Dictionary of East European History since 1945

By Joseph Held | Go to book overview
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treaty with the statement that the inclusion of its armed forces would be considered later.

After the official announcement of the formation of the East German army, the East German state was admitted to the Warsaw Pact forces in 1956. With this pact and with the treaties of friendship and mutual cooperation East Germany signed with the East European communist states and the Soviet Union, East Germany was completely and thoroughly integrated into the Soviet system, and it became part of the Soviet colonial empire in Europe.


Bibliography

Keesing Research Report. Germany and Eastern Europe Since 1945: From the Potsdam Agreement to Chancellor Brandts' Ostpolitik ( New York, 1973).

Kulturbund (Culture League). In July 1945, a Culture League for the Democratic Revival of Germany was formed in the Soviet zone of occupation. Its president was the communist poet, Johannes R. Becher. The original intention behind the establishment of this group was to propagate the works of writers, artists, and other creative people who were disliked or even banned during the Nazi era in Germany. Very soon, however, the Kulturbund became the advocate of Soviet literature and Soviet films, whose introduction into Germany it promoted.

In general, as a communist organization, it was dedicated to the propagation of "socialist realism." This organization eventually gained control of the Aufbau Verlag, the state publishing house (see Aufbau Verlag), that became the major source of Marxist-Leninist works in East Germany. Originally, its advocacy of Marxist-Leninist ideology was restrained. However, as time went on, and as East Germany emerged as a state, the Kulturbund no longer had to hide behind a facade, and it became an open and dogmatic advocate of socialist realism in every area of culture. It eventually become an instrument of the communist leadership to transmit cultural policies to various organizations.

As the party developed further, however, the role of the Kulturbund declined because cultural policies no longer had to be put through intermediaries but were directly dispensed by the communist leaders (see Cultural Policies in East Germany).


Bibliography

Krisch Henry, The German Democratic Republic: The Search for Identity ( Boulder, CO, 1974).

Marshall Plan and East Germany. In March 1947 the foreign ministers of the four Allied powers met in Moscow. The Soviet minister of foreign affairs presented a proposal including the following; (1) the Soviet Union should receive reparations of $10 billion at 1938 prices from the defeated nations, but mostly from Germany and Japan; (2) the German industrial heartland, the Ruhr Valley, should be placed under the control of the four powers; (3) the Oder-Neisse line should be considered definitely the border between Poland and Germany, and the former eastern territories of Poland

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