the banishment of the Sudeten Germans

Discussion in 'Germany' started by FschJgBtl 261 Lebach, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    Gotthard

    I do understand that the veterans on this forum may not agree with me and that is their right, they fought for a better future for all of us.


    Consider also, that we have had much more time to think about it !

    Ron
     
  2. L J

    L J Senior Member

    While the German civilians suffered at the hands of the victors,it reflected the fact that the very first victims of modern warfare are likely to be civilians of both belligerents.The question of German civilian casualties is often raised nearly 70 years after the events when the hardships of these civiliians are being discussed.Many are now expressing a view that the German people suiffered unneccessary at the hands of the victors and are attempting to equate this with the illtreatment and murder of civilian populations in German occupied territories.Nothing could be further from the truth and the acts of both belligerents can be separated when they are looked at rationally.

    Until the "Haque Regulations Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land" which was adopted by the Hague Peace Conference in 1907.(Notice it did not anticipate war by air which I believe the Italians were the first to employ in 1911).Nevertheless this international regulation formed the foundation their obligation to civilians that belligerents would follow in the in time of war.

    The important aspect of these international regulations is to be found in Article 46 which provided that "family honour and rights,the lives of persons and private property,as well religious convictions and practices must be respected".Now if you look at the operations of German forces throughout their occupied territories in the Second World War,you will find wholesale breaches of that article,directed,encouraged and motivated by the then German state and its military and administrative structures.For this reason,I would say the treatment of civilians can be made separate in comparsion.

    The effect of the then German state domestic and foriegn policies was that millions of civilians were deported from their homes into forced labour and slavery.Thousands of hostages,reprisal prisoners and prisoners were put to death,the latter without so much as a trial.If there were trials established, the outcome was rigged and execution followed.Towns and villages were raised to the ground and don't forget that for Oradour sur Glane,there were 600 villages and their inhabitants put to the sword in the Soviet Union in the same manner.

    Millions of Jews were exterminated including Germany's own Jewish population.Thousands of innocent civilians were subject to mass executions and some were lucky to have been carried off to concentration camps and the like.Those who were regarded as "untermenchen" were worked to death to support a German war economy which was quickly found not to be self supportive from its German population.Foodstuffs were seized from occupied teriritories to the point that those civilians in these occupied countries were left to exist at starvation level.The same policy applied to raw materials and machinery,all plundered to maintain the Gernman war economy.Then there were the art lovers of the Third Reich who systematically arranged the seizure of art treasures and furniture from occupied countries to add to their own collections.These were not "ad hoc" acts by individuals,although people such as Goring was prominent in looting occupied countries for his own sake,it was the then German state policy.

    The misery and suffering of the German people can be firmly put where it belongs and that is with the Hitler regime.The first stone was cast in 1934 when the leadership German armed forces agreed to state an oath of loyalty to Hitler.This was followed by the failure of the military leadership in 1938 to dispose of Hitler when they knew that there would be a price to pay when they were made aware of the intentions to extend east in the name of the Greater German Reich.Hitler could not have continued without the support of the military structure and the proposal and act to enforce a coup d'etat in July 1944 did not appear to some to be vigorous enough.

    For the German civilian.It was he who was entwined in Nazism.The people who voted for Hitler knew who they were voting for.They supported him morally and knew what Nazism stood for.Germany could never recovered the disputed territories without war and although Hitler could disguise his intentions until March 1939,others in Europe finally had to think logically and rationally that what Hitler was about.He was about war.

    For the German people,in Germany's decline from 1943 when many,we are told knew that Germany would lose the war,found themselves unable to see a satisfactory end to their suffering.They were in hands of an irrational leader who was determined to take his adopted country down with him irrespective of the harm done to the country's people and its infrastucture.

    It cost Europe dear to reinstate democracy in Germany and that was only one half.In monetary terms,it cost Britain 13 million pounds a day to wage war and by the end, the country was near to bankruptcy.On the other hand,Germany could rise from the ashes heavily subsidised by Marshall Aid which Britain could not draw on.
    sorry to contradict you,but Britain was the number one of Marshall help recievers:
    Britain :3.19 billion $
    France:2.7
    Italy :1.5
    Germany:1.39
     
  3. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Old Hickory Recon

    [​IMG]



    Doesn't alter the intent, but this map has Yugoslavia labeled as Austria.
     
  4. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    And France suffered the effects of global warming to the utmost degree.
     
  5. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    Gotthard



    Consider also, that we have had much more time to think about it !

    Ron
    :lol: Well said sir! :lol: You do have the benefit of time indeed!
     
  6. Harry Ree

    Harry Ree Very Senior Member

    sorry to contradict you,but Britain was the number one of Marshall help recievers:
    Britain :3.19 billion $
    France:2.7
    Italy :1.5
    Germany:1.39

    Thanks for the correction.I was under the impression that Britain was excluded.The scheme only was in existence for the period 1948-1951 when the republicans gained power and cancelled the plan.Interesting to see who some of the recipients were,some were not involved in the Second World War.Countries such as Eire,Swizerland and Turkey benefitted from the plan leading to an observation that the plan motivation was the enhancement of US exports.
     
  7. martin14

    martin14 Senior Member

    1) Define revisionist.

    2) It is my contention that Germany got a whole lot more than they bargained for when they gave 44% to the NSDAP in 1933.

    3) It looks like you are green enough on this forum to cast such aspersions on me. Physically it is unlikely but I would not appreciate it if you called me that in my face.


    1) Define 'ethnic cleansing', and you can throw when the term first started being used.

    2) Yes, the German people do hold a certain amount of responsibility for the results of their choices.

    3a) It looks like you have been around long enough to establish a certain amount of arrogance to be able to ask such a baited type question..
    so ethnic cleansing is a good thing, right ?..
    then feign shock and surprise when the green guy decides to push back a little.

    3b) the internet tough guy.. please, one thing I am sure of is that you are better than that.


    Thanks and have a nice day. :)
     
  8. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    From Ethnic Cleansing - Online Encyclopedia of Mass Violence

    ...ethnic cleansing is closer to forced deportation and what has been called “population transfer.” The idea is to get people to move, and the means used to this end range from the legal to the semi-legal.
    Similarly, at the end of World War II, when the Polish and Czechoslovak governments decided to forcibly deport their respective German populations (which together comprised over 11.5 million people), as many as two million may have died, mostly from disease, exposure, and malnutrition. In both sets of cases, the “modernity” of the operations was evident: in the completeness of the transfers, the nationalism that drove them, the State-defined legality that supported them, and the means of moving people from their homes. Although the “Germans” were ultimately responsible for the circumstances that prompted their deportation, their transfer should be seen primarily as a case of ethnic cleansing, one that was given an international imprimatur by the Potsdam Treaty of July-August 1945.

    The Wikipedia article on ethnic cleansing contains an unfortunately long list of other instances of EC, in 20th and 21st centuries as well as before. Legality of EC per what I read in several sources seems to be ambiguous, I won't go into that.

    I'd add that within duration of WW2 there had been a settlement movement of German populations into the General Governement; how many this involved and how many later were expelled making part of the numbers above I don't know. As a side note, one particular case I remember is v. Manstein being presented by Hitler with a large estate in the Warthegau, the Wikipedia link is interesting and offers some figures. Also one of the casus belli by Germany against Poland had been supposed massacres of German populations by the Polish authorities, I do remember seeing an original propaganda book with some ghastly photos a couple of decades ago, the wolf playing the victim.

    After the war, considering all that had happened, all the colonizations, all the troubles caused by the German minorities as in the Sudeten, it seems understandable that governments wished to avoid maintaining a possible 5th column inside the borders, and the solution would be to send them back to Germany, them having settled a year ago or 300 years ago.

    On another tack, the fact remains that in 1933 the Nazis won the election by a 44% vote, the rest being fragmented along a hopeless multitude of more or less small parties. Was their full agenda open to the electorate? Or was this agenda a changing animal, policy evolving with time? I'd like to remind that the Gestapo and the SD were not exactly created for Herr Flick to hunt downed British airmen as in Allo Allo, they were raised as repression tools against German malcontents by a gouvernment that didn't care a hoot for the well-being of it's people.

    Does all this make a revisionist of me? Yes, I'm a revisionist. Everything has to be subject to revision, every day new facts come up. History is a living thing, and what was established fact yesterday may have different aspects shown to light as research deepens. For an instance thank goodness better books on Kursk have appeared since Martin Caidin's The Tigers Are Burning, otherwise we would still be believing the T-34s ramming Tigers BS.
     
    L J likes this.
  9. L J

    L J Senior Member

    Sadly enough,there was nothing new-nor exceptional in the expulsion of the Sudeten Germans:some ex:
    the deportation of French Canadians by the British in the 18th century
    Germans forced to leave the Alsace after WWI
    Poland expelling Germans after WWI
    Germany expelling Poles in 1939 from the annexated territories
    The Greek community expelled from Turkey in 1922
    And what about the Jews,expelled from Germany?The Huguenotes from France?The Jews from Palestine,by the Romans ?.........
     
  10. sorry to contradict you,but Britain was the number one of Marshall help recievers:
    Britain :3.19 billion $
    France:2.7
    Italy :1.5
    Germany:1.39

    and lest we forget, money does not "built up" anything....

    Trümmerfrau - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
  11. martin14

    martin14 Senior Member

    Sadly enough,there was nothing new-nor exceptional in the expulsion of the Sudeten Germans:some ex:
    the deportation of French Canadians by the British in the 18th century
    Germans forced to leave the Alsace after WWI
    Poland expelling Germans after WWI
    Germany expelling Poles in 1939 from the annexated territories
    The Greek community expelled from Turkey in 1922
    And what about the Jews,expelled from Germany?The Huguenotes from France?The Jews from Palestine,by the Romans ?.........


    You could fill pages with examples of people moving by agreement or not.

    The Sudetenland is nothing new.

    Nor is asking people to help clean up their country after a war;
    I dont suppose England was rebuilt all by herself.


    Za, I have a question for you:

    Since the problems created by German minorities in other countries before WW2 has been noted, and the 1945 mindset was different from today,
    do you have any suggestions for how to deal with the German minorities
    in countries such as Poland or Czechoslovakia that wouldnt have involved repatriating them back to Germany ?

    New facts doesn't automatically mean the decision was wrong.
     
  12. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    Did I say anywhere whether it was a Good Thing or a Bad Thing? All I said was that removing a population segment based on ethnicity whatever the justification is Ethnical Cleansing.

    As a side note, it just surfaced in my mind that Stalin had packed off the German population settled by Catherine II in the lower Volga region to Khazakstan; these were given the right to migrate to Germany somewhat after the Wall came down, Lebach will know more about this but I remember reading that most spoke little or no German at all.
     
  13. Gerard

    Gerard Seelow/Prora

    Za, I have a question for you:

    Since the problems created by German minorities in other countries before WW2 has been noted, and the 1945 mindset was different from today,
    do you have any suggestions for how to deal with the German minorities
    in countries such as Poland or Czechoslovakia that wouldnt have involved repatriating them back to Germany ?

    New facts doesn't automatically mean the decision was wrong.
    Martin, whilst the decision taken at Potsdam to repatriate all German-Speaking peoples from countries such as Czechoslovakia and Poland was supposed to be "Orderly and Humane". In reality it was anything but. The official estimate of deaths stands at 2.2 million, but its nearly impossible to come up with an accurate figure. Given that 2.2 million died in what was supposedly an "orderly and humane", I don't think that many of the people organising the transfer organised it in the spirit that was meant at Potsdam!

    This is not trying to put blame on anyone but those 2.2 million were also victims. Maybe you feel they deserved it and maybe a lot did. But a lot of these were also women and children and they deserve to be recognised as victims of the war also.

    Instances such as the Usti Massacre and the Brno Death March are examples of what happened to these people.
     
  14. Did I say anywhere whether it was a Good Thing or a Bad Thing? All I said was that removing a population segment based on ethnicity whatever the justification is Ethnical Cleansing.

    As a side note, it just surfaced in my mind that Stalin had packed off the German population settled by Catherine II in the lower Volga region to Khazakstan; these were given the right to migrate to Germany somewhat after the Wall came down, Lebach will know more about this but I remember reading that most spoke little or no German at all.

    I got a plenty of pals, so called "Russland-Deutsche" (Russia-Germans). their ancestors were german as you still can guess from their names: Eduard Schönberger, Paul Bauer, Andreas Schwabauer, Alexander Rommel (no joke). but besides of their names, they were nothing but foreigners when they arived here: no family no friends no home. they often describe their problem like that: "in Russia, we were the Germans, but here we are the Russians."

    I dont really know how the history of their familys is like in detail. all that I know is that the most of them emigrated app. 300 years ago to the "Krim" in order to settle there and use the soil as farmland. but there has always been hostility between the different ethnia, even in their generation, as I was often told by my mates.

    whatever.....maybe Alex (we sometimes nickname him: wüstenfuchs ;)) could give me some further detailed information or even write something himself. i´ll ask him when i´m home next weekend.
     
  15. Za Rodinu

    Za Rodinu Hot air manufacturer

    Thanks, Lebach!

    If I'm not mistaken Rommel is a Polish surname, one of the many adopted by the Prussian Junkers. Another famous example is Erich von Lewinski gen. von Manstein.
     

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