Copulation without conversation is not fraternization

Rape and robbery were committed by the Western Allies as well. […] War correspondent Omar White had been with General George Patton’s Third US Army as it moved through southern Germany in April 1945. He said frankly:

Even before American troops reached the big concentration camps in which death squads specialized in the murder of Jews and Slavs, and the world learned the meaning of Hitler’s promise to arrive at a ‘final solution’, the fighting men who stormed into Germany were angry and in a vengeful mood. They had found out in France and Belgium, at first hand, about Nazi atrocities. Few wavered in the conviction that the Germans they killed deserved their fate, or that the survivors had little right to human consideration. At first, the treatment of German civilians was harsh. General Eisenhower’s broadcast proclamation — ‘We come as conquerors’ — implied the right of military commanders to requisition whatever accommodation remained intact in half demolished towns. The aged, the sick, the very young, were often driven out into the ruins to fend for themselves.
I heard one idea expressed again and again: ‘The only way to teach these krauts that war doesn’t pay is to kick them about the way they kicked other people about.’ And conquest tacitly implied the right to booty. The victorious troops appropriated whatever portable enemy property they fancied: liquor and cigars, cameras, binoculars, shotguns and sporting rifles, ceremonial swords and daggers, silver ornaments and plate and fur garments. This sort of petty looting was known as ‘liberating’ or ‘souvenir-ing’. Military police looked the other way. The men felt that they were handing out rough justice — morally valid retribution — to a race whose armies had plundered Europe for nearly five years.
But after the fighting moved onto German soil there was also a good deal of rape by combat troops and those immediately following them. The incidence varied between unit and unit according to the attitude of the commanding officer. In some cases offenders were identified, tried by court martial and punished. The army legal branch was reticent, but admitted that for brutal or perverted sexual offences against German women, some soldiers had been shot. Yet I know for a fact that many women were raped by American troops and no action was taken against the culprits. In one sector a report went round that a certain very distinguished army commander had made the wisecrack: ‘Copulation without conversation does not constitute fraternization.’

Michael, Jones, “After Hitler: The Last Days of the Second World War in Europe”

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