work for them.


    The second issue that is involved is the effect this tragedy in Germany has already had on the other European countries. Those who have been responsible for this deliberate destruction of the German state and this criminal mass starvation of the German people have been so zealous in their hatred that all other interests and concerns have been subordinated to this one obsession of revenge. In order to accomplish this it mattered not if the liberated countries in Europe suffered and starved. To this point this clique of conspirators has addressed themselves: “Germany is to be destroyed. What happens to other countries of Europe in the process is of secondary importance.”


    Sen. Capehart’s remarks were interspersed with a mass of supporting evidence.[22]


    In a speech to the U.S. Senate on December 3, 1945, Sen. James Eastland of Mississippi spoke of the great difficulty he had encountered in gaining access to the official report on conditions in Germany. Sen. Eastland stated:


    There appears to be a conspiracy of silence to conceal from our people the true picture of conditions in Europe, to secrete from us the fact regarding conditions of the continent and information as to our policies toward the German people…Are the real facts withheld because our policies are so cruel that the American people would not endorse them?


    What have we to hide, Mr. President? Why should these facts be withheld from the people of the United States? There cannot possibly be any valid reason for secrecy. Are we following a policy of vindictive hatred, a policy which would not be endorsed by the American people as a whole if they knew true conditions?


    Mr. President, I should be less than honest if I did not state frankly that the picture is so much worse, so much more confused, than the American people suspect, that I do not know of any source that is capable of producing the complete factual account of the true situation into which our policies have taken the American people. The truth is that the nations of central, southern, and eastern Europe are adrift on a flood of anarchy and chaos.[23]


    Sen. William Langer of North Dakota stated in the U.S. Senate:


    History already records that a savage minority of bloody bitter-enders within this government forced the acceptance of the brutal Morgenthau Plan upon the present administration. I ask, Mr. President, why in God’s name did the administration accept it?...Recent developments have merely confirmed scores of earlier charges that this addlepated and vicious Morgenthau Plan had torn Europe in two and left half of Germany incorporated in the ever-expanding sphere of influence of an oriental totalitarian conspiracy. By continuing a policy which keeps Germany divided against itself, we are dividing the world against itself and turning loose across the face of Europe a power and an enslaving and degrading cruelty surpassing that of Hitler’s.[24]


    The Senate warmly applauded Sen. Langer’s speech.


    The Senate approved a resolution proposed by Sen. Kenneth Wherry of Nebraska to establish a group with a budget to study and report in detail the conditions in Germany. Wherry stated:       “Terrifying reports are filtering through the British, French and American occupied zones, and even more gruesome reports from the Russian occupied zone, revealing a horrifying picture of deliberate and wholesale starvation.” Wherry criticized the Truman administration for doing nothing despite the pleas for intercession to prevent a major tragedy. Wherry also questioned Governor Lehman, the person in charge of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA), who admitted that the UN aid was not going to the starving Germans. Finally, Wherry said, “The truth is that there are thousands upon thousands of tons of military rations in our surplus stock piles that have been spoiling right in the midst of starving populations.”[25]


    Sen. Langer received new information which caused him to speak in the Senate on March 29, 1946:


    [We] are caught in what has now unfolded as a savage and fanatical plot to destroy the German people by visiting on them a punishment in kind for the atrocities of their leaders. Not only have the leaders of this plot permitted the whole world situation to get…out of hand…but their determination to destroy the German people and the German Nation, no matter what the consequences to our own moral principles, to our leadership in world affairs, to our Christian faith, to our allies, or to the whole future peace of the world, has become a world scandal…We have all seen the grim pictures of the piled-up bodies uncovered by the American and British armies, and our hearts have been wrung with pity at the sight of such emaciation—reducing adults and even little children to mere skeletons. Yet now, to our utter horror, we discover that our own policies have merely spread those same conditions even more widely…among our former enemies.[26]


    Sen. Albert W. Hawkes of New Jersey urged President Truman to allow private relief packages to be sent to Germany to prevent mass starvation of the German people. Truman in a reply dated December 21, 1945, stated “there is as yet no possibility of making deliveries of packages in Germany” because “the postal system and the communications and transportation systems of Germany are in the state of total collapse.” Truman then said:


    Our efforts have been directed particularly toward taking care of those who fought with us rather than against us—Norwegians, Belgians, the Dutch, the Greeks, the Poles, the French. Eventually the enemy countries will be given some attention.


    While we have no desire to be unduly cruel to Germany, I cannot feel any great sympathy for those who caused the death of so many human beings by starvation, disease, and outright murder, in addition to all the destruction and death of war. Perhaps eventually a decent government can be established in Germany so that Germany can again take its place in the family of nations. I think that in the meantime no one should be called upon to pay for Germany’s misfortune except Germany itself.


    Until the misfortunes of those whom Germany oppressed are oblivated (sic), it does not seem right to divert our efforts to Germany itself. I admit that there are, of course, many innocent people in Germany who had little to do with the Nazi terror. However, the administrative burden of trying to locate these people and treat them differently from the rest is one which is almost insuperable.[27]


    British intellectuals such as Bertrand Russell and Victor Gollancz also worked to publicize the suffering and mass starvation of the German people. Gollancz objected to the contrast he saw between the accommodations and food in the British officers’ mess and the miserable, half-starved hovels outside. In March 1946 the average calories per day in the British Zone had fluctuated between 1,050 and 1,591. British authorities in Germany were proposing to cut the rations back to 1,000 calories per day. Gollancz pointed out that the inmates at Bergen-Belsen toward the end of the war had only 800 calories per day, which was not much less than the British proposal.[28]


    Gollancz made a six-week tour of the British Zone in October and November 1946. In January 1947 Gollancz published the book In Darkest Germany to document what he saw on this trip. Assisted by a photographer, Gollancz included numerous pictures to allay skepticism of the veracity of his reports. The pictures show Gollancz standing behind naked boys suffering from malnutrition; or holding a fully worn and unusable child’s shoe; or comforting a crippled, half-starved adult in his hovel. The point was to show that Gollancz had seen these things with his own eyes and had not merely accepted other people’s reports. Gollancz also wrote to a newspaper editor: “Youth [in Germany] is being poisoned and re-nazified: we have all but lost the peace.”[29]


    Victor Gollancz concluded: “The plain fact is when spring is in the English air we are starving the German people…Others, including ourselves, are to keep or be given comforts while the Germans lack the bare necessities of existence. If it is a choice between discomfort for another and suffering for the German, the German must suffer; if between suffering for another and death for the German, the German must die.”[30]


    Months after the war had ended and the Allies had assumed complete control of the German government, the Bishop of Chichester, quoting a noted German pastor, said: “Thousands of bodies are hanging in the trees in the woods around Berlin and nobody bothers to cut them down. Thousands of corpses are carried into the sea by the Oder and Elbe Rivers—one doesn’t notice it any longer. Thousands and thousands are starving in the highways…Children roam the highways alone, their parents shot, dead, lost.”[31] 


    Starvation Policies Continue


    Despite the efforts of U.S. senators and British humanitarians, the Allied starvation policies continued through 1946 and into 1947. A group of German doctors reported in 1947 that the actual daily calorie ration issued for three months in the Ruhr section of the British Zone averaged only 800 per person. Dr. Gustav Stolper, a member of the Hoover Commission fact-finding team, reported that the ration in both the British and American Zones for “a long time in 1946 and 1947 dropped to between 700 and 1,200 calories per day.”[32]


    U.S. Secretary of War Robert Patterson wrote to U.S. Secretary of State George C. Marshall concerning the famine in Germany in 1947: “[Our] occupation has no chance of success if these [famine] conditions continue. This state of affairs has been foreseen, and I have urged repeatedly that priority be recognized for food shipments to Germany. The basis for the priority is the prevention of famine in the US-UK zones of Germany…”[33]


    Germany was still being operated under the Morgenthau Plan and the Potsdam Agreement. These two programs shared a crucial conceptual flaw: central to both schemes was the paradoxical policy of transforming Germany into an agricultural economy while at the same time depriving Germany of her most valuable agricultural regions and displacing the population of these regions into rump Germany. These policies made it impossible for Germany to feed her population. Germany would have to industrialize to be able to export something to buy a minimum diet for her people. By taking away a quarter of Germany’s arable land, the Allies created a situation in which Germany’s existence would necessarily be even more dependent on industrialization than before the war.[34]


    The economic disruptions caused by Germany’s zonal partition also hurt the German economy. The Soviet Zone oriented itself more and more toward the East and continued to extract maximum reparations out of its zone. The French Zone stagnated because of France’s unwillingness to cooperate in any all-German program until the question of the Saar was solved in France’s favor. France also feared a revival of Germany’s economic strength.[35]


    The refusal to feed the Germans—or allow anyone else to feed them—gave rise to extremely negative feelings among Germans toward the Allies. Carl Zuckmayer reported conversations he overheard in bread lines in the American Zone: “Yes, Hitler was bad, our war was wrong, but now they are doing the same wrong to us, they are all the same, there is no difference, they want to enslave Germany in exactly the same way as Hitler wanted to enslave the Poles, now we are the Jews, the “inferior race”, they are letting us starve intentionally, can’t you see that is their plan, they take away all our sources of income and let us die slowly, the gas chambers worked quicker…”[36]


    German Protestant Church president and former Dachau prisoner Martin Niemöller spoke of the suffering and starvation of Germans after the war. Niemöller said to an American audience when he toured the United States from December 1946 to April 1947:


    The offices of our [American] military government are very nicely and cozily heated and our military government people live a good life as far as nourishment and everything else, even housing, is concerned. But they don’t know how people really think and react who are hungry, who are on the way to starving.


    Niemöller said Germans were receiving no better than “the lowest ration ever heard of in a Nazi concentration camp.”[37]


    Although Niemöller raised more money than expected from his American tour, he was disappointed in its outcome because he was not able to improve U.S. occupation policies in Germany. After months in America, Niemöller’s return to war-ravaged Germany came as a shock. Niemöller wrote to Pastor Ewart Turner:


    The winter is over, but you feel it everywhere—in the cold which is still harboring in the rooms, especially in this old castle with its thick stone walls. The water pipes are broken. No running water in kitchen or toilet. Sitting at my desk I shiver from cold even now, and the only place where I feel some relief is once again in the bed. The food situation is more than difficult, and I scarcely dare to take a slice of bread, thinking that Hertha, Tini, and Hermann [his children] are far more in need of having it than I, and I can’t help feeling guilty for being so well fed [in the United States]. The whole aspect of life is grim and dark; you see the traces of progressive starvation in every face you come to see.[38]


    The physical and emotional toll of hunger, cold and disillusionment made life in Germany intolerable for Niemöller. Niemöller’s wife Else bemoaned when they got back to Germany from America that, “It was so much easier there than here.” Niemöller told Pastor Turner that if things didn’t improve, “I should prefer to be back in my cell number 31 at Dachau.” Niemöller blamed “the followers of the Morgenthau Plan” who had moved their “headquarters from Washington to the American Zone.”[39]


    In another letter to Turner in the fall of 1947, Niemöller wrote:


    The [coming] winter will be a very severe test for all of us. The rations in fat and meat have been cut again to 25 grams of butter and 100 grams of meat a week! And no potatoes. The normal consumer probably will die this winter, and that Jew [in the occupation forces] will have been right who answered my question, what would become of the too many people in the Western Zones, by saying: “Don’t worry, we shall look after that and the problem will be solved in quite a natural way!”


    Niemöller understood the Jewish official’s phrase “a natural way” to mean death by starvation.[40]


    Starvation Policies End


    What finally led the Western Allies to a revision of their occupation policy in Germany was the fear of a Communist takeover of Europe. The Western Allies feared that if Germany remained Europe’s slum, social unrest would force it into the Communist camp and the rest of Europe would follow. The anti-Communists in Poland had already been forced out of power, with only a few anti-Communists escaping to safety. Similar undemocratic developments were subverting Romania, Hungary and Czechoslovakia. The Communist parties in France and Italy were gaining strength and had caused several general strikes. Europe was ripe for a Communist takeover, and the Western Allies realized that something needed to be done to stop it.[41]


    The threat of a Communist takeover in Europe had long been recognized by Allied leaders. French Marshal Alphonse Juin stated to Gen. George Patton at a dinner in Paris in August 1945: “It is indeed unfortunate that the English and Americans have destroyed the only sound country in Europe--and I do not mean France--therefore the road is now open for the advent of Russian communism.”[42]   


    Patton himself had warned of the danger of Russian communism resulting from the destruction of Germany. Patton stated, “What we are doing is to utterly destroy the only semi-modern state in Europe so that Russia can swallow the whole.”[43]


    After an unsuccessful Moscow meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers in March 1947, the Western Allies realized the necessity of setting a new course independent of the Soviet Union. George F. Kennan observed, “It was plain that the Soviet leaders had a political interest in seeing the economies of the Western European peoples fail under anything other than communist leadership.” With total economic disintegration in Europe imminent, a new plan was needed to shore up the ailing European economies.[44] 


    The European Recovery Program, better known as the Marshall Plan, was originally envisaged by U.S. Secretary of State George Marshall to promote the economic recovery of Europe on both sides of the iron curtain. However, the Soviet Union took steps to prevent any of the Eastern European countries from participating in the Marshall Plan. The Soviet Union organized a rival program for recovery in Eastern Europe known as the Molotov Plan. The Soviet-dominated Cominform urged Communists everywhere to help defeat the Marshall Plan, which it described as an instrument for “world domination by American imperialism.”[45]


    The Marshall Plan withstood the Soviet challenge. For the period from April 3, 1948 to June 30, 1952, the Marshall Plan allocated $3.176 billion to the United Kingdom, $2.706 billion to France, and $1.474 billion to Italy. Only $1.389 billion went to West Germany, of which Germany later repaid approximately $1 billion. However, the German economy was helped the most by the aid. One commentator described the effect of the Marshall Plan on West Germany:


    The effects had been prodigious, equaled in no other European country, although Germany got only a relatively small portion of Marshall Plan aid. Europe received in all $20 billion from the United States; in 1954 the figures per capita had amounted to $39 for Germany as against $72 for France, $77 for England, $33 for Italy and $104 for Austria. But in Germany the help came at precisely the right time, when the accumulated pressures for both physical and psychological reconstruction had reached a bursting point.[46]


    The effect of the Marshall Plan in Germany was almost magical. The German economy was plainly reviving within months; within a year it was expanding faster than any other economy in Europe; and within a decade Germany was close to the richest country in Europe. The growth of Germany’s economy put an end to the starvation of the German people. According to Gen. Maurice Pope, who in 1948 was with the Canadian Military Mission in Germany, “conditions improved overnight…[soon] the modest corner grocery store was displaying delicacies of all kinds and at quite reasonable prices.”[47]


    How Many Germans Starved to Death after World War II?


    The death-rate figures reported in the U.S. Military Governor reports indicate that very few Germans died among the expelled or non-expelled Germans of the three Western zones. These widely disseminated U.S. Military Governor reports have been accepted by most historians, and are the basis for the belief today that the death rate among Germans was not unusually high after World War II. 


    The falsity of these reports is shown by comparing the 1947 report, which was a year of extreme starvation and misery remembered by Germans as the Hunger Year, to other peacetime years in Germany. The U.S. Military Governor report in December 1947 stated that the death rate among German civilians was 12.1 per year per thousand. This is only slightly higher than the death rate among Germans before the war, and is less than the death rate of 12.2 per thousand per year during the two prosperous years of 1968-1969. The death-rate figure in the 1947 U.S. Military Governor report of 12.1 per year per thousand cannot possibly be accurate.[48]


    The reality is that millions of resident German civilians died after the end of World War II. James Bacque estimates 5.7 million Germans already residing in Germany died from the starvation policies implemented by the Allies after the war. Bacque details how this 5.7 million death total is calculated:


    The population of all occupied Germany in October 1946 was 65,000,000, according to the census prepared under the ACC. The returning prisoners who were added to the population in the period October 1946-September 1950 numbered 2,600,000 (rounded), according to records in the archives of the four principal Allies. Births according to the official German statistical agency, Statistisches Bundesamt, added another 4,176,430 newcomers to Germany. The expellees arriving totaled 6,000,000. Thus the total population in 1950 before losses would have been 77,776,430, according to the Allies themselves. Deaths officially recorded in the period 1946-50 were 3,235,539, according to the UN Yearbook and the German government. Emigration was about 600,000, according to the German government. Thus the population found should have been 73,940,891. But the census of 1950 done by the German government under Allied supervision found only 68,230,796. There was a shortage of 5,710,095 people, according to the official Allied figures (rounded to 5,700,000).[49]


    Bacque’s calculations have been confirmed by Dr. Anthony B. Miller, who is a world-famous epidemiologist and Head of the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biostatistics at the University of Toronto. Miller read the whole work, including the documents, and checked the statistics, which he says “confirms the validity of [Bacque’s] calculations...” Miller states: “These deaths appear to have resulted, directly or indirectly, from the semi-starvation food rations that were all that were available to the majority of the German population during this time period.”[50]




    The millions of Germans who starved to death do not constitute the entire story of the crime that was committed on Germany after World War II. German women who had been repeatedly raped by Allied soldiers had to bear the physical and psychological scars for the rest of their lives. Millions of German expellees who lost all of their real estate and most of their personal property were never compensated by the Allies. Instead, they had to live in abject poverty in Germany after being expelled from their homes. Millions of other Germans had their property stolen or destroyed by Allied soldiers. The Allied postwar treatment of Germany is surely one of the most brutal, criminal and unreported tragedies in world history.



    [1] Behnke, Capt. Albert R., USN, MC, “Physiological and Psychological Factors in Individual and Group Survival,” June 1958 (Behnke Papers, Box 1, HIA). Quoted in Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, p. 89.

    [2] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, pp. 89-90.

    [3] Chicago Daily Tribune, Oct. 10, 1945.

    [4] Goodrich, Thomas, Hellstorm: The Death of Nazi Germany, 1944-1947, Sheridan, Colo.: Aberdeen Books, 2010, p. 287.

    [5] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, pp. 90-91.

    [6] Ibid., p. 93.

    [7] Ibid., p. 92.

    [8] Ibid., pp. 91-92.

    [9] MacDonogh, Giles, After the Reich: The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation, New York: Basic Books, 2007, p. 362.

    [10] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, pp. 157-158.

    [11] Brech, Martin, “In ‘Eisenhower’s Death Camps’: A U.S. Prison Guard’s Story,” The Journal of Historical Review, Vol. 10, No. 2, Summer 1990, p. 165.

    [12] Lindbergh, Charles, The Wartime Journals of Charles A. Lindbergh, New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc., 1970, pp. 953, 960-961, 989-990.

    [13] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, p. 149.

    [14] Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, pp. 67-68.

    [15] Ibid., pp. 70-71. From Congressional Record, March 29, 1946, pp. 2858-2859.

    [16] Ibid., pp. 73-74. From Congressional Record, Dec. 4, 1945, p. 11561.

    [17] Hitchcock, William I., The Bitter Road to Freedom: A New History of the Liberation of Europe, New York: Free Press, 2008, p. 277.

    [18] Ibid., pp. 206-207.

    [19] Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, pp. 71-72.

    [20] Ibid., p. 101.

    [21] Botting, Douglas, From the Ruins of the Reich—Germany, 1945-1949, New York: Crown Publishers, 1985, p. 215.

    [22] Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, pp. 75-76.

    [23] Ibid., p. 76.

    [24] Langer, William, Congressional Record of the Senate, March 29, 1946. Quoted in Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, p. 30.

    [25] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, pp. 31-32.

    [26] Ibid., p. 38.

    [27] Congressional Record, Jan. 29, 1946, pp. 530-531. Quoted in Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, pp. 79-80.

    [28] MacDonogh, Giles, After the Reich: The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation, New York: Basic Books, 2007, pp. 253, 363.

    [29] Ibid., pp. 364-365.

    [30] Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, pp. 76-77.

    [31] Congressional Record, Dec. 20, 1945, p. A6130. Quoted in Keeling, Ralph Franklin, Gruesome Harvest: The Allies’ Postwar War against the German People, Torrance, Cal.: Institute for Historical Review, 1992, p. 67.

    [32] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, pp. 110, 210.

    [33] Ibid., p. 125.

    [34] De Zayas, Alfred-Maurice, Nemesis at Potsdam: The Anglo-Americans and the Expulsion of the Germans, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1977, pp. 134-135.

    [35] Ibid., p. 139.

    [36] MacDonogh, Giles, After the Reich: The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation, New York: Basic Books, 2007, p. 365.

    [37] Hockenos, Matthew D., Then They Came for Me: Martin Niemöller, The Pastor Who Defied the Nazis, New York: Basic Books, 2018, p. 204.

    [38] Ibid., p. 212.

    [39] Ibid.

    [40] Ibid., p. 213.

    [41] De Zayas, Alfred-Maurice, Nemesis at Potsdam: The Anglo-Americans and the Expulsion of the Germans, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1977, p. 136.

    [42] Bacque, James, Other Losses: An Investigation into the Mass Deaths of German Prisoners at the Hands of the French and Americans after World War II, 1944-1950, 3rd edition, Vancouver: Talonbooks, 2011, pp. 172-173.

    [43] Goodrich, Thomas, Hellstorm: The Death of Nazi Germany, 1944-1947, Sheridan, Colo.: Aberdeen Books, 2010, p. 321.

    [44] De Zayas, Alfred-Maurice, Nemesis at Potsdam: The Anglo-Americans and the Expulsion of the Germans, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1977, pp. 136-137.

    [45] Ibid., p. 137.

    [46] Ibid., pp. 139-140.

    [47] Bacque, James, Crimes and Mercies: The Fate of German Civilians under Allied Occupation, 1944-1950, 2nd edition, Vancouver, British Columbia: Talonbooks, 2007, p. 163.

    [48] Ibid., pp. 108-109.

    [49] Ibid., pp. 115-116.

    [50] Ibid., pp. xvii-xviii.