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Drang Nach Osten (Push to the East) or: “What the Hell Does Dave Emory Mean by ‘The Underground Reich?’ ”

[1]

Pol­ish Volks­deutsche wom­en’s unit

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash dri­ve that can be obtained here. [2] (The flash dri­ve includes the anti-fas­cist books avail­able on this site.)

Updat­ed on 5/22/2013

COMMENT: It’s a good bet that a large per­cent­age of listeners/readers either snort in deri­sion or scratch their heads in bewil­der­ment when we use the term “The Under­ground Reich.” [3] This is not only under­stand­able but, per­haps, to be tak­en for grant­ed. (Readers/listeners who wish to be ground­ed in the infor­ma­tion pre­sent­ed here should be sure to read The Nazis Go Under­ground [4], Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile [5] and The New Ger­many and the Old Nazis [6], all of which are avail­able for free instant down­load on this web­site.)

In this regard, analy­sis is pre­sent­ed in this post which should help to clar­i­fy the mat­ter. We are focus­ing on the activ­i­ties of the Ger­man gov­ern­ment and the “ver­triebene groups”–organizations of eth­nic Ger­mans relo­cat­ed to Ger­many in the wake of the con­clu­sion of hos­til­i­ties in World War II as man­dat­ed by agree­ments forged by the Allies at Yal­ta and Pots­dam.

 

[7]

Pol­ish Volks­deutsche

The main groups of eth­nic Ger­man “expellees” were the Sude­ten Ger­mans (for­mer inhab­i­tants of the Sude­ten­land in Czecho­slo­va­kia) and the Volks­deutsche from Poland. Both groups func­tioned as Fifth Colum­nists [8], aid­ing in a deci­sive way the Ger­man con­quest of Czecho­slo­va­kia and Poland in World War II. (Volks­deutsche is a term gen­er­al­ly applied to eth­nic Ger­mans liv­ing out­side of Ger­many prop­er. This post focus­es pri­mar­i­ly on those in Poland and the for­mer Czecho­slo­va­kia.)

In addi­tion to pro­vid­ing the Third Reich with intel­li­gence vital to the impend­ing con­quest of both coun­tries, the Sude­ten Ger­mans and Volks­deutsche formed as com­bat­ant cadres, flesh­ing out the Nazi bat­tal­ions on the bat­tle­field.

Of greater sig­nif­i­cance in the Allies’ deci­sion to expel both groups from their coun­tries of ori­gin was the piv­otal role the Sude­ten Ger­mans and Volks­deutsche played in the bru­tal exter­mi­na­tion pro­grams real­ized by the Nazis’ in both coun­tries.

Inti­mate­ly famil­iar with the peo­ple and insti­tu­tions cen­tral to civic life in Poland and Czecho­slo­va­kia, both groups fin­gered those slat­ed for death by the Nazis, in addi­tion to enthu­si­as­ti­cal­ly par­tic­i­pat­ing in the liq­ui­da­tions and depor­ta­tions as mem­bers of the SS and col­lab­o­ra­tors of the Gestapo.

 

[9]

Expellee Min­is­ter Eri­ka Stein­bach and her charges

In pass­ing, we should note that the Nazi dec­i­ma­tion of the nations they referred to as “the East­ern Ter­ri­to­ries” was con­duct­ed with an eye to the the­o­ret­i­cal prin­ci­ples of von Clause­witz [10]. Con­sid­er­ing the real­i­ties of what von Clause­witz referred to as “the post­war,” the Third Reich lead­er­ship under­stood that dec­i­mat­ing the pop­u­la­tion, ruin­ing the indus­tri­al infra­struc­ture, loot­ing the liq­uid wealth, scorch­ing the arable land and lev­el­ing res­i­den­tial and gov­ern­men­tal archi­tec­ture of the con­quered lands would leave them in no posi­tion to effec­tive­ly resist occu­pa­tion.

More impor­tant­ly, if the Third Reich were to have their mil­i­tary suc­cess reversed (as was the case), the ruin vis­it­ed upon those coun­tries dur­ing the occu­pa­tion would leave them in a sub­or­di­nate and infe­ri­or posi­tion in the inter­na­tion­al post­war order.

Of para­mount impor­tance in this regard was the Nazi pol­i­cy of exter­mi­nat­ing the intel­li­gentsia of the occu­pied coun­tries. So bru­tal­ly effec­tive was this pro­gram that, with­in sev­er­al months of the Ger­man inva­sion of Poland (for exam­ple), there was almost no one left alive with a col­lege edu­ca­tion! Under such cir­cum­stances, how is one to rebuild a coun­try­side destroyed by mod­ern armies pit­ted against one anoth­er in unre­strained indus­tri­al war­fare?

Although the fail­ures of the Sovi­et-style com­mand econ­o­my cer­tain­ly fur­ther retard­ed the indus­tri­al devel­op­ment of East­ern Europe, the Nazi holo­caust had much to do with keep­ing that part of the world down.

Open­ly and insti­tu­tion­al­ly espous­ing the cause of the Sude­ten Ger­mans, the Pol­ish Volks­deutsche and the oth­er expellees, the Ger­man gov­ern­ment has a min­istry to admin­is­ter their sit­u­a­tion and fur­ther their goals. It is, and always has been, the offi­cial posi­tion of the Ger­man gov­ern­ment that the expul­sion of  Ger­man pop­u­la­tions man­dat­ed by the Yal­ta and Pots­dam agree­ments was wrong. This con­sti­tutes a fun­da­men­tal rejec­tion by the gov­ern­ment of the “new” Ger­many of the peace set­tle­ment of World War II!

Below, we present two arti­cles from the vital­ly impor­tant german-foreign-policy.com newslet­ter, which feeds along the bot­tom of the front page of this web­site. The first sto­ry dis­cuss­es the lat­est exhi­bi­tion staged by the BdV, the League of Expellees. Attend­ed by chan­cel­lor Angela Merkel and endorsed by the new pres­i­dent of Ger­many Joachim Gauck, the exhib­it presents the case of the Volks­deutsche and the Sude­ten Ger­mans. The head of the BdV, Eri­ka Stein­bach, stat­ed that the blame for start­ing World War II [11] belonged to Poland!

The sec­ond excerpt from german-foreign-policy.com doc­u­ments the pro­pri­etary claims being made by right-wing extrem­ists asso­ci­at­ed with the BdV in Poland. They are attempt­ing to real­ize the resti­tu­tion of prop­er­ty in Poland that, they claim, had belonged to the Volks­deutsche.

In an update from May of 2013, we note that the German/Bavarian gov­ern­ment is com­mem­o­rat­ing a “memo­r­i­al day” for the “reset­tled” Sude­ten Ger­mans, in order to sus­tain the polit­i­cal sen­si­tiv­i­ty of the issue for future gen­er­a­tions.

We then exam­ine excerpts from The New Ger­many and the Old Nazis [6]. The first presents part of the Nazi gov­ern­ment-in-exile’s Madrid cir­cu­lar let­ter from 1950, dis­cussing the expellees’ impor­tance to the Under­ground Reich [3] and ana­lyz­ing the future impor­tance of the groups for Ger­man for­eign pol­i­cy.

What we see here is the syn­the­sis of pol­i­cy devel­oped and artic­u­lat­ed by The Under­ground Reich in 1950 with pol­i­cy pur­sued by the “new” Ger­many today. In turn, this pol­i­cy is at one with the activ­i­ties and goals of right-wing extrem­ists in the expellee milieu!

The last excerpts from the T.H. Tetens text doc­u­ment the role of the Sude­ten Ger­mans and the Pol­ish Volks­deutsche in the mil­i­tary con­quest, eth­nic cleans­ing and dec­i­ma­tion of Czecho­slo­va­kia and Poland. Do not fail to rec­og­nize the fun­da­men­tal revi­sion­ist nature of the cur­rent Ger­man gov­ern­men­t’s stance toward the his­to­ry of the Sude­ten Ger­mans and the Volks­deutsche!

Sup­ple­ment­ing this post is, of course, the vol­ume of infor­ma­tion pre­sent­ed on this web­site about the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work, the corporate/economic foun­da­tion of the Under­ground Reich.

“Protest Against Pots­dam”; german-foreign-policy.com;  5/17/2013. [12]

EXCERPT: In the run-up to this week­end’s annu­al “Sude­ten Ger­man Con­ven­tion,” the Bavar­i­an region­al gov­ern­ment has announced the intro­duc­tion of a memo­r­i­al day in com­mem­o­ra­tion of Ger­man reset­tle­ment. Begin­ning 2014, the sec­ond Sun­day in Sep­tem­ber will annu­al­ly be ded­i­cat­ed to the com­mem­o­ra­tion of the Ger­man vic­tims of “flight, expul­sion and depor­ta­tion” as a result of the Sec­ond World War. The des­ig­na­tion of this memo­r­i­al day is one of the Ger­man polit­i­cal estab­lish­men­t’s mea­sures, to seek to embed the notion that the reset­tle­ment was “an injus­tice” in the mind­set of future gen­er­a­tions. Based on this — his­tor­i­cal­ly erro­neous — opin­ion, Ger­many can raise advan­ta­geous polit­i­cal claims vis à vis East­ern and South­east­ern Euro­pean coun­tries. Besides the cre­ation of a memo­r­i­al day, Bavaria is also sup­port­ing, with 20 mil­lion Euros, the estab­lish­ment of a “Sude­ten Ger­man Muse­um” in Munich. The Ger­man Bun­destag has ear­marked anoth­er 10 mil­lion Euros to the project. An expo­si­tion, which could serve as the cen­ter­piece of the muse­um, put the legit­i­ma­cy of the found­ing of Czecho­slo­va­kia into ques­tion, using con­tro­ver­sial quotes from Nazi sources. The Bavar­i­an prime min­is­ter will be hon­ored, with a Sude­ten Ger­man Home­land Asso­ci­a­tion award at Sun­day’s events for his sup­port of the “expellees.”

Memo­r­i­al Day for the Reset­tled

As was announced, last Wednes­day, by the Bavar­i­an state chan­cellery, the gov­ern­ment of Bavaria has decid­ed to declare a state-wide memo­r­i­al day in com­mem­o­ra­tion of Ger­man reset­tle­ment. Begin­ning in 2014, the annu­al memo­r­i­al day in com­mem­o­ra­tion “of Ger­man suf­fer­ing caused by flight, expul­sion and depor­ta­tion” [1] as a result of the Sec­ond World War, will be the sec­ond Sun­day in Sep­tem­ber. This ini­tia­tive has been jubi­lant­ly wel­comed by reset­tle­ment asso­ci­a­tions. Bavaria has always been “exem­plary” toward the “expellees,” declared the Pres­i­dent of the Ger­man League of Expellees (BdV), Eri­ka Steinbach.[2] There is no doubt that the BdV would like to see a sim­i­lar memo­r­i­al day estab­lished nation­wide. Ulti­mate­ly, a “non-par­ti­san con­sen­sus” on this ques­tion must be reached in the Ger­man cap­i­tal, demand­ed BdV Chair­man Bernd Fabritius.[3]

On the Injus­tice of Expul­sion

The memo­r­i­al day’s polit­i­cal thrust can also be sur­mised from its sched­ul­ing, in direct con­nec­tion to the “Home­land Day.” Since 1950, “Home­land Day” has been annu­al­ly com­mem­o­rat­ed by the BdV and oth­er asso­ci­a­tions of the reset­tled as a means of keep­ing the mem­o­ry alive of a Ger­man past in their regions of ori­gin. Orig­i­nal­ly, this had been com­mem­o­rat­ed on the first week­end in August, a delib­er­ate jux­ta­po­si­tion to the date of the sign­ing of the Pots­dam Agree­ments (August 2, 1945). This date was cho­sen in “protest against the deci­sions tak­en at the Pots­dam Con­fer­ence in 1945,” explains the BdV.[4] This is refer­ring to pas­sages in the Pots­dam Agree­ments that legal­ly jus­ti­fy the reset­tle­ment of Ger­mans — as a con­se­quence of Nazi crimes in East­ern and South­east­ern Europe. The gov­ern­ment of Bavaria open­ly aligns itself with this protest. Prime Min­is­ter Horst See­hofer explains that, with this new memo­r­i­al day, “we are send­ing out the mes­sage that expul­sion is and remains an injustice.”[5] The fact that the memo­r­i­al day will not be held on the first week­end in August, but rather in Sep­tem­ber — like the “Home­land Day” — has a prac­ti­cal rea­son. In Bavaria, school sum­mer vaca­tion lasts through­out August, usu­al­ly only end­ing on the sec­ond week­end in Sep­tem­ber. To estab­lish a memo­r­i­al day dur­ing the sum­mer vaca­tion would pre­des­tine it to fiz­zle out with­out effect.

The Younger Gen­er­a­tion

As can be seen in Bavari­a’s prime min­is­ter’s state­ments, the insti­tu­tion of a memo­r­i­al day is also aimed at influ­enc­ing future debates. Until recent­ly, it had always been claimed — for exam­ple in the con­tro­ver­sies sur­round­ing a “Cen­ter against Expul­sions” or the Foun­da­tion Flight, Expul­sion, Rec­on­cil­i­a­tion [6] — that per­son­al sat­is­fac­tion must be giv­en to those who fled or were reset­tled since 1944. This is viewed as nec­es­sary, even though the major­i­ty of those con­cerned have died. The Bavar­i­an prime min­is­ter, on the oth­er hand, even pro­claims that “the mem­o­ry of flight and expul­sion must be kept alive, par­tic­u­lar­ly for the younger generation.”[7] In fact there is an upsurge in gov­ern­ment activ­i­ties around reset­tle­ment in the field of col­lec­tive mem­o­ry poli­cies, because those, who had been reset­tled are either no longer alive or they are very old — and their asso­ci­a­tions, which had kept the mem­o­ry of reset­tle­ment alive, pro­claim­ing it an injus­tice, are steadi­ly los­ing influ­ence, due to their decline in mem­ber­ship. For Prime Min­is­ter See­hofer, the reset­tle­ment must be embed­ded in the mem­o­ry of the “younger gen­er­a­tion,” because it will be they, who “will con­fig­u­rate the Euro­pean house of tomor­row.” The mem­o­ry of reset­tle­ment and its clas­si­fi­ca­tion as “injus­tice,” per­mit Ger­many to uphold its polit­i­cal demands vis à vis East­ern and South­east­ern Euro­pean coun­tries. (german-foreign-policy.com reported.[8])

Total­ly Indif­fer­ent

Plans to estab­lish a “Sude­ten Ger­man Muse­um” in Munich are among the mea­sures of col­lec­tive mem­o­ry, aimed at keep­ing the alleged “injus­tice of the reset­tle­ment” on the Euro­pean agen­da for a long time to come. . . .

 

“Beside the Dead of Auschwitz”; german-foreign-policy.com; 3/21/2012. [13]

EXCERPT: Yes­ter­day the League of Expellees (BdV) opened a new exhi­bi­tion right in the heart of Berlin with the Ger­man Chan­cel­lor in atten­dance. The project com­bines three exhi­bi­tions cre­at­ed by the BdV over the past few years for its “Cen­ter against Expul­sions” Foun­da­tion. This exhi­bi­tion depicts the his­to­ry of “Ger­man eth­nic minori­ties” (deutsche Volks­grup­pen) in numer­ous regions of East­ern Europe and their reset­tle­ment in the Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Ger­many. This pro­vides polit­i­cal sup­port for offi­cial “Deutsch­tum” (Ger­man­dom) activ­i­ties in east­ern and south­east­ern Europe, instru­men­tal­iz­ing Ger­man-speak­ing minori­ties for Berlin’s for­eign pol­i­cy. This is also a man­i­fes­ta­tion of Ger­many’s offi­cial posi­tion con­cern­ing Ger­mans’ reset­tle­ment in the after­math of the Sec­ond World War as “unjust,” which is why the east­ern neigh­bor­ing coun­tries can still be con­sid­ered “guilty.” In its pre­sen­ta­tion of the exhi­bi­tion, the BdV refers to the many years of sup­port from the new Ger­man Pres­i­dent Joachim Gauck. One mem­ber of the sci­en­tif­ic advi­so­ry pan­el of the “Cen­ter against Expul­sions” Foun­da­tion, which uses Gauck­’s name in its pub­lic­i­ty, is a inter­na­tion­al jurist, described in the rightwing press as “asso­ci­at­ed with rightwing extrem­ist cir­cles.”. . .

. . . . “Home­land Sick” com­bines the BdV’s pre­de­ces­sor exhi­bi­tions “Com­pul­so­ry Routes,” “The Called” and “Arrived,” recount­ing the his­to­ries of the Ger­man-speak­ing minori­ties (“deutsche Volks­grup­pen”) in east­ern and south­east­ern Europe from the begin­ning of their migra­tions, their reset­tle­ment dur­ing and fol­low­ing the Sec­ond World War up to their inte­gra­tion in the Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Ger­many. The exhi­bi­tion “The Called” is ded­i­cat­ed to Ger­man­dom in regions of east­ern and south­east­ern Europe, where Ger­many is sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly rein­forc­ing the res­i­dent Ger­man-speak­ing minori­ties. The Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Ger­many uses these minori­ties to enhance its polit­i­cal and eco­nom­ic influ­ence in for­eign coun­tries. (german-foreign-policy.com reported.[1]) The BdV’s “Cen­ter against Expul­sions” Foun­da­tion’s “Com­pul­so­ry Routes” exhi­bi­tion depicts the reset­tle­ment of Ger­mans in the after­math of the Sec­ond World War — inscribed, in accor­dance with inter­na­tion­al law, in the 1945 Pots­dam Agree­ments — as an alleged injus­tice and there­by express­ing the offi­cial West Ger­man posi­tion that the reset­tle­ment had been a crime. This impli­cates that the coun­tries over­run by Nazi Ger­many are “indebt­ed.” Inter­est­ed cir­cles are today still rais­ing demands for repa­ra­tions. . . .

. . . . The Ger­man gov­ern­men­t’s sup­port for the BdV and its exhi­bi­tion projects dis­re­gards the fact that the league and its pres­i­dent have been sharply crit­i­cized for his­tor­i­cal revi­sion­ist dec­la­ra­tions and strong attacks on neigh­bor­ing coun­tries to the east and south­east. For exam­ple, on sev­er­al occa­sions, BdV func­tionar­ies have sug­gest­ed that Poland could share the blame for the begin­ning of the Sec­ond World War.[3] BdV Pres­i­dent Stein­bach came to their defense in the ensu­ing con­tro­ver­sy. . . .

“Pro­pri­etors in Wait­ing”; german-foreign-policy.com; 2/28/2012. [14]

EXCERPT: Extreme rightwing Ger­man mil­i­tants have announced new law­suits against Poland to have for­mer prop­er­ty of “expelled” Ger­mans returned. The new­ly formed “Prop­er­ty Own­ers Asso­ci­a­tion — East (EBO)” announced that it is demand­ing not only the trans­fer of prop­er­ty rights to reset­tled Ger­mans for real estate and build­ings in Poland, but are also demand­ing that a “use com­pen­sa­tion” be paid by the so-called expelling coun­try. Accord­ing to a report broad­cast on Swiss tele­vi­sion, already in the past, the asso­ci­a­tion’s pres­i­dent has forced his way into a house in south­ern Poland, he claimed belonged to him. The asso­ci­a­tion has also announced its inten­tion to wage a polit­i­cal cam­paign this spring in sev­er­al Pol­ish cities. EBO’s pres­i­dent is the nation­al exec­u­tive direc­tor of the extreme rightwing “pro-Deutsch­land” par­ty, affil­i­at­ed with an extreme rightwing splin­ter group of the Ger­man League of Expellees (BdV). Its hon­orary pres­i­dent would like to trans­form a large seg­ment of Pol­ish ter­ri­to­ry into a neu­tral coun­try: “Zen­tropa.” The fact that the Fed­er­al Repub­lic of Ger­many has, since 1949, con­sis­tent­ly declared the reset­tle­ment of Ger­mans “unjust” and the “ques­tion of repa­ra­tions open” is encour­age­ment for the law­suits demand­ing repa­ra­tions for the reset­tled. . . .

The New Ger­many and the Old Nazis by T.H. Tetens; Ran­dom House [HC]; Copy­right 1961 by T.H. Tetens. [6]

COMMENT: The con­tem­po­rary Ger­man gov­ern­ment is pur­su­ing a for­eign pol­i­cy dynam­ic that is the exten­sion of that advo­cat­ed by the Nazi gov­ern­ment in exile in Madrid, as can be seen from the fol­low­ing excerpt. (For dis­cus­sion of Dr. Wern­er Nau­mann, the coup attempt he led in 1953 and the fuehrungsring serv­ing as a shad­ow gov­ern­ment of Ger­many, see the text excerpt in the descrip­tion for the Tetens book.)

EXCERPT  . . . There is lit­tle doubt that the expellees played an impor­tant part in the cal­cu­la­tions of Dr. [Wern­er] Nau­mann and his asso­ciates in Madrid. A secret cir­cu­lar let­ter issued by the Nazi head­quar­ters in Madrid stat­ed: “The mil­lions of expellees must be regard­ed as an impor­tant valu­able trump card in our pol­i­cy toward the restora­tion of Ger­man pow­er . . . The expul­sion of 10 mil­lion racial com­rades was a bless­ing for the Reich. The expellees strength­ened the bio­log­i­cal sub­stance of our race, and from the begin­ning, they became a valu­able asset to our pro­pa­gan­da. The expellees, dis­con­tent­ed with their fate, infused a strong polit­i­cal dynamism in our demands. Very soon, we were able to drown out noisy pro­pa­gan­da about Ger­man ‘crimes’ with our own coun­ter­ac­cu­sa­tion about the heinous mis­deeds com­mit­ted against 10 mil­lion of our racial com­rades. . . . The dis­tress of the refugees has cre­at­ed a com­mon polit­i­cal ground among all Ger­mans, regard­less of polit­i­cal affil­i­a­tion. The demand for the resti­tu­tion of the stolen Ger­man ter­ri­to­ries keeps our agi­ta­tion alive. The mil­i­tant ele­ments among the refugees are work­ing in the best tra­di­tions of Nation­al Social­ism, where­as the broad mass­es of expellees are kept togeth­er in well-dis­ci­plined home­land orga­ni­za­tions . . . The expul­sion of mil­lions of our racial com­rades pro­vides us with a heav­en-sent oppor­tu­ni­ty to exac­er­bate the prob­lem of the bleed­ing bor­der and to ham­mer con­stant­ly for its revi­sion.” (pp. 129–130.)

COMMENT: The fun­da­men­tal revi­sion of his­to­ry inher­ent in the Ger­man pol­i­cy toward the expellees can be seen in the fol­low­ing account of the role of the Sude­ten Ger­mans and Pol­ish Volks­deutsche in the Nazi con­quest and mur­der­ous occu­pa­tion of Czecho­slo­va­kia and Poland.

EXCERPT: . . . The 3,000,000 Sude­ten Ger­mans lived in a tru­ly demo­c­ra­t­ic coun­try and enjoyed the same polit­i­cal, cul­tur­al and social free­doms as all the oth­er cit­i­zens of Czecho­slo­va­kia. Yet 92 per­cent ral­lied behind Hitler, embarked on a pol­i­cy of trea­son and vot­ed “Ein reich, Ein Volk, Ein Fuehrer.” Accord­ing to cap­tured Ger­man doc­u­ments, in 1937, Hitler decid­ed that Czecho­slo­va­kia must be “wiped off the map.” A year lat­er, at the height of the cri­sis, the Sude­ten Ger­mans revolt­ed, help­ing to under­mine the repub­lic and on March 15, 1939, Hitler occu­pied Prague and made the tiny remain­der “a Ger­man pro­tec­torate.” Sub­se­quent­ly, the sude­ten Ger­mans par­tic­i­pat­ed in the “Ger­man­iza­tion” of the coun­try by dri­ving the Czechs and their neigh­bors from their homes and by killing the slav­ic intel­li­gentsia by the thou­sands. Only recent­ly, a con­ser­v­a­tive Catholic paper in Aus­tria print­ed the num­ber of death sen­tences hand­ed down in Prague and Bruenn alone from June 8 to June 21, 1942. Alto­geth­er 340 teach­ers, lawyers, offi­cials and Catholic priests were exe­cut­ed in the short span of two weeks, not count­ing the hun­dreds who found death in the  Gestapo tor­ture cham­bers  and con­cen­tra­tion camps. From 1939 to 1945, sev­er­al hun­dred thou­sand Czechs were mur­dered by the SS. It was for these crimes that the Sude­ten Ger­mans, the chief per­pe­tra­tors of the ter­ror regime were expelled from the soil of Czecho­slo­va­kia. . . . (p.126.)

. . . Orig­i­nal­ly a Slav­ic city, Danzig [now Gdan­sk in Poland] was giv­en to Prus­sia dur­ing the sec­ond par­ti­tion of Poland in 1793. After 1918, the huge port on the Baltic Sea became an inde­pen­dent “Free City” state, admin­is­tered by the League of Nations. Ger­mans and Poles lived side by side under demo­c­ra­t­ic rule. In 1939, Hitler demand­ed anoth­er Anschluss. Accord­ing to the Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung of August 29, 1959, every­thing was fixed for that long-expect­ed Tag. The Ger­man cruis­er Schleswig-Hol­stein, sent by Hitler on a “vis­it of friend­ship” to par­tic­i­pate in the city’s flower fes­ti­val, was anchored in the Danzig har­bor. Ear­ly in the morn­ing of Sep­tem­ber 1, 1939, tens of thou­sands of Hit­lerite Danzigers crowd­ed the roofs to watch the har­bor with field glass­es for a spe­cial kind of “flower fes­ti­val.” At pre­cise­ly 4:45am, with­out a dec­la­ra­tion of war, the Schleswig-Hol­stein opened up with her heavy 28-cen­time­ter guns, pound­ing the for­ti­fi­ca­tions of the near­by Pol­ish penin­su­la West­er­plat­te. At the same time, every­where in the city the Ger­mans arrest­ed their Pol­ish neigh­bors. The victims–men, women and chil­dren were tak­en from their beds, beat­en mer­ci­less­ly in the streets, and round­ed up by a quick­ly orga­nized “emer­gency SS.” The entire police force in Danzig “changed into two Panz­er grenadier reg­i­ments overnight” and start­ed to attack every offi­cial Pol­ish build­ing with its tanks. . . . All Pol­ish schools and insti­tu­tions were closed and the Pol­ish pop­u­la­tion was dri­ven out or shipped to a hasti­ly con­struct­ed con­cen­tra­tion camp. (pp. 126–127.)

. . . Dur­ing World War II, the Pol­ish Gov­ern­ment-in-Exile (non-Com­mu­nist) pub­lished a great deal of infor­ma­tion about the ter­ror and atroc­i­ties com­mit­ted by the Wehrma­cht and SS in close coop­er­a­tion with the Volks­deutsche. The lat­ter, of course, had the most inti­mate knowl­edge of the Pol­ish coun­try and peo­ple and had been engaged long before the war in con­sid­er­able fifth-col­umn activ­i­ties for the Reich. Like the Ger­mans in Danzig, the huge major­i­ty of Volks­deutsche had been fanat­i­cal fol­low­ers of Hitler. They could hard­ly wait for the day when they received orders to make the new Pol­ish land Polen­rein–free of Poles.

A few days before the war, Hitler had giv­en the green light for pity­less mass mur­der, he told his com­mand­ing Gen­er­als: “I have giv­en orders to my Totenkopf for­ma­tions [Death’s-Head SS] for the time being applic­a­ble only in the East to bring unmer­ci­ful and pity­less death on every man, woman and child of the Pol­ish race.”

Thus, Poland was “strick­en from the list of nations,” and the Pol­ish inhab­i­tants were exter­mi­nat­ed by the mil­lions. Gauleit­er Forster announced on Novem­ber 26, 1939: “I have received orders to Ger­man­ize these provinces in the short­est pos­si­ble time . . . In a few years any­thing that can be in any way rem­i­nis­cent of Poland will have dis­ap­peared.”

Accord­ing to a report by the Pol­ish Gov­ern­ment in Exile “the Ger­mans, with the usu­al brutish vul­gar­i­ty, showed their mad hatred of every­thing Pol­ish.” As in Czecho­slo­va­kia, the Pol­ish intelligentsia–the teach­ers, offi­cials, offi­cers, aris­to­crats and priests–were slaugh­tered by the tens of thou­sands. The Volks­deutsche, know­ing every dis­trict and local­i­ty, fur­nished the lists of vic­tims and assist­ed the Gestapo in car­ry­ing out the ini­tial purge. Dur­ing the first few months 12,000,000 Poles were dri­ven from their homes and farms. All prop­er­ty was con­fis­cat­ed and passed into the hands of the Ger­man set­tlers. Mil­lions of able-bod­ied men and women were round­ed up and sent to slave labor camps either in Ger­many or in the con­quered ter­ri­to­ries. Thou­sands of healthy young Pol­ish women were round­ed up and sent to hous­es of pros­ti­tu­tion in Ger­many or to mil­i­tary broth­els behind the front. The rest of “those unfor­tu­nate peo­ple were loaded into cat­tle cars and trans­port­ed to the bad­ly over­crowd­ed Gen­er­al Gov­ern­ment of Poland [the occu­pied rump state] where they were dec­i­mat­ed by star­va­tion and dis­ease.”

. . . Accord­ing to offi­cial Ger­man records, of the 55,000,000 mil­lion vic­tims of World War II, 35,000,000 non­com­bat­ants were killed in East­ern Europe alone as a “result of the effects of war and occu­pa­tion.”

Large groups of Sude­ten Ger­mans and Volks­deutsche in Poland played a vital role in the Hitler holo­caust. They filled the ranks of the SS and fought fanat­i­cal­ly to Ger­man­ize the Slav­ic lands. It was in the light of this record that the Allies decid­ed at Yal­ta and Pots­dam to set the Oder-Neisse line as a final stop to Ger­many’s cen­turies-old Drang nach Osten–push to the East. . . . (pp. 127–129.)