Ralph Graham

Allied Powers Prepared to Impose
Harsh “Peace” upon Ruined Europe

Germany to Be Dismembered
and Occupied Indefinitely

Victims of Imperialist Slaughter Estimated
at 40,000,000; Double World War I Dead

(12 May 1945)

From The Militant, Vol. IX No. 19, 12 May 1945, pp. 1 & 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

Ending almost six years of uninterrupted bloodshed, terror and destruction, the war in Europe officially came to end on May 7 when, following the disintegration and collapse of the Nazi regime, Germany surrendered unconditionally to the Allied Powers.

At fearful cost in human life and treasure, the Allied imperialists, aided by their Soviet ally, have won complete victory over their German antagonists. The staggering ravages of the awful holocaust, far overshadowing those of World War I, have yet to be computed. At present they can be only broadly indicated.

A rough estimate places the human casualties at a minimum of 40,000,000, or double the number in World War I. In addition to the soldiers killed, wounded or missing in action, there are the tremendous civilian casualties caused by strategic air bombing. There are the multitudes who have died of disease and starvation. There are the victims of the concentration camps.

Over the European continent hangs a ghastly pall of death and devastation, the “peace” of the charnel house and the grave. This is the price the peoples are paying for the imperialist struggle to decide which coterie of capitalist gangsters shall dominate and exploit mankind.

Europe lies waste. Great cities, the centers of Europe’s ancient civilization and culture, are gutted. Innumerable towns and villages are now heaps of rubble. Hordes of refugees, sick and starving, wander about helplessly and hopelessly amid the ruins of their former homes.

The moloch of war, hungrily consuming everything in its path, has wiped out the means of production, destroyed the rural economy. Financial systems are in unutterable chaos. Economic ties between the nations have been disrupted.

Ruined Europe cannot even feed the multitudes of its hungry inhabitants, let alone house and clothe them. To the toll of millions of lives which the imperialist war has already exacted, must be added those now doomed to death by disease and starvation. They include the children, unnumbered millions of them, who are suffering from acute hunger and afflicted with rickets and other maladies of malnutrition.

Allied Plans

What next? The Allied victors long ago announced the type of “peace” they plan to impose on defeated Germany. It is their purpose to prevent their German imperialist rivals from challenging them again, and to prevent the German people from taking their destiny into their own hands along the road of the socialist revolution.

To these ends, they have prepared a Draconian “peace,” a super-Versailles under which they plan to destroy what remains of the core of Germany’s industrial economy. In addition, they intend to dismember Germany by carving it up into a series of separate states. For the execution of these reactionary plans, which mean perpetual want and destitution for the masses of all Europe, they plan a lengthy military occupation of the country.

In the early stages of the war, the announced aim of the Allies was confined to “rescuing Europe from fascist barbarism.” But the real aims of the “democratic” imperialists went considerably further. They were intent on substituting their own domination for that of Hitler and Mussolini. The fascist regimes have been shattered to smithereens. A new barbarism now will take the place of the old – the barbarism of a predatory imperialist “peace.”

There are manifold signs that the masses of Germany and other European countries will not submit to the new oppressors any more than they did the old. Rumblings of revolt can be heard from one end of the continent to the other. Just as the end of World War I was the signal to the European workers to rise and put an end to the bloody capitalist system, so the end of this war will mark the forward surge of the revolutionary movement.

Fear Masses

This is what the Allies victors fear. It is for this, mainly, that they intend to keep large forces in Europe. For all the fine talk about “democracy” and the right of every nation to choose its own government, the Allies have no intention of allowing the European peoples to determine their own future. As they have already done in Greece, Italy and Belgium, they intend to saddle the rest of Europe with reactionary dictatorships, propped up by Allied arms, so that the masses may be held in permanent subjection to the decayed capitalist system.

On the very day of Germany’s surrender, an Associated Press dispatch revealed that the U.S. Army is preparing to retain “a strong air arm” in Europe, with between 75,000 and 100,000 men in the ground crews alone, “long after the end of the war.” There is no attempt to conceal the real meaning of this plan. Says the dispatch: “The main purpose of the post-war air police will be to help maintain order in Germany.”

The military defeat of Germany, and later the defeat of Japan, will not spell peace unless the unleashed revolutionary power of the Working class sweeps away the putrid capitalist system, with its never-ending rivalries, and reconstructs society along socialist lines. Peace under capitalism is at best an uneasy interval between wars. World War III is already in preparation behind such deceitful facades as the San Francisco conference on “world security.”

Last updated on 7 November 2018