Devastation of the Reich -
At Yalta in the Crimea, Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin met to decide the fate of Europe and in their joint statement solemnly declared:
"It is not our purpose to destroy the people of Germany."
Again at Potsdam, the representatives of the Big Three met and intheir joint Declaration, signed by Messrs. Stalin, Truman, and Attlee, officially proclaimed:
"It is not the intention of the Allies to destroy or enslave the German
Despite these and other assurances, the Potsdam decisions, as we at first interpreted them, meant throwing the German people on their own, with outside assistance prohibited, after the necessary means
for their survival had been destroyed. This could have but one result: to blot out Germany and the German people.
The life of every nation is supported by three main pillars: land (all natural resources), labor (both brawn and brains), and capital (plants and equipment). Break down any one of these and the nation
is plunged into catastrophe. We have been guilty of pulling down all three in Germany.
The war started the process by destroying the flower of German manpower, shattering cities, factories, railroads, and impoverishing the soil by a five year cessation of fertilizer production. And an equally oppressive war has been waged against the German people since their unconditional surrender. The supporting power of the land has been undermined by vital territorial losses followed by overcrowding caused by the influx of millions of Germans expelled
into the shrunken Reich from the lost areas and from Czechoslovakia, and Poland. Industrial capital resources have been further diminished by loss of all production facilities in the territories taken by the conquerors and by a gigantic program of sacking politely known as "deindustrialization" and "reparations in kind." The working force had been decimated by the enslavement of millions, the throwing of other millions out of posts of responsibility through "denazification," and weakened by undernourishment which causes workmen to fall at their posts of duty. Even the German race itself has been attacked by a program of mass violation of Germany's
unconditionally surrendered motherhood. In consequence, Germany lies prostrate and her people famish. After
they began to die en masse, it was finally decided that the importation of some food would be necessary - unfortunately barely enough to keep the great masses of people in the twilight zone between life and death. Their agonies and despair have been perpetuated at the maximum of human capacity.
I am gonna add more articles in this thread , The first installment is here -
1) WAR DEVASTATION
Devastation of the Reich by total warfare was alone enough to cast serious doubt on
Germany's postwar ability to survive.
Never before in history have the life-sustaining resources of a nation been so
thoroughly demolished. Returning from victory in Europe, General Bradley declared,
"I can tell you that Germany has been destroyed utterly and completely."
The demand for unconditional surrender had forced the desperate Germans to fight
to the bitter end, until their cities had been pulverized into death-ridden rubble and
their factories, railroads, canals, dams, power installations, communications,
buildings, homes - all their exposed facilities - had been converted into heaps of
twisted, smouldering ruins.
Allied fervor to destroy everything German had been expressed by General
Eisenhower with the opening of the Ruhr drive. "Our primary purpose," he declared,
"is destruction of as many Germans as possible. I expect to destroy every German
west of the Rhine and within that area in which we are attacking."
Allied capacity to destroy became overwhelming after the American industrial
colossus had been converted from peace-time to war production. American output
soon surpassed that of all other belligerents in the war combined and became twice
as great as the capacity of the doomed Axis.
Stunned by American power, Hermann Göring confessed to his Nuremberg prison
guards: "The industrial genius of America is something of which no one dreamed."
A glimpse of America's smashing force when devoted to the grim business of mass
production of death and destruction is provided by the following description written
by a front line war correspondent:
"A cataclysmic blast of exploding, splintering steel rent the earth before us and it
seemed like the world was coming to an end.
"The Americans were blasting out a path for a forward drive.
"Man and beast shuddered in their tracks. Whole towns were disintegrating. Life
seemed to disappear from the scene. It was the most terrifying destructive force of
warfare Germany has ever seen. And it was a symbol of what was to come as the
U.S. 1st Army unloosed this shattering blow within the borders of Germany.
"For an hour and a half more than 2,000 bombers and hundreds of guns pounded the
German countryside, making the earth dance before this mighty man-made force.
When the heavies and mediums were not making the earth quake for miles around,
our massed artillery was giving them hell out there. They were firing at an average
rate of one round every 15 seconds, blasting every conceivable obstacle in our path.
Minefields went up as though touched off by an electric switch...
"In the center of that frightful scene, the Germans were entrenched as a 'human
wall.' They were dug in foxholes and inside houses of 'fortified towns.' Many died
without knowing what had hit them.
"Having seen brave men and wild beasts crack as they do sometimes in the grip of a
terrible earthquake, I could have sworn there would be no opposition when the zero
"Yet, when our tanks and doughboys went over the top after the barrage, as in the
battle of Verdun, there were Germans still alive and they fought us with
Great though it was, the destruction resulting from ground fighting pales in
comparison with that caused by our gigantic air raids. The two atom bombs dropped
on Japan may have been more dramatic, but they could hardly have been more
destructive than the millions of phosphorous, fire, and "blockbuster" bombs dropped
on Germany. Near the end we were using 11-tonners which crews said caused their
planes to bounce up over 500 feet when the huge 25-foot missiles were released,
sending up "a tremendous pall of black smoke and a fountain of debris" which
"dwarfed the terrific explosions of the six-ton 'earthquake' bombs."
During the war, more bombs by weight were dropped on Berlin alone than were
released over the whole of England. So great was the ruin that General Eisenhower
was constrained to say:
"I have seen many great engineering jobs during the war - such as the clearing of
the port of Cherbourg - but I just wouldn't know where to begin to rebuild
An American writer, among the first group of correspondents allowed to spend more
than 24 hours in the smashed metropolis, wrote:
"The capital of the Third Reich is a heap of gaunt, burned-out, flame-seared
buildings. It is a desert of a hundred thousand dunes made up of brick and powdered
masonry. Over this hangs the pungent stench of death . . . It is impossible to
exaggerate in describing the destruction . . . Downtown Berlin looks like no thing
man could have contrived. Riding down the famous Frankfurter Allee, I did not see
a single building where you could have set up a business of even selling apples."
All German cities above 50,000 population and many smaller ones were from 50 to
80 per cent destroyed. Dresden, as large as Pittsburgh, was wiped out and nearly all
of its 620,000 inhabitants buried under the ruins. Cologne, with a population of
750,000, was turned into a gigantic wasteland. Hamburg, with its 1,150,000 people,
was blasted by huge attacks, in one of which the flames rolled a mile into the sky and
roasted alive hundreds of thousands of civilians in street temperatures of a thousand
degrees. Frankfurt-on-Main, a city of 500,000, was reduced to a mass of rubble. All
cities and industrial areas, such as the Ruhr and Saar regions, were laid waste.
The story of Kassel typifies the tragedy which befell the others:
"Three hundred times the people of Kassel ran terrified to their air-raid shelters as
giant British and American planes dropped their bombs. Nearly 10,000 were killed
in the first terrible bombing, the night of October 22, 1943. That was largely an
incendiary attack, which set the whole center of the city afire. Thousands were
killed in their air-shelters by the gas fumes from great piles of burning coal, never
knowing why they felt sleepy, never awakening.
"From that night on they never knew when; they just knew they were doomed.
Sometimes they got only a few bombs; often raiding parties which couldn't reach
objectives farther east around Berlin picked Kassel on the way home.
"Occasionally swarms of planes went directly overhead and nothing happened;
other times they went overhead, and when the people of Kassel thought they were
going on eastward, they wheeled around and came back to drop their powerful tons
"They got so they knew all the tricks, those that remained in Kassel. Steadily their
town was beaten down upon their heads
. . . Less than 15,000 of their 65,000 homes remained livable. They learned how to
dig in, to escape the coal fumes, the fires. Somehow, I thought it was with just a
touch of pride that the Burgomeister said, 'And then our latest raid, March 8 and 9,
1945. It was by far the biggest. Perhaps a thousand big bombers, one of the biggest
raids in all Germany; and we lost very few killed - less than 100.'
"'And then, just before Easter, we heard the American armies were coming and
wanted to make Kassel an open city,' said Helga Aspen, a pretty blond girl who
stayed through it all. 'But,' she added bitterly, 'the Fuehrerhauptquartier (Himmler)
gave orders to defend to the last man.'
"And so Kassel, beaten by 300 air-raids, must know the crashing of American
artillery fire. They gathered about 6,000 civilians in a deep bunker in the center of
town and waited - as the rather inept German defense units gradually were driven
"So, on April 4, 1945, Kassel surrendered, not more than 15,000 of its 250,000 still
in the the city and living. Thousands lay buried under the countless tons of brick
and mortar and twisted steel that had been dwellings and stores and factories.
"That was a year ago and it's no exaggeration to say that they are still dazed. Only a
few have snapped out of their stupor to become real leaders. It is not uncommon to
see a person burst into helpless tears, if the conversation turns to recounting the war
This wholesale destruction of the cities and production facilities of the most highly
industrialized nation in Europe was successful from a strictly military point of view;
however, it was also an attack against the livelihood of millions of workers, for the
wrecking of factories and machines is also destruction of jobs, the basic means of
Some of Germany's jobless millions have found temporary employment in clearing
rubble and similar work. But genuine reconstruction is impossible without
production of vast amounts of building materials and new equipment, neither of
which can be produced in Germany today, because the necessary facilities no longer
exist. It takes factories and machines Germany lacks to build the factories and
machines Germany needs.
To get the German economy off this dead center demands external assistance. And
meanwhile the people, unable to produce the necessities of life for themselves, must
either be allowed to die in masses or be given outside help until recovery has gone
far enough to enable them once more to take care of themselves.
 Associated Press, New York, June 3, 1945
 J. Kingsbury Smith, Paris, Feb. 24, 1945, [INS]
 Cf. address by Donald M. Nelson, Chr. U.S. Production Board, Toronto, Canada. July 8, 1943;
James D. White, Chicago Daily News [AP], May 7, 1945; and Chicago Sunday Tribune, Sept. 22,
1946, reporting statement by Troyer S. Anderson, War Dept. Historian.
 Henry T. Gorrell [UP], Chicago Daily News, Nov. 17, 1944
 Associated Press, London, June 11, 1945
 Eddie Gilmore [AP], Berlin, June 9, 1945
 United Press, London, Feb. 14, 1945 and Associated Press, London, March 5, 1945
 Associated Press, London, March 24, 1945
 Jack Bell, Chicago Daily News Foreign Service, Kassel, Germany, May 15, 1946.
2) EXTERMINATION BY OVERCROWDING
Germany's living space, even in 1937, was small for her heavy
population and afforded important natural resources only in the form
of farm lands and deposits of coal and potash. Her agricultural lands
have been overworked by intensive cultivation for 1,000 to 2,000
years and her soil has been starved for fertilizer during and since the
recent war. Even when plenty of fertilizer was available and her
territory was intact, Germany was never able to produce more than
80 per cent of the food and other farm products needed to meet her
The rest had to be imported in exchange for coal and manufactured
As her agricultural lands became overcrowded, Germany had
resorted to manufacturing. By importing iron ore and exploiting her
coal and potash resources to the utmost, she had built up the world's
second largest steel and chemical industries which, in turn, formed
the "workshop of Europe," raised the general European standard of
living, and provided direct or indirect support for fully two thirds of
her own population.
On account of destruction by total warfare and deliberate Allied
policy, these industrial resources are now largely wiped out. Without
them, over half of the German workers must resort to the soil as their
only other means of life. Under the circumstances it is extremely
doubtful that the land, even if all held in 1937 were left intact, could
support the huge, now jobless, industrial population on even the
barest subsistence level.
Without waiting to see, Germany's conquerors have ruthlessly
stripped her of lands constituting 28 per cent of her living space,
producing an even higher proportion of her food, and containing two
of her three principal coal regions. To make matters still worse, they
are expelling into the remaining Reich millions of Germans from the
lost provinces, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and elsewhere; are
coddling a large population of "displaced persons" within stricken
Germany; and, in the case of the Russians and French, are
maintaining large armies of occupation which live off the land. Both
the "displaced persons" and these occupation forces enjoy priority
over the Germans by being able to make requisitions against them for
whatever food and other items they need in order to live in
comparative ease and luxury. The deplorable situation created by
these actions ean well be imagined.
The Atlantic Charter had promised:
"No aggrandizement." - "No territorial changes that do not accord
with the freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned." - "the
right of all peoples to choose the form of govemment under which
they live." - "To all nations the means of dwelling in safety within their
own borders." - "A peace . . . which will afford assurance that all men
in all lands may live out their lives in freedom from fear and want."
In their Yalta statement, the Big Three reaffirm their "faith in the
principles of the Atlantic Charter" and say they uphold "the right of all
people to choose the form of government under which they live." Yet
in the same pronouncement they grant Russia the eastern half of
Poland and as compensation promise the Poles "substantial
accessions of territory" in eastern Germany - all without regard to
"the wishes of the peoples concerned," - "freely expressed" or
Although Yalta prescribes that the exact amount of such territory
Poland is to receive must await final adjudication at the peace
conferenee, Russia at Potsdam confronted her two western allies with
a territorial fait accompli. She had taken a third of East Prussia as her
own permanent acquisition and had placed her Polish puppet in
possession of all other German territory east of the Oder and Neisse
Rivers. Even the drastic Morgenthau Plan had called for ceding
Poland only the part of East Prussia not taken by Russia and the
Upper Silesian coal and industrial region. But in addition to these
areas, Poland had now possessed herself of German Posen, nearly all
of Pomerania and Lower Silesia, and the eastern part of Brandenburg
- the best part of the Reich's breadbasket. In urging her two allies to
accept these acquisitions as permanent, Russia argued that so many
German inhabitants had fled when the Red armies invaded that to get
the regions back into production would require their incorporation
into the Russian and Polish economies along the lines already
Russia's seizure of Koenigsberg and adjacent East Prussian territory
was accepted at Potsdam and has since gone unopposed. Renamed
Kaliningrad, the former East Prussian capital has been developed into
a prized warm water port for the Soviet Union, most of the German
inhabitants have been ousted, and the whole region has been
But concerning German lands held by Poland, Potsdam decides that
"the final delimitation of the western frontier of Poland should await
the peace settlement"; however, it permits the territories to be held
meanwhile "under the administration of the Polish state." Apparently
looking upon this arrangement as tantamount to de facto recognition
of her title to the regions, Poland has proceeded to dispossess and
drive out the millions of German inhabitants, and to replace them
Although Moscow had led Poland to believe that she could keep the
German provinces in question, German Communists with Soviet
backing early in 1946 started hinting to the Germans that all or part of
the lands might be returned and Poland herself partitioned again
between Russia and Germany, if the Reich would accept
communization and membership in the Soviet Union. Marshall
Zhukov himself had made such a suggestion to German Communists
in April and in July Molotov at Paris had lent his tacit support when,
to the consternation of his western allies, he came out boldly for a
territorially unified, centralized strong Reich. He specifically opposed
any territorial amputations in the west and although silent on the
subject, permitted the inference that some or all of the eastern
territories might be returned. The coup came as a discomforting
surprise especially to France and the United States, whose "tough
peace" programs which they had assumed met with hearty Russian
approval, called for severe amputations of the Reich. It became plain
that Russia approved the programs only as long as her western
friends would put them forward and thereby permanently alienate
the German people.
Finally realizing that we must meet the Russian bid for German
sympathy and support, Mr. Byrnes at Stuttgart made it plain to the
Germans that, while the United States will continue to support
Poland's claim to some German territory, it does not necessarily
consider the western Polish frontier to be permanently fixed at the
Oder River. His object was clearly to place the United States in a
position to match any offer the Russians might make to return to the
Germans all or part of their lost eastern territory. Communist
inspired Polish reaction to the Byrnes statement was immediate and
bitter. The day after it was given crowds with clenched fists waving
milled about in front of the Warsaw residence of the American
Ambassador shouting, "Down with the defenders of Germany!" A
spokesman of the Polish puppet government publicly warned that
Poland "will fight" if any attempt is made to move her western
frontier east of the Oder. A little later Stalin declared that he
considers Poland's present frontiers permanent. With the situation
thus stalemated awaiting the peace settlement, Poland remains in
what may easily become permanent possession of the disputed areas.
France, meanwhile, had waged a bitter fight to deprive Germany of
vital western areas. Insisting that the Reich must be permanently
weakened by economic and political dismemberment, she demanded
that the Ruhr be detached and internationalized, that the Rhineland
be turned into an autonomous state, and that she be allowed to annex
the rich Saar coal and industrial regions. Placing settlement of these
questions and her exorbitant reparation claims above all bilateral
agreements and alliances, she attempted to force the issue by blocking
all Allied attempts to treat Germany as an economic whole.
Prior to the Molotov coup at Paris, France had been supported in her
territorial claims against Germany by French Communists with
Moscow backing. But just as she was making her strongest appeal for
Allied approval of their severe plans for western Germany, Molotov
suddenly abandoned her and made his unexpected bid for German
territorial unity and support. Rejecting outright the proposed
internationalization of the Ruhr and, by implication, French
annexation of the Saar, he quoted from Stalin's speech of November
2, 1942, in which he had said that it is "just as impossible to destroy
Germany as to destroy Russia." Opposing any "alamode" plans to
dismember or pastoralize the Reich, or to turn it into a federation or
confederation of small states, as had been proposed, he demanded
four-power control and administration of the Ruhr.
Despite this stinging Russian rejection of territorial changes in
western Germany, the United States, in exchange for a French
promise to cease blocking treatment of Germany as an economic
whole, promised to back French claims to the Saar which France
thereupon began to enlarge by annexing adjoining areas. But at
Stuttgart, Mr. Byrnes, after repeating the promise to support the
French claim to the Saar, followed Mr. Molotov's example and
opposed detachment of the Ruhr and Rhineland. His stand,
supported by both Russia and Britain, will undoubtedly force
substantial moderation in future French claims.
Byrnes declared that apart from the Saar, and the eastern territories
to go to Russia and to Poland as decided at the peace conference, "the
United States will not support any encroachment on territory which is
indisputably German or any division of Germany which is not
genuinely desired by the people concerned. So far as the United States
is aware the people of the Ruhr and the Rhineland desire to remain
united with the rest of Germany. And the United States will not
oppose their desire."
With the exceptions noted, Mr. Byrnes, here with telling effect,
applied to Germany the principles of the Atlantic Charter. There
should be no exceptions. If these principles apply to the Ruhr and
Rhineland, as they do, they apply with equal force to the Saar and to
German territories east of the Oder-Neisse line. Such principles
cannot be used merely as convenient trumps in the sordid game of
power politics without convincing the world, including the Germans,
that our stand is unprincipled, inherently contradictory, and
prejudiced, that in consequence they are being unjustly deprived of
territory vital to their very existence.
The Germans have long suffered from acute overpopulation. In
earlier years they sought relief in colonies and heavy emigration,
which incidentally brought us the large German element in our own
population. Later, they resorted to intensive industrialization. After
World War I, they were stripped of their colonies, emigration was
impeded by barriers such as immigration quotas, and their homeland
was reduced from 208,830 to 181,699 square miles. Following World
War II, emigration has been entirely prohibited, and all the Germans
in Europe are being jammed into a homeland further slashed to only
133,000 square miles.
Although Germany's population is half as large as our own, her
territory in 1937 was only one sixteenth as large as ours, or about
equal to the combined areas of Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, and
Pennsylvania. Since the present losses to Poland, Russia, and France
subtract an area as large as Pennsylvania, they mean that the 70
million Germans are being crammed into a territory no larger than
Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio.
Imagine trying to force half the people of the United States into these
three states with their cities, factories, railways, and, other
production facilities demolished!
The resultant population compression is tremendous. Thinking
people in France are justly worried that it will bring another violation
of their territory impelled by millions of desperate Germans faced by
extermination through overcrowding.
Diplomacy which creates such powder kegs is singularly lacking in
statesmanship and humanity. It makes sense only in terms of Soviet
Mass Expulsions of Outside Germans into the Shrunken Reich
The forced exodus of Germans from the lost German territories and
elsewhere in eastem Europe constitutes one of the blackest pages of
history. Potsdam gives its permission by saying that the "transfer to
Germany of German populations, or elements thereof, remaining in
Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Hungary, will have to be undertaken."
However it adds that "any transfers that take place should be effected
in an orderly and humane manner."
Some 15 million people are victimized by this decree: a half million
from Hungary, nearly three million from Czechoslovakia, and most of
the rest from the German territories taken by Russia and Poland.
Potsdam calls for annulment of all Nazi laws which established
discrimination on grounds of race and declares: "No such
discrimination, whether legal, administrative or otherwise, shall be
tolerated." Yet these forced migrations of German populations are
predicated squarely on rank racial discrimination. The people
affected are mostly wives and children of simple peasants, workers,
and artisans whose families have lived for centuries in the homes
from which they have now been ejected, and whose only offense is
their German blood. How "orderly and humane" their banishment
has been is now a matter of record.
Winston Churchill was not exaggerating when, in referring to the
expulsions some three months after V-E Day, he informed the House
"It isn't impossible that a tragedy on a prodigious scale is imposing
itself behind the iron curtain which presently divides Europe."
The conservative newletter, REVIEW OF WORLD AFFAIRS, quotes as
follows from a confidential memorandum prepared by an eminent
"Since the end of the war about 3,000,000 people, mostly women and
children and overaged men, have been killed in eastern Germany and
south-eastern Europe; about 15,000,000 people have been deported
or had to flee from their homesteads and are on the road. About 25
per cent of these people, over 3,000,000, have perished. About
4,000,000 men and women have been deported to eastern Europe
and Russia as slaves. ... It seems that the elimination of the German
population of eastern Europe - at least 15,000,000 people - was
planned in accordance with decisions made at Yalta. Churchill had
said to Mikolajczyk when the latter protested during the negotiations
at Moscow against forcing Poland to incorporate eastern Germany:
'Don't mind the five or more million Germans. Stalin will see to them.
You will have not trouble with them: they will cease to exist.'"
Dr. Lawrence Meyer, executive secretary of the Lutheran Church,
Missouri Synod, after a tour of Germany stated:
"About 16,000,000 German refugees east of the Oder are being
deported from their homes. It has been estimated that already
10,000,000 have been driven out. The human tragedy and suffering
caused by this 'Volkswanderung' are unparalleled in history. Hunger,
cold, sickness, and death is the lot of millions. An authentic eyewitness
report of the physical wretchedness of most of the refugees is
pictured in the following:
"A !arge barge is slowly being towed across the Oder River. In it, lying
on straw, are 300 children ranging from 2 to 14 years of age. There is
hardly a sign of life in the whole group. Their hollow eyes, their
swollen bellies, knees, and feet are telltale signs of starvation. These
are merely the vanguard of hundreds of thousands - millions of
homeless, shattered, hungry, sick, helpless, hopeless human beings
fleeing westward - west of the Oder and Neisse Rivers.
"A trust in God - in his goodness and mercy - these are the only hope
of Germany today. And thank God in many there is still faith in God
against which the gates of hell have stormed in vain during the past
In describing the expulsions in Poland and Czechoslovakia, Russian
officers told Chicago Daily News correspondents:
"The Poles have cleaned out all the Germans as far west as the Oder
River, and now all that property is for any Poles who want it.
"The Czechs have taken care of the Germans in Sudetenland in their
own way - and it's not pretty. They round them up, with only what
they can carry, and start them moving."
Upon returning to his post as professor of political science at the
University of Michigan, after serving 14 months as director of AMG's
regional government coordinating office, Dr. James K. Pollock, in
August, 1946, said most of the 2-1/4 million expellees from Hungary
and Sudetenland are old women and children. He said:
"The Germans we are getting are mostly from the Sudetenland or
Germans whose families had been living in Hungary for some 500
years. They come in perfectly frightful condition. They even took the
women's wedding rings before they left. In many cases they have no
clothes except those they are wearing."
An officer would call at the door of the victims and order them to
leave their home within a few hours, permitting them to take along 30
to 100 lbs. of luggage containing nothing of value which might help
them in making a new start elsewhere. The property forcibly left
behind would be confiscated by the state. Any able-bodied men found
would be hustled off to slavery. The others would then start their
perilous hegira to overcrowded Germany wholly without protection of
law, subjected to every conceivable abuse, including robbery,
beatings, rape and murder.
A dispatch in December, 1945, paints a picture of the plight of the
exiles in the new Poland, where hundreds of thousands had been
ousted from their homes and left to wander where they would.
Former German cities like Breslau are described as almost
depopulated of Germans, with Poles taking their place. The dispatch
goes on to say:
"Hundreds of thousands of persons in Poland are constantly on the
move, restlessly seeking a spot where they can grub a living out of the
war raged land. In every rail station and junction men, women, and
children await transport. Clusters of human beings, almost hidden
under loads of parcels and cans and other remnants of what must
have been their homes, wait along the roads or in blasted villages for
any transport that will carry them somewhere else. Life with its birth
and death continues even in these nomadic streams and everywhere
you see womenfold tending their sick or nursing babies."
An eye-witness report of the arrival in Berlin of a train which had left
Poland with exacly 1,000 refugees aboard reads:
"Nine hundred and nine men, women, and children dragged
themselves and their luggage from a Russian railway train at Leherte
station today, after 11 days travelling in boxcars from Poland.
"Red Army soldiers lifted 91 corpses from the train, while relatives
shrieked and sobbed as their bodies were piled in American lendlease
trucks and driven off for internment in a pit near a
The refugee train was like a macabre Noah's ark. Every car was
jammed with Germans . . . The families carry all their earthly
belongings in sacks, bags, and tin trunks. . . Nursing infants suffer the
most, as their mothers are unable to feed them, and frequently go
insane as they watch their offspring slowly die before their eyes.
Today four screaming, violently insane mothers were bound with
rope to prevent them from clawing other passengers.
"'Many women try to carry off their dead babies with them,' a Russian
railway official said. 'We search the bundles whenever we discover a
weeping woman, to make sure she is not carrying an infant corpse
New York Daily News correspondent Donald Mackenzie likewise
reports from Berlin:
"In the windswept courtyard of the Stettiner Bahnhof, a cohort of
German refugees, part of 12,000,000 to 19,000,000 dispossessed in
East Prussia and Silesia, sat in groups under a driving rain and told
the story of their miserable pilgrimage, during which more than 25
per cent died by the roadside and the remainder were so starved they
scarcely had strength to walk.
"Filthy, emaciated, and carrying their few remaining possessions
wrapped in bits of cloth they shrank away crouching when one
approached them in the railway terminal, expecting to be beaten or
robbed or worse. That is what they have become accustomed to
"A nurse from Stettin, a young, good-looking blond, told how her
father had been stabbed to death by Russian soldiers who, after
raping her mother and sister, tried to break into her own room. She
escaped and hid in a haystack with four other women for 4 days . . .
"On the train to Berlin she was pillaged once by Russian troops and
twice by Poles. . . Women who resisted were shot dead, she said, and
on one occasion she saw a guard take an infant by the legs and crush
its skull against a post because the child cried while the guard was
raping its mother.
"An old peasant from Silesia said . . . victims were robbed of
everything they had, even their shoes. Infants were robbed of their
swaddling clothes so that they froze to death. All the healthy girls and
women, even those 65 years of age were raped in the train and then
robbed, the peasant said."
Precedent for these inhuman expulsions was set long before Potsdam
in Romania where, according to a diplomatic report from Bucharest,
520,000 Romanian citizens of German ancestry, men between the
ages of 17 and 45 and women between 18 and 30, were rounded up
like slaves and deported to Soviet Russia. The document said "there
were heart-rending scenes and many preferred suicide to an
unknown fate in Soviet Russia."
The United States had made its own direct contribution by ousting
more than 16,000 people of German extraction from Latin American
countries, obtaining permission to do so by pressure of various kinds
applied from Washington, extraditing them without trial to this
country, holding them here in concentration camps incommunicado
and still without trial, and finally deporting them out of this
hemisphere where many of them have been impressed into slavery by
England and France.
These wholesale expulsions of native populations are as
reprehensible as anything the Nazis are accused of doing, and have
caused deep resentment among all classes of Germans. Had America
kept her skirts clean, and especially if she had denounced them, as
she should have done, German respect for us would have soared. As
matters stand, Germans blame us almost as much as the Russians and
Poles. Our hands, too, are stained with the blood of millions of
innocent victims of this savage, thoroughly un-American program.
Apart from the moral aspects of the matter, the dumping of all these
millions of expropriated, helpless, people into what remains of
wrecked Germany piles chaos upon chaos and helps convert the
entire German nation into one vast Belsen or Buchenwald.
 Karl Brandt, "The Rehabilitation of Germany," address Oct. 11, 1944, Chicago
Council of Foreign Relations.
 Brought out by U.S. Secretary of State Byrnes in speech at Stuttgart, Germany,
Sept. 6, 1946.
 Hal Foust, Berlin, July 14, 1946, Chicago Tribune Press Service.
 August 16, 1945, as reported by E.R. Noderer, Chicago Tribune Press Service.
 Quoted by Sen. Homer Capehart in speech before U.S. Senate, Feb. 5, 1946.
 Same source as No. 5.
 Statement to press conference August 22, 1946, in Washington, D.C., as reported
by John Fisher, Chicago Tribune Press Service.
 Chicago Tribune Press Service, Stockholm, Sweden, Dec. 13, 1945.
 Henry Wales, Berlin, Nov. 18, 1945, Chicago Tribune Press Service.
 Congressional Record, Dec. 4, 1945, p. 11554, and New York Daily News,
October 8, 1945.
 Chicago Herald American, April 1, 1945, p. 16.
 Chicago Daily Tribune, March 14, 1946.