SUPPORT THE WORK

GetWiki

West Germany

ARTICLE SUBJECTS
aesthetics  →
being  →
complexity  →
database  →
enterprise  →
ethics  →
fiction  →
history  →
internet  →
knowledge  →
language  →
licensing  →
linux  →
logic  →
method  →
news  →
perception  →
philosophy  →
policy  →
purpose  →
religion  →
science  →
sociology  →
software  →
truth  →
unix  →
wiki  →
ARTICLE TYPES
essay  →
feed  →
help  →
system  →
wiki  →
ARTICLE ORIGINS
critical  →
discussion  →
forked  →
imported  →
original  →
West Germany
[ temporary import ]
please note:
- the content below is remote from Wikipedia
- it has been imported raw for GetWiki
{{about|the Federal Republic of Germany as it was between 1949 and 1990 ("the Bonn Republic")|the Federal Republic of Germany since 1990 ("the Berlin Republic")|Germany|the German state between 1919 and 1933 ("the Weimar Republic")|Weimar Republic}}{{Distinguish|Western Germany|Old states of Germany}}{{pp-move-indef}}{{short description|Federal Republic of Germany in the years 1949–1990}}{{more citations needed|date=March 2016}}{{Use dmy dates|date=August 2013}}







factoids
Federal Republic of Germany (reunified Germany)|flag_s1=Flag of Germany.svg|image_flag = Flag of Germany.svg|image_coat = File:Coat of arms of Germany.svg|symbol_type = Coat of arms|image_map = West Germany 1956-1990.svg|image_map_caption = Territory of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany) from the accession of the Saar on 1 January 1957 to German reunification on 3 October 1990 (1952–1990)"Ich hab' mich ergeben" and "Hymne an Deutschland" (1949–1952)}}|capital = Bonnf |largest_city = HamburgGerman language>GermanGermans>West GermanPresident of Germany>PresidentTheodor Heuss >year_leader1 = 1949–1959Heinrich Lübke >year_leader2 = 1959–1969Gustav Heinemann >year_leader3 = 1969–1974Walter Scheel >year_leader4 = 1974–1979Karl Carstens >year_leader5 = 1979–1984Richard von Weizsäckerb >year_leader6 = 1984–1990Chancellor of Germany (1949–)>ChancellorKonrad Adenauer >year_deputy1 = 1949–1963Ludwig Erhard >year_deputy2 = 1963–1966Kurt Georg Kiesinger >year_deputy3 = 1966–1969Willy Brandt >year_deputy4 = 1969–1974Helmut Schmidt >year_deputy5 = 1974–1982Helmut Kohlc >year_deputy6 = 1982–1990|legislature = Bundestag|era = Cold WarHistory of Germany (1945–90)>Formation|date_start = 23 May|year_start = 1949Saar statute>Accession of Saar Protectorate|date_event1 = 1 January 1957|event2 = Admitted to the United Nations|date_event2 = 18 September 1973German reunification>Reunification|date_end = 3 October|year_end = 1990|stat_year1 = 1950|stat_year2 = 1970|stat_year3 = 1990|stat_area3 = 248577|stat_pop1 = 50,958,000d|stat_pop2 = 61,001,000|stat_pop3 = 63,254,000|GDP_PPP_year = 1990|GDP_PPP = $946 billion|GDP_PPP_rank = 4thtime_zone = Central European Time >utc_offset = +1 Central European Summer Time>CEST |utc_offset_DST = +2|cctld = .de|calling_code = 49weblink {{webarchive >url=https://web.archive.org/web/20111205175152weblink |date=5 December 2011 }}|footnote_b = Continued as President of the reunified Germany until 1994.|footnote_c = Continued as Chancellor of the reunified Germany until 1998.Bevölkerungsstand {{webarchive>url=https://web.archive.org/web/20131113231041weblink |date=13 November 2013 }}|footnote_e = In Saarland, between January 1957 and July 1959, the French franc and Saar franc.|footnote_f = At first, Bonn was referred to only as the provisional seat of government institutions, but from the early 1970s it was called the "federal capital" (Bundeshauptstadt).Germany}}|symbol_type_article = Coat of Arms of Germany#Federal Republic of Germany}}West Germany was the informal name for the Federal Republic of Germany (), a country in Central Europe, in the period between its formation on 23 May 1949 and German reunification on 3 October 1990. During this Cold War period, the western portion of Germany was part of the Western bloc. The Federal Republic was created during the Allied occupation of Germany after World War II, established from eleven states formed in the three Allied zones of occupation held by the United States, the United Kingdom and France. Its (provisional) capital was the city of Bonn. The Cold War era West Germany is unofficially historically designated the "Bonn Republic".The Bonn Republic â€” West German democracy, 1945-1990, Anthony James Nicholls, Longman, 1997At the onset of the Cold War, Europe was divided among the Western and Eastern blocs. Germany was divided into two countries and two special territories, the Saarland and a divided Berlin. Initially, the Federal Republic of Germany claimed an exclusive mandate for all of Germany, considering itself to be the sole democratically reorganised continuation of the 1871–1945 German Reich. It took the line that the German Democratic Republic (GDR) was an illegally constituted puppet state. Though the GDR did hold regular elections, these were neither free nor fair. From the West German perspective, the GDR was therefore illegitimate. Three southwestern states of West Germany merged to form Baden-Württemberg in 1952, and the Saarland joined the Federal Republic of Germany in 1957. In addition to the resulting ten states, West Berlin was considered an unofficial eleventh state. While legally not part of the Federal Republic of Germany, as Berlin was under the control of the Allied Control Council, West Berlin politically aligned itself with West Germany and was represented in its federal institutions.The foundation for the influential position held by Germany today was laid during the (economic miracle) of the 1950s when West Germany rose from the enormous destruction wrought by World War II to become the world's third-largest economy. The first chancellor Konrad Adenauer, who remained in office until 1963, had worked for a full alignment with NATO rather than neutrality. He not only secured a membership in NATO but was also a proponent of agreements which developed into the present-day European Union. When the G6 was established in 1975, there was no question as to whether the Federal Republic of Germany would become a member.Following the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989, symbolised by the opening of the Berlin Wall, there was a rapid move towards German reunification. East Germany voted to dissolve itself and accede to the Federal Republic in 1990. Its five post-war states () were reconstituted along with the reunited Berlin, which ended its special status and formed an additional . They formally joined the Federal Republic on 3 October 1990, raising the number of states from ten to sixteen, ending the division of Germany. The reunion did not result in a new country; instead, the process was essentially a voluntary act of accession, whereby West Germany was enlarged to include the additional states of East Germany, which had ceased to exist. The expanded Federal Republic retained West Germany's political culture and continued its existing memberships in international organisations, as well as its Western foreign policy alignment and affiliation to Western alliances like UN, NATO, OECD and the European Union.

Naming conventions

The official name of West Germany, adopted in 1949 and unchanged since is (Federal Republic of Germany).In East Germany, the terms (West Germany) or (West German Federal Republic) were preferred during the 1950s and 1960s. This changed once under its 1968 constitution, when the idea of a single German nation was abandoned by East Germany, and as a result West Germans and West Berliners were officially considered foreigners. In the early 1970s, starting in the East German , the initialism "BRD" (FRG) for the "Federal Republic of Germany" began to prevail in East German usage. In 1973, official East German sources adopted it as a standard expression and other Eastern Bloc nations soon followed suit.In reaction to this move, in 1965 the West German Federal Minister of All-German Affairs Erich Mende issued the Directives for the appellation of Germany, recommending avoiding the initialism. On 31 May 1974, the heads of West German federal and state governments recommended always using the full name in official publications. From then on West German sources avoided the abbreviated form, with the exception of left-leaning organizations which embraced it. In November 1979 the federal government informed the that the West German public broadcasters and had agreed to refuse to use the initialism.See in general: weblink" title="web.archive.org/web/20110605033550weblink">Stefan Schmidt, "Die Diskussion um den Gebrauch der Abkürzung «BRD»", in: Aktueller Begriff, Deutscher Bundestag â€“ Wissenschaftliche Dienste (ed.), No. 71/09 (4 September 2009)The ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 country code of West Germany was "DE" (for Deutschland, Germany), which has remained the country code of Germany after reunification. ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 are the most widely used country codes, and the "DE" code is notably used as country identifier extending the postal code and as the Internet's country code top-level domain .de. Accordingly, the less widely used ISO 3166-1 alpha-3 country code of West Germany was "DEU", which has also remained the country code of reunified Germany. The now deleted codes for East Germany, on the other hand, was "DD" in ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 and "DDR" in ISO 3166-1 alpha-3.The colloquial term "West Germany" or its equivalent was used in many languages. "" was also a widespread colloquial form used in German-speaking countries, usually without political overtones.

History

{{History of Germany}}File:Map-Germany-1945.svg|thumb|upright|Occupation zone borders in Germany, 1947. The territories east of the Oder-Neisse line, under Polish and Soviet administration/annexation, are shown in cream, as is the detached Saar protectorate. Bremen was an American enclave within the British zone. Berlin was a four-power area within the Soviet zone.]]On 4–11 February 1945 leaders from the United States, the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union held the Yalta Conference where future arrangements as regards post-war Europe and strategy against Japan in the Pacific were negotiated. Throughout the 1930s, Nazi Germany had followed a policy of reclaiming German lands lost in the Versailles Treaty, and of reuniting other territories occupied by German peoples within the German Reich, so the Allies agreed that the boundaries of Germany as at 31 December 1937 would be chosen as demarcating German national territory from German occupied territory; all German annexations after 1937 were automatically null. Subsequently, and into the 1970s, the West German state was to maintain that these 1937 boundaries continued to be 'valid in international law'; although the Allies had already agreed amongst themselves that East Prussia and Silesia must be transferred to Poland and the Soviet Union in any Peace agreement. The conference agreed that post-war Germany, minus these transfers, would be divided into four occupation zones: a French Zone in the far west; a British Zone in the northwest; an American Zone in the south; and a Soviet Zone in the East. Berlin was separately divided into four zones. These divisions were not intended to dismember Germany, only to designate zones of administration.By the subsequent Potsdam Agreement, the four Allied Powers asserted joint sovereignty over 'Germany as a whole', defined as the totality of the territory within the occupation zones. Former German areas east of the rivers Oder and Neisse and outside of 'Germany as a whole' were separated from German sovereignty in July 1945 and transferred from Soviet military occupation to Polish and Russian civil administration, their Polish and Russian status to be confirmed at a final Peace Treaty. Following wartime commitments by the Allies to the governments-in-exile of Czechoslovakia and Poland, the Potsdam Protocols also agreed to the 'orderly and humane' transfer back to Germany as a whole of the ethnic German populations in Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary. Eight million German expellees and refugees eventually settled in West Germany. Between 1946 and 1949, three of the occupation zones began to merge. First, the British and American zones were combined into the quasi-state of Bizonia. Soon afterwards, the French zone was included into Trizonia. At the same time, new federal states () were formed in the Allied zones; replacing the geography of pre-Nazi German states such as the Free State of Prussia and the Republic of Baden, which had derived ultimately from former independent German kingdoms and principalities.In the dominant post-war narrative of West Germany, the Nazi regime was characterised as having been a 'criminal' state,Justin Collings, Democracy's Guardian: A History of the German Federal Constitutional Court, Oxford; OUP, 2015, pp xxiv, illegal and illegitimate from the outset; while the Weimar Republic was characterised as having been a 'failed' state,Justin Collings, Democracy's Guardian: A History of the German Federal Constitutional Court, Oxford; OUP, 2015, pp xv, whose inherent institutional and constitutional flaws had been exploited by Hitler in his illegal seizure of dictatorial powers. Consequently, following the death of Hitler in 1945 and the subsequent capitulation of the German Armed Forces, the national political, judicial, administrative and constitutional instruments of both Nazi Germany and the Weimar Republic were understood as entirely defunct, such that a new West Germany could be established in a condition of constitutional nullity.{{citation|url=https://www.law.hku.hk/ccpl/Docs/JuttaLimbach.pdf|title=How a constitution can safeguard democracy:The German Experience|author=Jutta Limbach|publisher=Goethe-Institut|accessdate=7 December 2016|deadurl=yes|archiveurl=https://web.archive.org/web/20161220115032weblink|archivedate=20 December 2016|df=dmy-all}} Nevertheless, although the new West Germany rejected any continuity with both Nazi Germany and the Weimar Republic, it asserted its fundamental continuity with the 'overall' German state that was held to have embodied the unified German people since the Frankfurt Parliament of 1848, and which from 1871 had been represented within the German Reich; albeit that this overall state had become effectively dormant long before 8 May 1945.In 1949 with the continuation and aggravation of the Cold War (witness the Berlin Airlift of 1948–49), the two German states that were originated in the Western Allied and the Soviet Zones became known internationally as West Germany and East Germany. Commonly known in English as East Germany, the former Soviet Occupation Zone, eventually became the German Democratic Republic or GDR. In 1990 West Germany and East Germany jointly signed the Treaty on the Final Settlement With Respect to Germany; by which transitional status of Germany following World War II was definitively ended, the Four Allied powers relinquished their joint residual sovereign authority for Germany as a whole, the two parts of Germany confirmed their post-war external boundaries as final and irreversible (including the 1945 transfer of former German lands east of the Oder-Neisse line), and the Allied Powers confirmed their consent to German Reunification. From 3 October 1990, after the reformation of the GDR's , the East German states joined the Federal Republic.

NATO membership

(File:Deutschland Bundeslaender 1957.png|thumb|left|West Germany (blue) and West Berlin (yellow) after the accession of the Saarland in 1957 and before the five from the GDR and East Berlin joined in 1990)With territories and frontiers that coincided largely with the ones of old Medieval East Francia and the 19th-century Napoleonic Confederation of the Rhine, the Federal Republic of Germany, founded on 23 May 1949, under the terms of the Bonn–Paris conventions it obtained "the full authority of a sovereign state" on 5 May 1955 (although "full sovereignty" was not obtained until the Two Plus Four Agreement in 1990).{{refn |name=Sovereignty |group=lower-alpha |Detlef Junker of the states "In the October 23, 1954, Paris Agreements, Adenauer pushed through the following laconic wording: 'The Federal Republic shall accordingly [after termination of the occupation regime] have the full authority of a sovereign state over its internal and external affairs.' If this was intended as a statement of fact, it must be conceded that it was partly fiction and, if interpreted as wishful thinking, it was a promise that went unfulfilled until 1990. The Allies maintained their rights and responsibilities regarding Berlin and Germany as a whole, particularly the responsibility for future reunification and a future peace treaty".Detlef Junker (editor), Translated by Sally E. Robertson, The United States and Germany in the Era of the Cold War {{Webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20150923221838weblink |date=23 September 2015 }}, A Handbook Volume 1, 1945–1968 Series: Publications of the German Historical Institute {{ISBN|0-511-19218-5}}. See Section "The Presence of the Past" paragraph 9.}} The former occupying Western troops remained on the ground, now as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), which West Germany joined on 9 May 1955, promising to rearm itself soon.West Germany became a focus of the Cold War with its juxtaposition to East Germany, a member of the subsequently founded Warsaw Pact. The former capital, Berlin, had been divided into four sectors, with the Western Allies joining their sectors to form West Berlin, while the Soviets held East Berlin. West Berlin was completely surrounded by East German territory and had suffered a Soviet blockade in 1948–49, which was overcome by the Berlin airlift.File:Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F002449-0027, Bonn, Bundestag, Pariser Verträge, Adenauer.jpg|upright|thumb|Konrad AdenauerKonrad AdenauerThe outbreak of the Korean War in June 1950 led to U.S. calls to rearm West Germany to help defend Western Europe from the perceived Soviet threat. Germany's partners in the Coal and Steel Community proposed to establish a European Defence Community (EDC), with an integrated army, navy and air force, composed of the armed forces of its member states. The West German military would be subject to complete EDC control, but the other EDC member states (Belgium, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) would cooperate in the EDC while maintaining independent control of their own armed forces.Though the EDC treaty was signed (May 1952), it never entered into force. France's Gaullists rejected it on the grounds that it threatened national sovereignty, and when the French National Assembly refused to ratify it (August 1954), the treaty died. The French Gaullists and communists had killed the French government's proposal. Then other means had to be found to allow West German rearmament. In response, at the London and Paris Conferences, the Brussels Treaty was modified to include West Germany, and to form the Western European Union (WEU). West Germany was to be permitted to rearm (an idea many Germans rejected), and have full sovereign control of its military, called the . The WEU, however, would regulate the size of the armed forces permitted to each of its member states. Also, the German constitution prohibited any military action, except in the case of an external attack against Germany or its allies (). Also, Germans could reject military service on grounds of conscience, and serve for civil purposes instead.The three Western Allies retained occupation powers in Berlin and certain responsibilities for Germany as a whole. Under the new arrangements, the Allies stationed troops within West Germany for NATO defense, pursuant to stationing and status-of-forces agreements. With the exception of 55,000 French troops, Allied forces were under NATO's joint defense command. (France withdrew from the collective military command structure of NATO in 1966.)

Reforms during the 1960s

Konrad Adenauer was 73 years old when he became chancellor, and for this reason he was initially reckoned as a caretaker. However, he stayed in power for 14 years. The grand old man of German postwar politics had to be dragged—almost literally—out of office in 1963. In 1959 it was time to elect a new President and Adenauer decided that he would nominate Erhard, the architect of the economic miracle. Erhard was not enthusiastic, and to everybody's surprise, Adenauer decided at the age of 83 that he would take on the position. He apparently believed that this would allow him to dominate the scene for up to ten more years in spite of the growing mood for change. However, when his advisers informed him that the powers of the president were almost entirely ceremonial, he quickly lost interest.Informationen für Politisch Bildung Heft 258, 1998, p. 3. An alternative candidate was needed and eventually the Minister of Agriculture, Heinrich Lübke took on the task and was duly elected.In October 1962 the weekly news magazine published an analysis of the West German military defence. The conclusion was that there were several weaknesses in the system. Ten days after publication, the offices of in Hamburg were raided by the police and quantities of documents were seized. Chancellor Adenauer proclaimed in the that the article was tantamount to high treason and that the authors would be prosecuted. The editor/owner of the magazine, Rudolf Augstein spent some time in jail before the public outcry over the breaking of laws on freedom of the press became too loud to be ignored. The FDP members of Adenauer's cabinet resigned from the government, demanding the resignation of Franz Josef Strauss, Defence Minister, who had decidedly overstepped his competence during the crisis. Adenauer was still wounded by his brief run for president, and this episode damaged his reputation even further. He announced that he would step down in the fall of 1963. His successor was to be Ludwig Erhard.Informationen zur Politische Bildung 258, p. 5.In the early 1960s the rate of economic growth slowed down significantly. In 1962 growth rate was 4.7% and the following year, 2.0%. After a brief recovery, the growth rate slowed again into a recession, with no growth in 1967.A new coalition was formed to deal with this problem. Erhard stepped down in 1966 and was succeeded by Kurt Georg Kiesinger. He led a grand coalition between West Germany's two largest parties, the CDU/CSU and the Social Democratic Party (SPD). This was important for the introduction of new emergency acts: the grand coalition gave the ruling parties the two-thirds majority of votes required for their ratification. These controversial acts allowed basic constitutional rights such as freedom of movement to be limited in case of a state of emergency.File:Rudi.jpg|upright|thumb|Rudi DutschkeRudi DutschkeDuring the time leading up to the passing of the laws, there was fierce opposition to them, above all by the Free Democratic Party, the rising German student movement, a group calling itself ("Democracy in Crisis") and members of the Campaign against Nuclear Armament. A key event in the development of open democratic debate occurred in 1967, when the Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, visited West Berlin. Several thousand demonstrators gathered outside the Opera House where he was to attend a special performance. Supporters of the Shah (later known as ), armed with staves and bricks attacked the protesters while the police stood by and watched. A demonstration in the centre was being forcibly dispersed when a bystander named Benno Ohnesorg was shot in the head and killed by a plainclothes policeman. (It has now been established that the policeman, Kurras, was a paid spy of the East German security forces.) Protest demonstrations continued, and calls for more active opposition by some groups of students were made, which was declared by the press, especially the tabloid newspaper, as a massive disruption to life in Berlin, in a massive campaign against the protesters. Protests against the US intervention in Vietnam, mingled with anger over the vigour with which demonstrations were repressed led to mounting militance among the students at the universities in Berlin. One of the most prominent campaigners was a young man from East Germany called Rudi Dutschke who also criticised the forms of capitalism that were to be seen in West Berlin. Just before Easter 1968, a young man tried to kill Dutschke as he bicycled to the student union, seriously injuring him. All over West Germany, thousands demonstrated against the Springer newspapers which were seen as the prime cause of the violence against students. Trucks carrying newspapers were set on fire and windows in office buildings broken.Kraushaar, Frankfurter Schule und Studentenbewegung, Vol. 2 Rogner und Bernhard, 1998 Dokument Nr. 193, p. 356In the wakes of these demonstrations, in which the question of America's role in Vietnam began to play a bigger role, came a desire among the students to find out more about the role of the parent-generation in the Nazi era. The proceedings of the War Crimes Tribunal at Nuremberg had been widely publicised in Germany but until a new generation of teachers, educated with the findings of historical studies, could begin to reveal the truth about the war and the crimes committed in the name of the German people. One courageous attorney, Fritz Bauer patiently gathered evidence on the guards of the concentration camp and about twenty were put on trial in Frankfurt in 1963. Daily newspaper reports and visits by school classes to the proceedings revealed to the German public the nature of the concentration camp system and it became evident that the was of vastly greater dimensions than the German population had believed. (The term "Holocaust" for the systematic mass-murder of Jews first came into use in 1979, when an American mini-series with that name was shown on German television.) The processes set in motion by the Auschwitz trial reverberated decades later.The calling in question of the actions and policies of government led to a new climate of debate. The issues of emancipation, colonialism, environmentalism and grass roots democracy were discussed at all levels of society. In 1979 the environmental party, the Greens, reached the 5% limit required to obtain parliamentary seats in the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen provincial election. Also of great significance was the steady growth of a feminist movement in which women demonstrated for equal rights. Until 1977 a married woman had to have the permission of her husband if she wanted to take on a job or open a bank account.Reconciliation Policy in Germany 1998–2008, Construing the 'Problem' of the Incompatibility of Paid Employment and Care Work, by Cornelius Grebe; pg 92: "However, the 1977 reform of marriage and family law by Social Democrats and Liberals formally gave women the right to take up employment without their spouses' permission. This marked the legal end of the 'housewife marriage' and a transition to the ideal of 'marriage in partnership'." weblink {{Webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20170416053908weblink |date=16 April 2017 }} Further reforms in 1979 to parental rights law gave equal legal rights to the mother and the father, abolishing the legal authority of the father.Comparative Law: Historical Development of the Civil Law Tradition in Europe, Latin America, and East Asia, by John Henry Merryman, David Scott Clark, John Owen Haley, p. 542 Parallel to this, a gay movement began to grow in the larger cities, especially in West Berlin, where homosexuality had been widely accepted during the twenties in the Weimar Republic.File:RAF-Logo.svg|thumb|Logo of the Red Army FactionRed Army FactionAnger over the treatment of demonstrators following the death of Benno Ohnesorg and the attack on Rudi Dutschke, coupled with growing frustration over the lack of success in achieving their aims led to growing militance among students and their supporters. In May 1968, three young people set fire to two department stores in Frankfurt, they were brought to trial and made very clear to the court that they regarded their action as a legitimate act in what they described as the "struggle against imperialism".Kraushaar op.cit The student movement began to split into different factions, ranging from the unattached liberals to the Maoists and supporters of direct action in every form—the anarchists. Several groups set as their objective the aim of radicalising the industrial workers and taking an example from activities in Italy of the Red Brigades (), many students went to work in the factories, but with little or no success. The most notorious of the underground groups was the Red Army Faction which began by making bank raids to finance their activities and eventually went underground having killed a number of policemen, several bystanders and eventually two prominent West Germans, whom they had taken captive in order to force the release of prisoners sympathetic to their ideas. In the 1990s attacks were still being committed under the name "RAF". The last action took place in 1993 and the group announced it was giving up its activities in 1998. Evidence that the groups had been infiltrated by German Intelligence undercover agents has since emerged, partly through the insistence of the son of one of their prominent victims, the State Counsel Buback.WEB,weblink RAF: Gefangen in der Geschichte, Die Zeit, 13 August 2011, 25 May 2013,weblink" title="web.archive.org/web/20130508122346weblink">weblink 8 May 2013, no, dmy-all,

Political developments 1969–90

In the 1969 election, the SPD—headed by Willy Brandt—gained enough votes to form a coalition government with the FDP. Although Chancellor for only just over four years, Willy Brandt was one of the most popular politicians in the whole period. Brandt was a gifted speaker and the growth of the Social Democrats from there on was in no small part due to his personality. Brandt began a policy of rapprochement with West Germany's eastern neighbours, a policy opposed by the CDU. The issue of improving relations with Poland, Czechoslovakia and East Germany made for an increasingly aggressive tone in public debates but it was a huge step forward when Willy Brandt and the Foreign Minister, Walther Scheel (FDP) negotiated agreements with all three countries. (Moscow Agreement, August 1970, Warsaw Agreement, December 1970, Four Power Agreement over the status of West Berlin in 1971 and an agreement on relations between West and East Germany, signed in December 1972.)Informationen zur Politische Bildung Heft 258, p. 32 These agreements were the basis for a rapid improvement in the relations between east and west and led, in the long-term to the dismantlement of the Warsaw Treaty and the Soviet Union's control over Eastern Europe. Chancellor Brandt was forced to resign in May 1974, after Günter Guillaume, a senior member of his staff, was uncovered as a spy for the East German intelligence service, the . Brandt's contributions to world peace led to his nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1971.Finance Minister Helmut Schmidt (SPD) formed a coalition and he served as Chancellor from 1974 to 1982. Hans-Dietrich Genscher, a leading FDP official, became Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister. Schmidt, a strong supporter of the European Community (EC) and the Atlantic alliance, emphasized his commitment to "the political unification of Europe in partnership with the USA".BOOK, Max Otte, Jürgen Greve, 2000, A rising middle power?: German foreign policy in transformation, 1989–1999, In October 1982 the SPD–FDP coalition fell apart when the FDP joined forces with the CDU/CSU to elect CDU Chairman Helmut Kohl as Chancellor in a constructive vote of no confidence. Following national elections in March 1983, Kohl emerged in firm control of both the government and the CDU. The CDU/CSU fell just short of an absolute majority, due to the entry into the Bundestag of the Greens, who received 5.6% of the vote.In January 1987 the Kohl–Genscher government was returned to office, but the FDP and the Greens gained at the expense of the larger parties. Kohl's CDU and its Bavarian sister party, the CSU, slipped from 48.8% of the vote in 1983 to 44.3%. The SPD fell to 37%; long-time SPD Chairman Brandt subsequently resigned in April 1987 and was succeeded by Hans-Jochen Vogel. The FDP's share rose from 7% to 9.1%, its best showing since 1980. The Greens' share rose to 8.3% from their 1983 share of 5.6%.

Reunification

With the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe in 1989, symbolised by the opening of the Berlin Wall, there was a rapid move towards German reunification; and a final settlement of the post-war special status of Germany. Following democratic elections, East Germany declared its accession to the Federal Republic subject to the terms of the Unification Treaty between the two states; and then both West Germany and East Germany radically amended their respective constitutions in accordance with that Treaty's provisions. East Germany then dissolved itself, and its five post-war states () were reconstituted, along with the reunited Berlin which ended its special status and formed an additional . They formally joined the Federal Republic on 3 October 1990, raising the number of states from 10 to 16, ending the division of Germany. The expanded Federal Republic retained West Germany's political culture and continued its existing memberships in international organisations, as well as its Western foreign policy alignment and affiliation to Western alliances like NATO and the European Union.The official German reunification ceremony on 3 October 1990 was held at the building, including Chancellor Helmut Kohl, President Richard von Weizsäcker, former Chancellor Willy Brandt and many others. One day later, the parliament of the united Germany would assemble in an act of symbolism in the Reichstag building.However, at that time, the role of Berlin had not yet been decided upon. Only after a fierce debate, considered by many as one of the most memorable sessions of parliament, the concluded on 20 June 1991, with quite a slim majority, that both government and parliament should move to Berlin from Bonn.

West German "economic miracle"

The West German ("economic miracle", coined by The Times in 1950) was due to the economic aid provided by the United States and the Marshall Plan.{{citation needed|date=October 2018}} This improvement was sustained by the currency reform of 1948 which replaced the with the and halted rampant inflation. The Allied dismantling of the West German coal and steel industry finally ended in 1950.File:Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F038788-0006, Wolfsburg, VW Autowerk, Käfer.jpg|thumb|The Volkswagen BeetleVolkswagen BeetleAs demand for consumer goods increased after World War II, the resulting shortage helped overcome lingering resistance to the purchase of German products. At the time Germany had a large pool of skilled and cheap labour, partly as a result of the flight and expulsion of Germans from Central and Eastern Europe, which affected up to 16.5 million Germans. This helped Germany to more than double the value of its exports during the war. Apart from these factors, hard work and long hours at full capacity among the population and in the late 1950s and 1960s extra labour supplied by thousands of ("guest workers") provided a vital base for the economic upturn. This would have implications later on for successive German governments as they tried to assimilate this group of workers.David H Childs and Jeffrey Johnson, West Germany: Politics And Society, Croom Helm, 1982 weblink {{Webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20160519121934weblink |date=19 May 2016 }}From the late 1950s onwards, West Germany had one of the strongest economies in the world, almost as strong as before the Second World War. The East German economy showed a certain growth, but not as much as in West Germany, partly because of continued reparations to the USSR in terms of resources.In 1952 West Germany became part of the European Coal and Steel Community, which would later evolve into the European Union. On 5 May 1955 West Germany was declared to have the "authority of a sovereign state". The British, French and U.S. militaries remained in the country, just as the Soviet Army remained in East Germany. Four days after obtaining the "authority of a sovereign state" in 1955, West Germany joined NATO. The UK and the USA retained an especially strong presence in West Germany, acting as a deterrent in case of a Soviet invasion. In 1976 West Germany became one of the founding nations of the Group of Six (G6). In 1973, West Germany—home to roughly 1.26% of the world's population—featured the world's Protestant|DeepSkyBlue|49|49%}}{{bar percent|Roman Catholic|Purple|44.6|44.6%}}{{bar percent|Other & Unaffiliated|LightGrey|6.4|6.4%}}}}{| class="wikitable"! style="width:60pt;"|Year! style="width:120pt;"|EKD Protestant [%]! style="width:120pt;"|Roman Catholic [%]! style="width:120pt;"|Muslim [%]! style="width:120pt;"|None/other [%]Includes Protestants outside the .| 1950 50.6 45.8 - 3.6| 1961 51.1 45.5 - 3.5| 1970 49.0 44.6 1.3 3.9| 1980 42.3 43.3 - -| 1987 41.6 42.9 2.7 11.4

Position towards East Germany

File:Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F031406-0017, Erfurt, Treffen Willy Brandt mit Willi Stoph.jpg|thumb|Willy Brandt and Willi Stoph in ErfurtErfurt{{See also|German reunification}}The official position of West Germany concerning East Germany at the outset was that the West German government was the only democratically elected, and therefore the only legitimate, representative of the German people. According to the Hallstein Doctrine, any country (with the exception of the USSR) that recognised the authorities of the German Democratic Republic would not have diplomatic relations with West Germany.In the early 1970s, Willy Brandt's policy of "" led to a form of mutual recognition between East and West Germany. The Treaty of Moscow (August 1970), the Treaty of Warsaw (December 1970), the Four Power Agreement on Berlin (September 1971), the Transit Agreement (May 1972), and the Basic Treaty (December 1972) helped to normalise relations between East and West Germany and led to both German states joining the United Nations. The Hallstein Doctrine was relinquished, and West Germany ceased to claim an exclusive mandate for Germany as a whole.Following the Ostpolitik the West German view was that East Germany was a de facto government within a single German nation and a de jure state organisation of parts of Germany outside the Federal Republic. The Federal Republic continued to maintain that it could not within its own structures recognise the GDR de jure as a sovereign state under international law; while at the same time acknowledging that, within the structures of international law, the GDR was an independent sovereign state. By distinction, West Germany then viewed itself as being within its own boundaries, not only the de facto and de jure government, but also the sole de jure legitimate representative of a dormant "Germany as whole".{{citation|first=Peter E |last=Quint|title=The Imperfect Union; Constitutional Structures for German Unification |date=1991 |publisher=Princeton University Press|pages= 14]}} The two Germanys relinquished any claim to represent the other internationally; which they acknowledged as necessarily implying a mutual recognition of each other as both capable of representing their own populations de jure in participating in international bodies and agreements, such as the United Nations and the Helsinki Final Act.This assessment of the Basic Treaty was confirmed in a decision of the Federal Constitutional Court in 1973;{{citation|first=Donald P |last=Kommers|title=The Constitutional Jursiprudence of the Federal Republic of Germany |date=2012 |publisher=Duke University Press|pages= 308}}
"... the German Democratic Republic is in the international-law sense a State and as such a subject of international law. This finding is independent of recognition in international law of the German Democratic Republic by the Federal Republic of Germany. Such recognition has not only never been formally pronounced by the Federal Republic of Germany but on the contrary repeatedly explicitly rejected. If the conduct of the Federal Republic of Germany towards the German Democratic Republic is assessed in the light of its détente policy, in particular the conclusion of the Treaty as de facto recognition, then it can only be understood as de facto recognition of a special kind. The special feature of this Treaty is that while it is a bilateral Treaty between two States, to which the rules of international law apply and which like any other international treaty possesses validity, it is between two States that are parts of a still existing, albeit incapable of action as not being reorganized, comprehensive State of the Whole of Germany with a single body politic." {{citation|url=https://law.utexas.edu/transnational/foreign-law-translations/german/case.php?id=589|title=Texas Law: Foreign Law Translations 1973|publisher=University of Texas|accessdate=7 December 2016|archive-url=https://web.archive.org/web/20161220152049weblink|archive-date=20 December 2016|dead-url=no|df=dmy-all}}
The West German Constitution (, "Basic Law") provided two articles for the unification with other parts of Germany:
  • Article 23 provided the possibility for other parts of Germany to join the Federal Republic (under the constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany).
  • Article 146 provided the possibility for unification of all parts of Germany under a new constitution.
After the peaceful revolution of 1989 in East Germany, the Volkskammer of the GDR on 23 August 1990 declared the accession of East Germany to the Federal Republic under Article 23 of the Basic Law; and so initiated the process of reunification, to come into effect on 3 October 1990. Nevertheless, the act of reunification itself (with its many specific terms and conditions; including fundamental amendments to the West German Basic Law) was achieved constitutionally by the subsequent Unification Treaty of 31 August 1990; that is through a binding agreement between the former GDR and the Federal Republic now recognising each another as separate sovereign states in international law.{{citation|first=Donald P |last=Kommers|title=The Constitutional Jursiprudence of the Federal Republic of Germany |date=2012 |publisher=Duke University Press|pages= 309}} This treaty was then voted into effect on 20 September 1990 by both the Volkskammer and the Bundestag by the constitutionally required two-thirds majorities; effecting on the one hand, the extinction of the GDR and the re-establishment of on the territory of East Germany; and on the other, the agreed amendments to the Basic Law of the Federal Republic. Amongst these amendments was the repeal of the very Article 23 in respect of which the GDR had nominally declared its postdated accession to the Federal Republic.The two German states entered into a currency and customs union in July 1990, and on 3 October 1990, the German Democratic Republic dissolved and the re-established five East German (as well as a unified Berlin) joined the Federal Republic of Germany, bringing an end to the East-West divide.

Politics

Political life in West Germany was remarkably stable and orderly. The Adenauer era (1949–63) was followed by a brief period under Ludwig Erhard (1963–66) who, in turn, was replaced by Kurt Georg Kiesinger (1966–69). All governments between 1949 and 1966 were formed by the united caucus of the Christian-Democratic Union (CDU) and Christian Social Union (CSU), either alone or in coalition with the smaller Free Democratic Party (FDP) or other right-wing parties.File:Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F038505-0006, Bonn, Amtsantritt Kabinett Brandt bei Heinemann.jpg|thumb|The Brandt cabinet of 1969 on the steps of President Heinemanns's residence in Bonn, the Villa HammerschmidtVilla HammerschmidtKiesinger's 1966–69 "Grand Coalition" was between West Germany's two largest parties, the CDU/CSU and the Social Democratic Party (SPD). This was important for the introduction of new emergency acts—the Grand Coalition gave the ruling parties the two-thirds majority of votes required to see them in. These controversial acts allowed basic constitutional rights such as freedom of movement to be limited in case of a state of emergency.Leading up to the passing of the laws, there was fierce opposition to them, above all by the FDP, the rising German student movement, a group calling itself ("Democracy in a State of Emergency") and the labour unions. Demonstrations and protests grew in number, and in 1967 the student Benno Ohnesorg was shot in the head by a policeman. The press, especially the tabloid newspaper, launched a campaign against the protesters.By 1968 a stronger desire to confront the Nazi past had come into being. In the 1970s environmentalism and anti-nationalism became fundamental values among left-wing Germans. As a result, in 1979 the Greens were able to reach the 5% minimum required to obtain parliamentary seats in the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen state election, and with the foundation of the national party in 1980 developed into one of the most politically successful green movements in the world.Another result of the unrest in the 1960s was the founding of the Red Army Faction (RAF). The RAF was active from 1968, carrying out a succession of terrorist attacks in West Germany during the 1970s. Even in the 1990s, attacks were still being committed under the name RAF. The last action took place in 1993, and in 1998 the group announced it was ceasing activities.File:Bundesarchiv B 145 Bild-F073617-0004, Mainz, CDU-Bundesparteitag, Kohl.jpg|thumb|Helmut KohlHelmut KohlIn the 1969 election, the SPD gained enough votes to form a coalition government with the FDP. SPD leader and Chancellor Willy Brandt remained head of government until May 1974, when he resigned after the Guillaume Affair, in which a senior member of his staff was uncovered as a spy for the East German intelligence service, the . However the affair is widely considered to have been merely a trigger for Brandt's resignation, not a fundamental cause. Instead, Brandt, dogged by scandal relating to alcohol and depressionTalk by Hans-Jochen Vogel {{Webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20090901014759weblink |date=1 September 2009 }} on 21 October 2002Gregor Schöllgen: Willy Brandt. Die Biographie. Propyläen, Berlin 2001. {{ISBN|3-549-07142-6}} as well as the economic fallout of the 1973 oil crisis, almost seems simply to have had enough. As Brandt himself later said, "I was exhausted, for reasons which had nothing to do with the process going on at the time".quoted in: Gregor Schöllgen. Der Kanzler und sein Spion. {{Webarchive|url=https://web.archive.org/web/20090113174538weblink |date=13 January 2009 }} In: Die Zeit 2003, Vol. 40, 25 September 2003Finance Minister Helmut Schmidt (SPD) then formed a government, continuing the SPD–FDP coalition. He served as Chancellor from 1974 to 1982. Hans-Dietrich Genscher, a leading FDP official, was Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister in the same years. Schmidt, a strong supporter of the European Community (EC) and the Atlantic alliance, emphasized his commitment to "the political unification of Europe in partnership with the USA".The goals of SPD and FDP however drifted apart in the late 1970s and early 1980s. On 1 October 1982 the FDP joined forces with the CDU/CSU to elect CDU Chairman Helmut Kohl as Chancellor in a constructive vote of no confidence. Following national elections in March 1983, Kohl emerged in firm control of both the government and the CDU. The CDU/CSU fell just short of an absolute majority, because of the entry into the Bundestag of the Greens, who received 5.6% of the vote.In January 1987 the Kohl–Genscher government was returned to office, but the FDP and the Greens gained at the expense of the larger parties. The Social Democrats concluded that not only were the Greens unlikely to form a coalition, but also that such a coalition would be far from a majority. Neither condition changed until 1998.

Denazification

{{See also|Denazification|List of companies involved in the Holocaust}}In 1951 several laws were passed, ending the denazification. As a result, many people with a former Nazi past ended up again in the political apparatus of West Germany. West German President Walter Scheel and Chancellor Kurt Georg Kiesinger were both former members of the Nazi Party. In 1957, 77% of the West German Ministry of Justice's senior officials were former Nazi Party members.NEWS, Germany's post-war justice ministry was infested with Nazis protecting former comrades, study reveals,weblink The Daily Telegraph, 10 October 2016, 23 January 2019,weblink 23 January 2019, no, dmy-all, Konrad Adenauer's State Secretary Hans Globke had played a major role in drafting anti-semitic Nuremberg Race Laws in Nazi Germany.Tetens, T.H. The New Germany and the Old Nazis, New York: Random House, 1961 pages 37–40.

Culture

In many aspects, German culture continued in spite of the dictatorship and wartime. Old and new forms coexisted next to each other, and the American influence, already strong in the 1920s, grew.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}}

Sport

File:Stamp football WC 1974 deutsche bundespost.jpg|thumb|Postage stamps commemorating football's 1974 World Cup held in West Germany]]In the 20th century, association football became the largest sport in Germany. The Germany national football team, established in 1900, continued its tradition based in the Federal Republic of Germany, winning the 1954 FIFA World Cup in a stunning upset dubbed the miracle of Bern. Earlier, the German team was not considered part of the international top. The 1974 FIFA World Cup was held in West German cities and West Berlin. After having been beaten by their East German counterparts in the first round, the team of the German Football Association won the cup again, defeating the Netherlands 2–1 in the final. With the process of unification in full swing in the summer of 1990, the Germans won a third World Cup, with players that had been capped for East Germany not yet permitted to contribute. European championships have been won too, in 1972, 1980 and 1996.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}}After both Olympic Games of 1936 had been held in Germany, Munich was selected to host the 1972 Summer Olympics. These were also the first summer games in which the East Germans showed up with the separate flag and anthem of the GDR. Since the 1950s, Germany at the Olympics had been represented by a united team led by the pre-war German NOC officials as the IOC had denied East German demands for a separate team.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}}As in 1957, when the Saarland acceded, East German sport organisations ceased to exist in late 1990 as their subdivisions and their members joined their Western counterparts. Thus, the present German organisations and teams in football, Olympics and elsewhere are identical to those that had been informally called "West German" before 1991. The only differences were a larger membership and a different name used by some foreigners. These organisations and teams in turn mostly continued the traditions of those that represented Germany before the Second World War, and even the First World War, thus providing a century-old continuity despite political changes. On the other hand, the separate East German teams and organisations were founded in the 1950s; they were an episode lasting less than four decades, yet quite successful in that time.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}}As of 2012, West Germany have played a record 43 matches at the European Championships.BOOK, Guinness World Records 2014, Glenday, Craig, 2013 Guinness World Records Limited, 2013, 978-1-908843-15-9, 257,

Literary scene

Besides the interest in the older generation of writers, new authors emerged on the background of the experiences of war and after war period. Wolfgang Borchert, a former soldier who died young in 1947, is one of the best known representatives of the . Heinrich Böll is considered an observer of the young Federal Republic from the 1950s to the 1970s, and caused some political controversies because of his increasingly critical view on society.{{Citation needed|date=May 2015}} The Frankfurt Book Fair (and its Peace Prize of the German Book Trade) soon developed into a regarded institution. Exemplary for West Germany's literature are – among others – Siegfried Lenz (with The German Lesson) and Günter Grass (with The Tin Drum and The Flounder).

Geographical distribution of government

In West Germany, most of the political agencies and buildings were located in Bonn, while the German Stock Market was located in Frankfurt am Main, which became the economic center. The judicial branch of both the German Federal Constitutional Court () and the highest Court of Appeals, were located in Karlsruhe.The West German government was known to be much more decentralised than its state socialist East German counterpart, the former being a federal state and the latter a unitary one. Whilst East Germany was divided into 15 administrative districts (), which were merely local branches of the national government, West Germany was divided into states () with independently elected state parliaments and control of the , the second legislative chamber of the Federal Government.

Present geographical and political terminology

Today, North Rhine-Westphalia is often considered to be Western Germany in geographical terms. When distinguishing between former West Germany and former East Germany as parts of present-day unified Germany, it has become most common to refer to the (old states) and the (new states), although and are still heard as well.

See also

Notes

{{notelist}}

References

{{reflist}}

Further reading

  • Bark, Dennis L., and David R. Gress. A History of West Germany Vol 1: From Shadow to Substance, 1945–1963 (1992); {{ISBN|978-0-631-16787-7}}; vol 2: Democracy and Its Discontents 1963–1988 (1992) {{ISBN|978-0-631-16788-4}}
  • Berghahn, Volker Rolf. Modern Germany: society, economy, and politics in the twentieth century (1987) ACLS E-book online
  • Hanrieder, Wolfram F. Germany, America, Europe: Forty Years of German Foreign Policy (1989) {{ISBN|0-300-04022-9}}
  • Jarausch, Konrad H. After Hitler: Recivilizing Germans, 1945–1995 (2008)
  • Junker, Detlef, ed. The United States and Germany in the Era of the Cold War (2 vol 2004), 150 short essays by scholars covering 1945–1990 excerpt and text search vol 1; excerpt and text search vol 2
  • MacGregor, Douglas A The Soviet-East German Military Alliance New York, Cambridge University Press, 1989.
  • Main, Steven J. "The Soviet Occupation of Germany. Hunger, Mass Violence and the Struggle for Peace, 1945–1947." Europe-Asia Studies (2014) 668 pp. 1380–1382.
  • Maxwell, John Allen. "Social Democracy in a Divided Germany: Kurt Schumacher and the German Question, 1945-52." Ph.D dissertation, West Virginia University, 1969.
  • Schwarz, Hans-Peter. Konrad Adenauer: A German Politician and Statesman in a Period of War, Revolution and Reconstruction (2 vol 1995) excerpt and text search vol 2; also full text vol 1; and full text vol 2
  • Smith, Gordon, ed, Developments in German Politics (1992) {{ISBN|0-8223-1266-2}}, broad survey of reunified nation
  • Smith, Helmut Walser, ed. The Oxford Handbook of Modern German History (2011), excerpt, pp. 593–753.
  • Weber, Jurgen. Germany, 1945–1990 (Central European University Press, 2004) weblink" title="web.archive.org/web/20120210024250weblink">online edition

Primary sources

  • Beate Ruhm Von Oppen, ed. Documents on Germany under Occupation, 1945–1954 (Oxford University Press, 1955) online

External links

{{Germany topics}}{{Authority control}}

- content above as imported from Wikipedia
- "West Germany" does not exist on GetWiki (yet)
- time: 9:03pm EDT - Wed, Jul 17 2019
[ this remote article is provided by Wikipedia ]
LATEST EDITS [ see all ]
GETWIKI 09 JUL 2019
Eastern Philosophy
History of Philosophy
GETWIKI 09 MAY 2016
GETWIKI 18 OCT 2015
M.R.M. Parrott
Biographies
GETWIKI 20 AUG 2014
GETWIKI 19 AUG 2014
CONNECT