These words were feared by all German women in 1945. It was an indication that something unpleasant was coming their way. These words were uttered by wild looking tough battle-hardened Red Army soldiers who had learnt that smattering of German.
|Soviet soldiers burst into a room filled with young German girls|
|A Russian soldier forces himself on a hapless German woman|
German historian Miriam Gebhardt writes about a German man saying, "My niece was raped by fourteen Russian officers in the next room. My wife was towed by a Russian in the barn and also raped. After being locked up in a stable and raped the next morning five clock at gunpoint again. When the column was gone, we found my wife under a pile of straw, where they had fled in fear. "
As a former slogan sums up: "The Americans took six years to fight down the German soldiers to have a German woman, it took a day and a table of chocolate."
The terrible deeds played out not only in the areas where Red Army soldiers often roamed. Also in the UK, the French and the American zone of occupation, there was mass rape, sometimes for several days.
Berlin women, it seems, were short of food, but well provided with poison. There were instances of mass-suicide by poison. The actor Paul Bildt and some twenty others dispatched themselves thus, only he woke again and lived for another dozen years. His daughter was among the dead. Attesting once more to the incidence of suicide among the nobles, especially those who lived on isolated estates in the Mark Brandenburg, the writer cites a number of cases showing how far the old families would go to protect the dignity of their daughters: death was preferable to dishonour.
After The Reich by Giles Macdonogh P 99
The film Eine Frau in Berlin "A woman in Berlin ", based on the bestselling book of the same name conjures up images of one of the most brutal pages from the past: sexual violence against German women at the end of World War II.
Insulting the honor of German women. Ordinary women who had nothing to do with the Nazi government. Was it fair? And the Americans looked away.
Millions of women victims raped by Russian soldiers during the last months of World War II. Anthony Beevor's book "Berlin -- The Downfall 1945" documents rape by Russian soldiers. "Beevor's conclusions are that in response to the vast scale of casualties inflicted on them by the Germans the Soviets responded in kind, and that included rape on a vast scale. It started as soon as the Red Army entered East Prussia and Silesia in 1944, and in many towns and villages every female aged from 10 to 80 was raped." The author "was 'shaken to the core' to discover that even their own Russian and Polish women and girls liberated from German concentration camps were also violated." Until recent years, East German women from the World War II era referred to the Red Army war memorial in Berlin as "the Tomb of the Unknown Rapist."
Just inside the east Prussian border with Soviet occupied Lithuania, the town of Nemmersdorf was the first to fall (temporarily) into the hands of the victorious Soviet Army.
SourceOverrun by General Gatlitsky's 11th Guards Army, his soldiers, crazy with bloodlust, set about raping, looting and killing with such ferocity that eventually discipline had to be restored to force the soldiers back to fighting the war. From buildings, Russian signs were hung which read 'Soldiers! Majdanek does not forgive. Take revenge without mercy!'. When the Soviet 4th Army took over the town five days later, hardly a single inhabitant remained alive. Women were found nailed to barn doors after being stripped naked and gang raped, their bodies then used for bayonet practice. Many women, and girls as young as eight years old, were raped so often and brutally that they died from this abuse alone. Children were shot indiscriminately and all those trying to flee were crushed to death under the treads of the Soviet tanks. Forty French prisoners-of-war were shot on the spot as spies after welcoming the Red Army as liberators. Seventy one women and one man were found in houses, all dead. All the women, including girls aged from eight to twelve, had been raped.In other East Prussian villages within the triangle Gumbinnen-Goldap-Ebenrode, the same scenes were witnessed, old men and boys being castrated and their eyes gouged out before being killed or burned alive. In nearby Metgethen, a suburb of Königsberg, recaptured by the German 5th Panzer Division, around 60 women were found in a demented state in a large villa. They had been raped on average 60 to 70 times a day. In nearly every home, the bodies of women and children were found raped and murdered. The bodies of two young women were found, their legs had been tied one limb each between two trucks, and then torn apart when the trucks were driven away in opposite directions. At Metgethen railway station, a refugee train from Konigsberg, consisting of seven passenger coaches, was found and in each compartment seven to nine bestially mutilated bodies were discovered. To the Russians, refugee trains were ideal sources of women and booty. In the town of Niesse in Silesia, 182 Catholic nuns were raped and debauched daily by the Russians. In the town of Demmin in Mecklenburg, German troops destroyed the bridge over the river Peene to slow down the advance of the Red Army. Nevertheless, the town was handed over to the Soviets without much of resistance and soon after around 800 of its citizens committed suicide by drowning in the Peene or by taking poison in fear of rape or murder by the Soviet troops.In a house in another town, children were found sitting around a dinner table, plates of potato pancakes in front of them. All were dead, their tongues nailed to the table. Soviet officers reported back to Moscow that mass poisoning from captured alcohol, including dangerous chemicals found in laboratories, is damaging the fighting capacity of the Soviet Army. All too often, soldiers who had drunk too much and were unable to perform the sex act, used the bottle to mutilate their victims obscenely. Alexander Solzhenitsyn, an ex-captain in the Soviet Army, recalls, "All of us knew very well that if girls were German they could be raped and then shot. This was almost a combat distinction". (Details of these, and other atrocities, are contained in the Eastern Documentation Section of the German Federal Archives in Berlin)The orgy of rape by Soviet troops was far greater than at first believed. Even Russian women and young girls, newly liberated from German concentration camps in Poland and in Germany, were brutally violated. The thousands of Russian women taken to Germany for forced labour also fell victims to the rapists. 'I waited for the Red Army for days and nights. I waited for my liberation, but now our soldiers treat us far worse than the Germans did' said one Maria Shapoval,'They do terrible things to us'.
American and British soldiers too...
Not all rapists wore a red star. John Dos Passos in "Life" on January 7, 1946, stated that "lust, whiskey and plunder - was a reward for the soldier." One soldier wrote in Time magazine (Time) on November 12, 1945: "A lot of normal American families would be horrified if they knew how utterly insensitively our boys "behaved here." An army sergeant wrote: "And our army and British army ... had their share of looting and rape ... Although these crimes are not typical for our troops, but their percentage is high enough to give our army of sinister reputation, so that we too can be called an army of tyrants."
Sociologist and criminologist Professor Bob Lilly makes unprecedented use of military records and trial transcripts to throw light on one of the overlooked consequences of the US Army's presence in Western Europe between 1942 and 1945: the rape of an estimated 14,000 civilian women in the United Kingdom, France and Germany.
Rape of Japanese Women By American Soldiers During WW2
Rape By German And Waffen SS Soldiers During WW2
Sexual Violence in Conflict Zones: From the Ancient World to the Era of Human Rights
"[Sexual Violence in Conflict Zones] makes a significant contribution to our understanding of the relationship between sexual violence and periods of conflict."
Brutality and Desire: War and Sexuality in Europe's Twentieth Century