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Resocialization of the former German prisoners of war after their return to East Germany from captivity in the USSR (1945-1949)



seriya History. Political science. Economy. Computer science. 2010. No. 1 (72). Release 13

UDC 943:087

RESOCIALIZATION of the FORMER GERMAN PRISONERS OF WAR AFTER THEIR RETURN TO EAST GERMANY FROM CAPTIVITY In the USSR (1945-1949)

One of relevant tasks of post-war society of Germany was the problem of the fastest resocialization of the former German prisoners of war who came back from the Soviet Union. Consideration of this problem is the purpose of this article. The interpretation presented in it is based on sources which, first of all, documents of the State archive of Germany (Bundesarchiv) are among, in particular materials of funds - the Secretariat Lemanna1 (Sekretariat H. Lehmann), Central office for affairs of the German immigrants (Zentralverwaltung fur deutsche Umsiedler), German management of work and social security (Deutsche Verwaltung fur Arbeit und Sozialfursorge). A role in formation of the offered concept was played by materials of the "Trud I Sotsialnoye Obespecheniye" magazine (Arbeit und Sozialfursorge) for 1946-49

In the years of World War II in the USSR more than two million soldiers and officers of Wehrmacht were taken prisoner. In September, 1945 their repatriation began with the territory of the Soviet Union. The first party consisting of 412,000 sick and disabled was sent home according to the Order of the People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs of the USSR (People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs) "About release of a part of prisoners of war from camps of People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs and special hospitals" 2. "About a sending order home of prisoners of war" 3 their repatriation was defined by camp No. 69 in Frankfurt an der Oder by the directive of People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs.

The Soviet military authorities in Germany (SVAG) and to the German self-government institutions in East Germany had to solve the problems connected with a meeting, transportation, placement and supply of repatriates. The German self-government institutions had to provide to the former prisoners of war of pension, allowances and housing, to organize medical care and hospital treatment, the help at employment, to create special services of search of missing persons. Bodies of social security allocated special group of the repatriates who appeared in a difficult life situation. The prisoners of war who were left without the permanent residence disabled and disabled people belonged to this category. Possibilities of assistance to repatriates were limited

1 Helmut Lehmann (1892-1959) from 1945 to 1946 was the first vice president of the German management of work and social security, the chairman of the central board of National Solidarity charity organization, since 1947 the board member of Merging of free German labor unions directed department of social security and social insurance (AYeIipd Bs^aN&igzogde ips1 Zs^a^egByuIegipd), in 1946-1959 (Rge1eg йе^БсИег SeshegkBsIaLBipS - RySV).
2 The order of People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs of the USSR No. 00955 "About release of a part of prisoners of war from camps of People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs and special hospitals", 10/14.08.1945//Prisoners of war in the USSR. M, 2000. Page 801-802.
3 Directive of People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs of the USSR No. 157 "About a sending order home prisoners of war", 13.09.1945//Russian archive: Great Patriotic War. Foreign prisoners of war of World War II in the USSR. T. 24 (13). M, 1996. Page 368-369.

Voronezh institute of economy and social management

E.V. Riga

Article is devoted to resocialization of the former German prisoners of war after their return to East Germany from captivity in the USSR in the second half of the 1940th. Use of documents of the State archive of Germany (VipSeBagsYu) and also special literature, including in foreign languages, allowed the author to present a role of bodies of the German self-government of East Germany in the course of resocialization of the former prisoners of war.

e-mail: eryazhskih@mail.ru

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a difficult economic situation of post-war time and also lack of accurate communication between the formed bodies of the German self-government of East Germany.

In the Soviet zone of occupation the device of the come-back prisoners of war depended on the Departments of resettlement as a part of Management of commandant's service SVAG created on September 14, 1945 4. In September, 1945 the Central German office for resettlement began to work. Were included in its functions: transportation, placement, supply of immigrants and the repatriated prisoners of war and also the organization of services of search of missing soldiers and officers and creation of camps for the homeless. A part in the course of resocialization of prisoners of war was played by the Central German office of work and social security created according to the order of Glavnonachalstvuyushchy SVAG No. 175. Employment come back from captivity, rendering material support to the needing repatriates, the help to the former prisoners of war at education or retraining, the organization of consultations on family questions belonged to duties of management.

The meeting of the prisoners of war who were coming back from the Soviet Union to East Germany in 1945 was organized badly. A part of repatriates parted from camp No. 69 home independently, a part went to Berlin. In the summer of 1946 reception of the former prisoners of war was ordered. From now on repatriates got from camp No. 69 to the German Gronenfelde camp. Prisoners of war were in it during 24 chasov6. During this time they underwent medical examination. Up to 1948 the number of the prisoners of war needing medical assistance was high. 70% of total number of repatriates had various diseases, and 30% needed stationary pomoshchi7. After medical examination the repatriates were distributed on the groups formed according to the earth or a zone in which they intended vernutsya8. Food was provided to the driving-off prisoners of war. The ration paid off for three days. According to requirements of SVAG and the Central German office for resettlement the standard daily food rate of the former prisoner of war consisted of 600 gr. bread, 100 gr. grain and macaron, 30 gr. meat, 100 gr. fishes, 600 gr. potatoes, 170 gr. cabbage, 170 gr. carrots and other vegetables and also fat, sugar, soli9.

The special role in service of the prisoners of war who came back from the USSR belonged to public charity organization National Solidarity ("Volkssolidaritat"). It made collecting donations and money in their advantage. In the Gronenfelde camp the representatives of National Solidarity distributed clothes, cigarettes, writing-materials, money. This sum in the summer of 1946 was 3 brands, then was increased to 5 marok10, prisoners of war who had no relatives were given out 30 marok11.

Bodies of the German self-government of East Germany referred a part of prisoners of war to category of the homeless. It were repatriates whose families lived before the end of World War II in the territory of Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary. On

4 Activities of the Soviet military commandant's offices for mitigation of consequences of war and the organization of peaceful life in the Soviet zone of occupation of Germany. 1945 — 1949: Sb. documents. M, 2005. Page 37-40.
5 The order of Glavnonachalstvuyushchy SVAG No. 17 "About creation of the German central offices in the territory of the Soviet zone of occupation of Germany", 27.07.1945//For anti-fascist democratic Germany. 1945 — 1949 Sb. documents. M, 1969. Page 107 — 109.
6 Merker P. Das kleine Handbuch fur Heimkehrer. Berlin, 1948. S. 9.
7 Buwert W., Eichler K. Die medizinische Einrichtungen fur Heimkehrer in Frankfurt (Oder)//Bran-denburgische historische Hefte. 1998. No. 9. S. 99.
8 Merker P. Das kleine Handbuch. S. 10.
9 Rundschreiben der Zentralverwaltung fur deutsche Umsiedler, 22.08.1946//Bundesarchiv (further BArch), DO/2/79, Bl. 67-68.
10 Hirthe ^Das Heimkehrerlager Gronenfelde//Brandenburgische historische Hefte. 1998. No. 9. S. 80.
11 Merker P. Das kleine Handbuch. S. 15.

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to the decision of the Potsdam conference Germans moved from these countries in Germaniyu12. Total number of the repatriates belonging to the category of the homeless was considerable, only in 1946 they made 20.8% of total number which were voyennoplennykh13.

The repatriates who did not have the permanent residence went to special the camp for the homeless. According to the order of the Central German office of work and social security "About a resotsializtion of the immigrants and repatriates who came back from captivity to production process" the 14th Germans who got in the camp for the homeless had to register there within 48 hours, having specified the pre-war profession. Labor exchanges (apSezagekzat1eg) registered the former prisoners of war depending on their qualification. Function of the German management of work and social security consisted at the same time in coordination of activity of labor exchanges. If the former prisoners of war did not find to themselves a job by profession, moved them to other lands where there were no experts of this qualification. The enterprises on which repatriates got a job were obliged to provide to them and housing. The prisoner of war who did not find to himself a job in the specialty could pass perekvalifikatsiyu15.

the Repatriates who were coming back home or to relatives, were obliged to register at the place of residence. Registration included several stages. At first the repatriate was registered in police station, then it underwent inspection in the central out-patient clinic. After obtaining references in the listed above institutions it was registered in housing management and at labor exchange. Having passed all instances, the former prisoner of war received food-cards. If the repatriate belonged to the category of persons in need, he had to be registered in social sluzhbe16.

The prisoners of war who came back from captivity in 1946 — the middle of 1947, received a single allowance. Its size was established by administration of the earth according to registration of the repatriate. Financing of subsidies was carried out at the expense of local byudzhetov17. The centralized payment of a lump sum began in 1947 after signing of Order No. 178 of Glavnonachalstvuyushchy SVAG "About Rendering the Single Help to the German Prisoners of War Who Came Back From the USSR" 18. The size of a grant was 50 brands, and its delivery began to be carried out in the Gronenfelde camp.

Special category were disabled people and disabled repatriates because they needed granting social benefits and pensions. The disability of the former prisoners of war was checked after receiving registratsii19. The repatriates recognized by medical commission disabled people were granted pension according to the Order SVAG No. 2820. Its minimum size in 1947 was 30 brands, in

12 Message about the Berlin conference of three powers//Tehran. Yalta. Potsdam. Sb. documents. M, 1971. Page 400.
13 Bericht uber Heimkehrerarbeiten, 20.01.1947//Stiftung Archiv der Parteien und Massenorganisati-onen der DDR im Bundesarchiv (further SAPMO-BArch), NY 4182/1160, Bl. 64.
14 Anweisung DVA "Uber die Wiedereingliederung der Umsiedler und Heimkehrer in den Produkti-onsprozess" 07.11.1946//Arbeit und Sozialfursorge. 1946. No. 18. S.398 — 399.
15 Ibid. S.399.
16 Markische Volkstimme. hg.: Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands, Landesverband Brandenburg. Abteilung Arbeit und Sozialfursorge. Potsdam, 1948. S. 15.
17 Fursorgema? nahmen fur Heimkehrer//Arbeit und Sozialfursorge. 1946. No. 15. S. 341 — 342.
18 Befehl des Obersten Chefs der Sowjetischen Militaradministration in Deutschland No. 178 "Erwei-sung einer einmaligen Hilfe an deutsche Kriegsgefangene, die aus der UdSSR zuruckkehren" 16.07.1947//SAPMO-BArch, DY 30/IV/2/2.027/35, Bl. 157-158.
19 Markische Volkstimme. S. 16.
20 Befehl der Sowjetischen Militaradministration in Deutschland No. 28 "Einfuhrung eines einheitli-chen System und von Verbesserung der Sozialversicherung in der sowjetischen Besatzungszone Deutschlands" 28.01.1947//Merker P. Das kleine Handbuch. S. 33-34.

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March, 1948 it was increased up to 5021. To the disabled people who refused obtaining new qualification, the grant was not paid.

On accustoming of the person 14 days were allotted to a situation, new to it, in East Germany then the former prisoner of war had to get a job. The country needed working hands therefore the come-back Germans, many of captivity, got under an obligatory working duty. The young people who were not in time to finish training could continue study.

Resocialization of the former prisoners of war in East Germany depended on a social and economic situation in the country and politicians of SVAG. The amount of the help was caused by financial opportunities of lands of East Germany. Support was given to the most needing repatriates whom disabled people and the homeless treated. Process of resocialization of the former prisoners of war who came back from the USSR to East Germany occupied long term, however most of repatriates managed to return and adapt to the changed living conditions.

RESOCIALIZATION OF THE FORMER GERMAN PRISONERS OF WAR AFTER THEIR RETURN TO EASTERN GERMANY FROM THE CAPTIVITY IN THE USSR, 1945-1949

Voronezh Institute of Economy and Social Management

E. V. RYAZHSKIKH

The article analyses resocialization of the former German prisoners of war after their return to Eastern Germany from the captivity in the USSR in the late 1940s. Documents from the State Archive of Federal Republic of Germany (Bundesarchiv) and special literature, let the author represent the role of German self-governmental organs of Eastern Germany in the process of resocialization of the former prisoners of war.

e-mail: eryazhskih@mail.ru

21 The short analysis of implementation of the estimate on social insurance for the first half of the year 1948//Archive of foreign policy of the Russian Federation (AVP Russian Federation). T. 082. Op. 30. Item 102. 47. L. 60.
Josephine Jones
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