The East German Leadership and the Division of Germany

The East German Leadership and the Division of Germany

Author: Dirk Spilker

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 9780199284122

Category: History

Page: 296

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Would it have been possible to build a unified and democratic Germany half a century before the fall of the Berlin Wall? This book reassesses this question by exploring Germany's division after the Second World War from the point of view of the SED, the communist-led and Soviet-sponsored ruling party of East Germany.Drawing on unpublished documents from the SED archives, Dr Spilker rejects claims that the East German comrades and their Soviet masters had abandoned their struggle for socialism and were willing to accept a democratic Germany in exchange for a pledge to neutrality. He argues that the communists' sudden switch to a multi-party approach at the end of the war was a tactical move inspired not by a desire for compromise but by the mistaken belief that they could win political hegemony - and thechance to introduce socialism throughout Germany - through the ballot box.Communist optimism, as this book shows, rested on specific assumptions about the situation after the war, all of which revolved around the prospect of political instability and social unrest in West Germany. The comrades in East Berlin did not just say that their regime would ultimately prevail, they genuinely believed it. Nor should their hopes be dismissed as a mere fantasy. In the aftermath of the war, the economic gap between the two Germanies was still relatively narrow and West Germany'sfuture success as a magnet for the people in East Germany was by no means guaranteed.
Driving the Soviets up the Wall
Language: en
Pages: 368
Authors: Hope M. Harrison
Categories: Political Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2011-06-27 - Publisher: Princeton University Press

The Berlin Wall was the symbol of the Cold War. For the first time, this path-breaking book tells the behind-the-scenes story of the communists' decision to build the Wall in 1961. Hope Harrison's use of archival sources from the former East German and Soviet regimes is unrivalled, and from these
Three Germanies
Language: en
Pages: 336
Authors: Michael Gehler
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2013-06-01 - Publisher: Reaktion Books

Since the defeat of the Third Reich in 1945, Germany has been in a continual state of turmoil and reinvention. In Three Germanies, Michael Gehler explores the political rollercoaster Germany has been riding since the Yalta Conference, which split postwar Germany into separate zones controlled by the Soviets, Americans, French,
The East German Leadership and the Division of Germany
Language: en
Pages: 296
Authors: Dirk Spilker
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 2006-07-13 - Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

Would it have been possible to build a unified and democratic Germany half a century before the fall of the Berlin Wall? This book reassesses this question by exploring Germany's division after the Second World War from the point of view of the SED, the communist-led and Soviet-sponsored ruling party
Romanian and East German Policies in the Third World
Language: en
Pages: 173
Authors: Thomas P. M. Barnett
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 1992 - Publisher: Praeger Pub Text

This book is a unique comparison of the Third World policies of the two East European regimes that were most active in the South during the 1970s and 1980s. The study examines why Romania's and East Germany's high activity levels in the South cannot be explained away as mere surrogacy
The Berlin Crisis of 1961
Language: en
Pages: 536
Authors: Robert M. Slusser
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 1973-02 - Publisher: Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press

"The Berlin Wall (German: Berliner Mauer) was a barrier constructed by the German Democratic Republic (GDR, East Germany) starting on 13 August 1961, that completely cut off (by land) West Berlin from surrounding East Germany and from East Berlin. The barrier included guard towers placed along large concrete walls, which