The hypocrisy of Western historiography regarding Wehrmacht rapes on the Eastern Front

What makes the whole matter even more tragic is that German rapes of Polish and Soviet women, probably on an even larger scale and definitely preceding these Soviet rapes, are ignored by nearly all Western historians. Although probably millions of Soviet citizens, primarily women and girls, became rape victims, the topic has been grossly understudied.

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Even in spite of their official military and racial laws and rules, Germans of the Wehrmacht, the SS, the police, the civilian administration and their allies engaged in mass rape, including gang rape on an enormous and routine scale, in the occupied territories of the Soviet Union and Poland. The victims were Jews as well as gentiles; women and girls as well as men and boys; and victims were from the youngest of ages. There are examples of a 90-year old female rape victim as well as nine- or eight-year-old girls.

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Why nobody talks of American war crimes in World War II

“After the war, it was easier to talk about the Red Army raping women,” says Gerhardt, than to challenge the collective memory of the western Allies in 1945 as liberators. Stereotypes from the First World War of uncivilized Russians from the East, and Nazi-era propaganda about the Red Army also played their role, explains the author of the book, called “When the Soldiers Came.”

While spreading stories of “uncivilized” and “brutal” Russian soldiers, many Western historians have remained silent on the massive casualties sustained by the Soviet Union during the Second World War. While the war claimed the lives of 418,000 Americans, 600,000 French nationals and 450,000 Britons, the USSR’s casualties amounted to 27 million. On Soviet territory, Nazi soldiers committed hideous atrocities on a scale that could hardly be imagined by the West, such as the hanging and burning alive of peaceful civilians, including women and children.

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American rape in an idyll

In the idyllic Oberwarngau in district Miesbach two sisters are mowing on June 20th, 1945. One GI jumps from the forest, shoots one young woman, and chokes the other one. Then, he drags her into the undergrowth and abuses her. Because he doesn’t have cartridges, he tries to kill her with a stone.

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

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Lethal rapes committed by US soldiers in Upper Bavaria

Rapes with lethal consequences occured in Munich’s vicariate Mariahilf, where a woman from the Welfenstrasse was first abused, and then shot by American soldiers.

In Unterstein bei Berchtesgaden an 11-year old girl is shot in her foot during an escape attempt.

A woman injures herself when she jumps from a balcony.

In Tittmoning a woman dies due to an acute cardiac death because both of her daughters are threatened by GIs.

In Schönberg a young woman dies because of an abortion done wrong.

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

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Protective Rationalization

The chaplain had sinned, and it was good.
[…]
The chaplain had mastered, in a moment of divine intuition, the handy technique of protective rationalization, and he was exhilarated by his discovery. It was miraculous.
It was almost no trick at all, he saw, to turn vice into virtue and slander into truth, impotence into abstinence, arrogance into humility, plunder into philanthropy, thievery into honor, blasphemy into wisdom, brutality into patriotism, and sadism into justice.

Joseph Heller, Catch-22

“Hunt for women and girls”: American mass rapes in Upper Bavaria

Overall, the invasion reports of pastors in Archdiocese of Munich-Freising show an oppressive picture of an actual, comprehensive mass rape in Upper Bavaria, committed primarily by US soldiers, occasionally also by the French. Among others, it happened in

1. Lochhausen,
2. Obertaufkirchen,
3. Feldmoching,
4. Schellenberg bei Salzburg,
5. Neumarkt,
6. Oberau,
7. Ebersberg,
8. Grafing,
9. Holzkirchen,
10. Freising,
11. Miesbach (incl. rapes of children),
12. Moosach,
13. Kirchdorf bei Haag,
14. Wolfratshausen,
15. Otterfing,
16. Traunstein,

as well as in Munich in the parishes

* St. Emmeram,
* St. Achaz and
* Namen Jesu.

In many communities the pastors write generally about a “hunt for women and girls”, e. g. in Allach.

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

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American rapes in Dorfen

Pastor Matthias Kern from the parish St. Wolfgang in Dorfen writes:

“It had bad and exciting consequences that during the first two weeks cars with black and white soldiers came from Dorfen. Their pretext was to search for [German] soldiers. They forced their way into the houses and pounced on women and girls. Possibly, the rape may have succeeded in 5 to 10 cases.”

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

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What happens when you are female and trust American “liberators” in 1945

Pastor Ludwig Axenböck from the parish Schönau writes on July 21st, 1945: “A woman who lived in Mailling and who has been evacuated from Munich spent a lot of time with the Americans, drank with them. They threw her from the car in a forest and drove over her. She suffered a quintuple pelvis fracture and had to spend 10 weeks in the hospital of Aibling.”

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

Sources

  • Mirjam Gebhardt, “Als die Soldaten kamen“, chapter 3, “Wer schützt uns vor den Amerikanern?” (“Who protects us against the Americans?”)

The biggest problem of pastor Stephan from parish Oberhummel

Cleric Stephan from parish Oberhummel is particularly pitiless in his feelings. He writes that there have been heavy plunderigs and rapes.

But the “biggest problem” are liberated concentration camp inmates to whom the best food was offered. They ate too much of it and got sick.

You can find more information about the violence of American troops against civilians in Europe here.

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