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The New International, June 1944

Notes of the Month

The Plan to Destroy Germany


From The New International, Vol. X No. 6, June 1944, pp. 166–168.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


The first step in the destruction of Germany is to be the complete military occupation of the country after the war. That this was one of the decisions made at the Teheran Conference is no longer much of a secret. The American Army and Navy Journal, which is very well informed about such matters, reported as much on January 15, 1944, when it said that it was agreed at Teheran that the three big Allies would take direct military control of the country, each garrisoning one-third of it. On March 26, the London Sunday Observer, “which has achieved a reputation for being right more often than wrong on diplomatic news” (says the New York Times), announced the gist of the details of the Teheran agreement:

  1. The western boundary of the Russian zone of occupation is to run roughly along a right angle formed by the Danube and a prolongation of the lower reaches of the River Oder southward.
  2. Bavaria, Saxony and Wuerttemberg would come under the exclusive occupation of United States troops while western Germany up to the Oder as well as part of central Germany would be occupied exclusively by British troops.
  3. Berlin itself would be occupied jointly by forces of the three great powers.

An almost identical geographical division of the spoils was indicated some months ago by Miss Dorothy Thompson, whose sources of information are not unimportant. On April 14 the Associated Press reported from London that “an American-British-Russian plan for administering occupied Germany is nearing completion, providing for an ‘Allied Military Government with teeth in it.’ It makes General Dwight E. Eisenhower the supreme authority in areas occupied by American and British forces and calls for Russian military control of areas occupied by the Red Army.” The report continues:

Other details of the program as described to this correspondent by a highly placed informant include:

Teams of military government officers are now being trained in Britain to handle every phase of German public life and to execute a complete purge of the Nazis when the Allied armies enter Germany.

The Allied Military Government organization is to be used nowhere in Europe except in Germany and in the satellite nations loyal to Berlin to the end ...

General Eisenhower will have a vast control, direct and indirect, over the civilian life of all of Europe liberated by the Allies until normal diplomatic channels are resumed. It is likely this will be for some time.

It is understood that the Russians have agreed to the military government principle and are now training forces to work with the Red Army in the zones assigned to it.

There is no question of self-government for Germany. The Allies are prepared to deal with a completely disorganized and decentralized country. From the lessons learned in Italy, Allied authorities have little hope of finding any anti-Nazi key figures capable of assuming leadership.

This is not all. The pinnacle, or close to the pinnacle, of imperialist insanity and viciousness is reached by the plan worked out two weeks later, on April 29, by the representatives of eight “exiled European governments” – the Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Luxemburg, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Greece and Yugoslavia – and the de Gaulle Committee. Under the terms of this plan, which is to be submitted by these governments-without-a-country to the Big Three,

... the Allies would possess veto power over decisions of the Reichstag and other German legislative bodies if they violated the disarmament clauses to which Germany would have to submit.

One of the most drastic points is the stipulation that all German foreign holdings and investments abroad would be liquidated for the benefit of the Allies.

The project, as drafted, includes on the economic side:

  1. Suppression of the Reich’s war industries.
  2. Abolition or restriction of mixed industries, such as machine tools and chemicals, that could easily be converted from peace to war.
  3. Limits to be imposed on German synthetic and plastic industries ...

The scheme demands strict Allied control over the three following German financial powers:

  1. Supervision of all German federal, state and municipal expenditures.
  2. Control of all public and financial resources, including taxes, custom receipts and other revenues.
  3. Control of the public budget.

... The issue of stocks and bonds would come under Allied control. On the other hand, the Allies would encourage public savings hanks and other cooperative banking institutions. [Why, in heaven’s name, why? Who would have any savings to deposit? – Ed.]

...The Allies would control the Reichsbank and all other state banks as well as five of Germany’s most important private banks.

Etc., etc. (New York Times, April 30, 1944)

Once such control were established, the German people would be as free as birds, devoting themselves to the cultivation of turnips and the manufacture of paper dolls, happy in the knowledge that they are still permitted to use any public toilet without let or hindrance from General Eisenhower or Marshal Stalin.

If it were not simply in the nature of things imperialist, the drafting of such a plan by the nine governments in exile would be hair-raising. Here are people who do not even need eyes in their heads to see with. They have felt on their own hides what it means when such a plan, such a regime, is applied to viable, and especially modern, countries. By what national-biological necromancy do they expect chat the consequences ensuing from such a plan when applied to a country bearing the name of Poland or France, would not follow just as disastrously when applied to a country bearing the name of Germany? If it brought tempest and convulsions, wrack and ruin, to all the countries on which Germany imposed it, why should it bring beneficent calm and joyous laughter when imposed on Germany? The utter madness of the plan is fully grasped if it is further borne in mind that this plan was submitted for the approval of the Big Three by people, every one of whom lies awake nights worrying about how much independence is going to be granted his country, not by the Nazis, but by England, Russia and the United States!

The Russian Plan

Even this is not yet all, although one would think that it was enough of a free gift to Herren Göbbels and Hitler to last them for ten years of effective propaganda work among their subjects at home and their troops on the battlefields, propaganda work that would require no more effort from their otherwise inventive minds that the straight repetition of what the Allies themselves propose. Most explicit and detailed of all the plans for “liberating” Germany are those emanating from Moscow. They boil down to this idea, worthy of the genial Marshal: “Hitlerite oppression and exploitation are patently improper when applied to us, but the quintessence of justice when applied to Germany.” It is said in almost those words by Eugen Varga, one of the many living synonyms Stalin employs in setting forth his views:

It would be just and practically expedient to draw workers from Germany and countries allied with Germany to work after the war in restoring devastated areas. The Hitlerite bandits who have trampled on international law are forcibly sending into Germany millions of peaceful inhabitants of occupied countries and in particular inhabitants of occupied zones of the Soviet Union, compelling them to make weapons to be used against their own country. Justice demands [that we act the very same way! – Ed.] that after the end of the war the Germans should participate [a beautiful word! – Ed.] in the reconstruction of the roads, bridges, towns and factories they destroyed during the war. (War and the Working Class, October 1943)

How many Germans are to “participate” in this slave-labor plan? The figure of ten to fifteen millions has been given! In endorsing the Atlantic Charter, Stalin must have read the promise in Point 4 “to further the enjoyment of all states, great or small, victor or vanquished, of access, on equal terms, to the trade and to the raw materials of the world.” True to the promise, he plans to give at least several million citizens of the vanquished country “access” to the “raw materials” of Russia’s forests, mines and fields, “on equal terms” with his own slave-labor. Is it permitted to doubt if the candidates for this “participation” and “access” will not display the necessary enthusiasm for the plan, despite the eminent “justice” of it?

(We doubt also if this enthusiasm can be generated by imitating those “Trotskyists” who reside on the remoter planets and call to the German proletariat to “defend the Soviet Union – unconditionally!” and to work with might and main “for the victory of the Red Army” which is “bringing socialism” to Europe. Although, to be perfectly fair, as the selected candidates for “participation” are crowded into Stalin’s cattle cars, they may reflect that these Martian and Mercurian “Trotskyists” did, after all, tell them that while they favored Stalin’s army taking Germany, they were at the same time opposed to his “methods,” that is, they supported the creation of the indispensable pre-conditions that would guarantee his use of his “methods” but did not support his using them. The “participants” will surely find this thought very heartening.)

The impressment of millions of German workers into slave labor is not the whole of the plan of our somewhat “degenerated workers’ state.” Stalin-Varga continues:

As regards the proportions of reparations payable from the national wealth of the aggressor countries immediately after the end of the war, it would be obviously unjust if the aggressor countries were not required to cover losses caused by them to an extent which would make their economic position no more favorable than that of their victims. Furthermore, justice demands that the property of persons responsible for the instigation of the war and persons who have grown rich on plundering the occupied countries should be confiscated and wholly devoted to reparation damage. (Ibidem)

Confiscation of Property – by Whom?

Justice is a veritable mania with Stalin, and it is a brand of justice that makes Clemenceau’s Versailles Treaty look like a boon to Germany. Who is to “confiscate”? The German people, who were the first and who will be the last to suffer from the crimes of the Nazi tyrants and of the “persons responsible for the instigation of the war”? No, the Russian bureaucracy. Its formula is all-embracing. If the property of all those who are “responsible for the instigation of the war” and “who have grown rich on plundering the occupied countries” is to be confiscated and “wholly devoted to reparation damage,” this means the seizure of not less than ninety-nine per cent of the industrial and financial wealth of Germany. There is hardly a single member of the German bourgeoisie who does not fall into one or both of the categories listed. A Moscow commentator on the Stalin-Varga plan makes clear that it

... contemplates the removal from Germany and her accomplices to formerly occupied territories of part of their movable property, such as machines, apparatus and equipment for industrial enterprises, locomotives, railway cars, motor transport, ships, cattle, seed and other agricultural products, coal, metal and similar goods.

Will the Germans be left any turnips, or do these come under the heading of “seed and other agricultural products”? In any case, Russia, too, will undoubtedly consent – justice is justice! – to leaving the Germans all the equipment needed for making paper dolls.

(The latter can console themselves in the knowledge, taught exclusively by the above-noted Martians and Mercurians, that the “movable property,” etc., will be promptly nationalized as soon as it reaches Russian soil and there becomes part of the “socialized economy,” to be operated by the equally socialized ten to fifteen million German “participants” who will be guarded by the likewise socialized GPU, which holds the keys to the just as socialized prisons.)

An important characteristic of Germany’s “movable property” is that it can be moved to the West as well as to the East. If we have dwelled on Russia’s “moving” plans, it is only because they have already been avowed in writing, and not because these plans are exclusive to Russia. The other Allies, big and little, will not absent themselves from the jungle feast over prostrated Germany, any more than Italy absented herself from sharing in the Axis’ spoils.

Yet, not even this is the full story of what is in store for Germany, which is another way of saying, as we have tried to set forth, for Europe. Physical dismemberment is also in store for her. That Austria is to be separated from Germany proper and then put into Allied military and economic receivership, goes without saying; it was made dear enough in the Moscow declaration on Austria made by Hull, Eden and Molotov. The press has persistently printed unofficial reports that Bavaria is to be separated from Germany; there have even been reports that the French adventure in establishing an “independent Rhineland Republic” in 1923 will be essayed again.

In Moscow’s War and the Working Class (May 1944), a Professor Stein, i.e., Stalin-Stein, has come out openly for the principle of dismembering Germany, and denounced the “renowned Cliveden clique” because “they are the ones who shout now that a dismemberment of German territory in favor of any other governments cannot be approved of morally.” Which makes perfectly clear the category to which the Russian imperialists have already assigned anybody and everybody who opposes the application to Germany of the policy Hitler tried to apply to Russia and other countries.

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