- May 2008
Absolutely. That's pretty much the central idea of my post. The desire to condemn and punish gave way to a need to bring the Germans (the FRG at least) back into the polity of nations. West Germans would stand point against the 'dangerous and expansionist' Soviets. Notions of 'right' and 'wrong' are perhaps all fine and well when there's nothing to stop you having such convoluted ideas. But the reality is that as soon as exigencies demand it, they will be thrown to the wind. When you think about it, by 1937, all teachers in the Reich were members of the NSDAP, so, in 1946, almost every person with teaching experience should have been standing before a denazification tribunal. But reality states that someone has to teach your young. What do you do?? Also, in 1946, almost every engineer, scientist, administrator etc. etc. had more than likely served the nazi state in one capacity or another. But then they are require to rebuild this nation that you want to stand strong against the Soviets. Their employ is unavoidable. I think the police are simply one example from many!!avon,
Thank-you for your considered and extensive treatment of the subject. When I was over there in the early '70s, my German friends informed me that all of the policemen of that age-group were ex-Nazis. I wasn't shocked. It would have been a, uh, tenure sort of thing, I guessed. But when you think about it, a certain amount of un-blasé-ness is called for in regard to the police.
Sure. I realise your not going to buy all of these, so the ones in bold are the one that I would recommend you consider first.I would like those titles.
Gill Bennett (ed.), The End of the War in Europe 1945, (London, 1996).
Donald Bloxham, Genocide on Trial - War Crimes Trials and the Formation of Holocaust History and Memory, (Oxford, 2001).
Rebecca Boehling, A Question of Priorities – Democratic Reform and Economic Recovery in Postwar Germany, (Oxford, 1996).
Tom Bower, Blind Eye To Murder – Britain, America and the Purging of Nazi Germany – A Pledge Betrayed, (London, 1981).
F. S. V. Donnison, Civil Affairs and Military Government North-West Europe 1944-1946, (London, 1961).
Carolyn Eisenberg, Drawing the Line – The American Decision to Divide Germany, 1944-1949, (Cambridge, 1996).
Mary Fulbrook, Fontana History of Germany, 1918-1990 – The Divided Nation, (London, 1991).
Mary Fulbrook, The Two Germanies, 1945-1990 – Problems of Interpretation, (London, 1992).
Mary Fulbrook (ed.), Twentieth-Century Germany – Politics, Culture and Society 1918-1990, (London, 2001).
Alfred Grosser, tr . Paul Stephenson, Germany in Our Time, (London, 1971).
Jeffrey Herf, Divided Memory – The Nazi Past in the Two Germanies, (Harvard, 1997).
Konrad H. Jarausch, tr. Brandon Hunziker, After Hitler – Recivilizing Germans, 1945-1995, (Oxford, 2006).
David Clay Large, Germans to the Front – West German Rearmament in the Adenauer Era, (University of North Carolina, 1996).
Anthony Mann, Comeback – Germany 1945-1952, (London, 1952).
Anna J. Merritt & Richard L. Merritt, Public Opinion in Occupied Germany: The OMGUS Surveys, 1945-1949, (Urbana, Ill., 1970).
Norman M. Naimark, The Russians in Germany – A History of the Soviet Zone of Occupation, 1945-1949, (Cambridge, 1995).
Nicholas Pronay & Keith Wilson (eds.), The Political Re-education of Germany and Her Allies After World War II, (Beckenham, 1985).
A. J. P. Taylor, The Course of German History, (London, 1961).
Toby Thacker, The End of the Third Reich – Defeat, Denazification & Nuremberg, January 1944 – November 1946, (Stroud, 2006).
If you have access to academic journals, I would recommend the following:
Rolf Badstübner, ‘The Allied Four-power Administration and Sociopolitical Development in Germany’, German History, Vol. 7, No. 1. (Apr., 1989), pp. 19-34.
Peter Baldwin, ‘Social Interpretations of Nazism: Renewing a Tradition’, Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 25, No. 1. (Jan., 1990), pp. 5-27
Paul Betts, ‘The New Fascination with Fascism: The Case of Nazi Modernism’, Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 37, No. 4. (Oct., 2002), pp. 541-558.
Donald Bloxham, ‘The Genocidal Past in Western Germany and the Experience of Occupation, 1945-6’, European History Quarterly, Vol. 34, No. 3, (2004), pp. 305-335.
Donald Bloxham, ‘British war crimes trial policy in Germany, 1945-1957: Implementation and collapse’, Journal of British Studies, Vol. 42, Iss. 1. (Jan., 2003), pp. 91-118.
G. R. Boynton & Gerhard Loewenberg, ‘The Decay of Support for Monarchy and the Hitler Regime in the Federal Republic of Germany’, British Journal of Political Science, Vol. 4, No. 4. (Oct., 1974), pp. 453-488.
Frank Buscher, ‘The Great Fear: The Catholic Church and the Anticipated Radicalization of Expellees and Refugees in Post-War Germany’, German History, Vol. 21, No. 2. (2003), pp. 204-224.
Walter L. Dorn, ‘The Debate Over American Occupation Policy in Germany 1944-1945’, Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 72, No. 4. Dec., 1957), pp. 481-501.
Lewis L. Edinger, ‘Post-Totalitarian Leadership: Elites in The German Federal Republic’, The American Political Science Review, Vol. 54, No. 1. (Mar., 1960), pp. 58-82.
John E. Farquharson, ‘The British Occupation of Germany 1945-6: A Badly Managed Disaster Area?’, German History, Vol. 11, No. 3. (Oct., 1993), pp. 316-338.
Stephen G. Fritz, ‘The NSDAP as Volkspartei? A Look at the Social Basis of the Nazi Voter’, The History Teacher, Vol. 20, No. 3. (May, 1987), pp. 379-399.
Neil Gregor, ‘“Is he still alive or long since dead?”: Loss, absence and remembrance in Nuremberg, 1945-56’, German History, Vol. 21, No. 2. (2003).
Atina Grossman, ‘A Question of Silence: The Rape of German Woman by Occupation Soldiers’, October, Vol. 72, Berlin 1945: War and Rape “Liberators take Liberties”, (Spring, 1995), pp. 42-63.
Jeffrey Herf, ‘Reactionary Modernism: Some Ideological Origins of the Primacy of Politics in the Third Reich’, Theory and Society, Vol. 10, No. 6. (Nov., 1981), pp. 805-832.
John H. Herz, ‘The Fiasco of Denazification in Germany’, Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 63, No. 4. (Dec., 1948), pp. 569-594.
Morris Janowitz, ‘German Reactions to Nazi Atrocities’, The American Journal of Sociology, Vol. 52, No. 2. (Sep., 1946), pp. 141-146.
Jill Jones, ‘Eradicating Nazism from the British Zone of Germany: Early Policy and Practice’, German History, Vol. 8, No. 2. (Jun., 1990), pp. 145-162.
Manfred Messerschmidt, ‘The Wehrmacht and the Volksgemeinschaft’, Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 18, No. 4, Military History. (Oct., 1983), pp. 719-744.
Robert G. Moeller, ‘War Stories: The Search for a Usable Past in the Federal Republic of Germany’, The American Historical Review, Vol. 101, No. 4. (Oct., 1996), pp. 1008-1048.
Moses Moskowitz, ‘The Germans and the Jews: Postwar Report – The Enigma of German Irresponsibility’, Commentary, 2 (1946), pp. 7-14.
Rainer Schulze, ‘Growing Discontent: Relations between Native and Refugee Populations in a Rural District in Western Germany after the Second World War’, German History, Vol. 7, No. 3. (Dec., 1989), pp. 332-349.
Frederick Weil, ‘The Imperfectly Mastered Past: Anti-Semitism in West Germany since the Holocaust’, New German Critique, No. 20, Special Issue 2: Germans and Jews. (Spring – Summer, 1980), pp. 135-153.
(If you don't have access to any of these articles, give me a shout and I'll see if I can work something out to help.)