Allied Control Council
The Allied Control Council was after the Second World War by the occupying powers as the top occupation authority for Germany west of the Oder-Neisse line used and exercised the highest governance from. Its seat was in Berlin . It consisted of the military governors of the four zones of occupation in Germany and issued so-called control council laws and other directives that applied to all zones of occupation and that had to be decided unanimously. Their execution was at the discretion of the military governors; in the event of irreconcilable differences in the Control Council, each of them had the right to make their own decisions in their zone on the instructions of their government. That is why the victorious powers had a “ right of veto ”, as it were, in questions of their common German policy , which allowed each occupying power to find its own way in their zone.
The Allied Control Council met for the first time on July 30, 1945, during the Potsdam Conference . The legal basis of his work was the London Agreement on Control Institutions in Germany of November 14, 1944 and the Berlin Four Power Declaration of June 5, 1945. His task was to work out "guiding principles for the economic demilitarization of Germany".
After the Soviet representative had left the Control Council on March 20, 1948 and the Allied Command in June 1948 against the backdrop of the beginning of the Cold War , the Control Council practically ceased its activities, which led to the division of Germany the following year .
The Allied Control Council did not meet again as sovereign over Germany until 1990; it was the last time because in the course of German reunification in October 1990 the four victorious powers suspended their rights and responsibilities for Germany and Berlin until the two plus four treaty was ratified .
The main allies of the anti-Hitler coalition , beginning with the Tehran conference at the end of 1943, met several times at different levels in order to reach an agreement on how to proceed after the victory over the National Socialist German Reich . The participants in the Casablanca conference had called for an unconditional surrender and the Yalta Declaration resulted in a division into zones of occupation and coordinated administration and control by a central control commission . After the military collapse and the unconditional surrender of the German Wehrmacht in the night of May 8th to 9th, 1945, the executive government of the Reich under Karl Dönitz and Johann Ludwig Graf Schwerin von Krosigk was arrested in the special area Mürwik .
For Germany, the governments of the United Kingdom , the United States of America and the Soviet Union as well as the Provisional Government of the French Republic officially assumed supreme governmental power in Germany with the Berlin Declaration on June 5, 1945 ; In addition, they established the control procedure in Germany and on top of that "within its borders as they existed on December 31, 1937 ", the four zones of occupation or, for Berlin, the four sectors . The determination of Germany's final borders (or any part of it), however, as well as the fixation of its legal position, should be a matter for a later peace settlement, which was then finally expressed in the Two-Plus-Four Treaty .
For occupied Austria , where the boards of the (re) established parties SPÖ , ÖVP and KPÖ on April 27 in a joint proclamation on the independence of Austria , referring to the Moscow Declaration, declared the " Anschluss " null and void and Austria independent Having formed a provisional state government , an agreement on Allied control was signed on July 4th and an Allied Commission was established.
In accordance with the agreements on the control system in Germany that the European Advisory Commission formed by the USA, the Soviet Union and Great Britain signed on September 12 and November 14, 1944 ( Agreement on Control Institutions in Germany ) and which were signed in the summer of 1945 at the Potsdam Conference were confirmed, the supreme power of government, both within the zones of occupation and Germany as a whole, should be exercised by the commanders-in-chief of the four powers. Accordingly, these were the representatives of the victorious powers in the Allied Control Council: Marshal Zhukov for the USSR , General Eisenhower for the USA , Field Marshal Montgomery for Great Britain and General de Lattre de Tassigny for France .
On July 30, 1945 - on the sidelines of this conference - the Control Council met for a constituent session. The rules of procedure stipulated that a plenary meeting should take place every ten days (i.e. three times a month) and that a coordination committee should prepare the meetings in the meantime . In addition, it had to decide by consensus , i.e. unanimously, and was supposed to ensure a jointly coordinated policy with regard to the whole of Germany, the economic unity and the future of Germany, while each of the powers acted completely independently for the administration in their respective occupation zone.
The Allied Control Council had its seat in the building of the Prussian Chamber Court on Kleistpark in Berlin-Schöneberg , which was temporarily used by the People's Court .
Tasks and organs
The American zone of occupation was administered by the Office of Military Government for Germany (US) (OMGUS) based in Berlin and Frankfurt am Main, the British by the Control Commission for Germany / British Element , the Soviet by the Soviet Military Administration (both Berlin) and the French from the central military government ("Gouvernement militaire de la zone française d'occupation") in Baden-Baden. After the decisions at the Potsdam Conference , each of the four powers had freedom of political action in their zone.
The Control Council should exercise supreme governance for Germany as a whole. It was occupied by the commanders in chief of the four zones of occupation. The coordinating committee consisted of their deputies Lucius D. Clay for the USA, Brian H. Robertson for Great Britain, Wassili Sokolowski for the USSR and Louis Koeltz for France.
The tasks of the control council were according to Art. 3 of the Agreement on Control Institutions in Germany:
- to ensure the appropriate uniformity of action by the commanders in chief in their respective zones of occupation;
- To draw up plans and to make decisions by mutual agreement on essential military, political, economic and other questions concerning Germany as a whole, in accordance with the instructions given to each commander-in-chief by his government;
- to monitor the German central administration, which acts according to the instructions of the Control Council and which will be responsible for ensuring that its demands are met;
- to lead the administration of Greater Berlin through appropriate organs.
The Control Council should meet once within ten days and at the request of one of its members at any time. The Control Council's decisions had to be unanimous. The control council was chaired in turn by each of its four members.
A permanent coordination committee was subordinated to the control council, which consisted of one representative each of the four commanders-in-chief, not below the rank of general or the corresponding rank of the navy or air force. The tasks of the coordination committee included according to Art. 5 of the Agreement on Control Institutions in Germany:
- the execution of the decisions of the Supervisory Board;
- the constant monitoring and control of the activities of the German central administration and the German institutions;
- coordinating ongoing problems that require uniform action in all four zones;
- the preliminary examination and preparation of all questions submitted by the individual commander-in-chief for the control council.
The coordination committee acted through the control staff, which formed departments for the army, navy, air force, transport, politics, economics, finance, reparations and payments to the occupying powers as well as restitutions, internal affairs and communications, the legal system, prisoners of war and displaced persons, work. The individual departments were headed by a body of four representatives (one from each power). The tasks of the four department heads, who should act together, included Art. 6 of the Agreement on Control Institutions in Germany:
- the exercise of supervision over the relevant German ministries and German central offices;
- acting as advisor to the Control Council and - if necessary - participating in its meetings;
- the transmission of the decisions of the Control Council communicated by the coordination committee to the German central administration.
Greater Berlin was administered by the Allied Command under the general direction of the Control Council.
By 1948, the Allied Control Council passed over one hundred proclamations , laws , orders , directives and instructions for the four zones of occupation in over 80 meetings .
In the Control Council Directive No. 10 of September 22, 1945, the Control Council described the different forms of its legislation and their meaning:
- Proclamations proclaim matters of particular importance to the occupying powers or the German people.
- Laws are enacted for general application, unless they expressly determine otherwise.
- Orders are issued if the Control Council has to make demands on Germany and these are not made in the form of a law.
- Directives are used to publicize the general intentions or decisions of the Control Board in administrative matters.
- Instructions make immediate demands on a particular authority.
Proclamations and laws were signed by the members of the control council, orders by the members of the control council or the coordination committee, directives and instructions by the members of the coordination committee. In the absence of a member of the Control Council or the Coordination Committee, his deputy could sign for him.
The files were in accordance with of Directive No. 11 of September 22, 1945 published in the Official Gazette of the Control Council in English, Russian and French with German translation. However, the validity did not depend on their publication in German.
With effect from May 1, 1947, Directive No. 10 was replaced by Control Council Directive No. 51 of April 29, 1947. The Control Council then only exercised its legislative activity in the form of proclamations, laws and orders. Proclamations continued to announce matters or actions of particular importance to the German people. Laws dealt with important matters of great importance that were of permanent or temporary applicability or that repealed, changed or temporarily suspended existing legal provisions. As a rule, laws were binding for everyone residing in Germany. Orders dealt with matters of limited applicability or of a temporary nature. Orders were also usually binding for all persons residing in Germany.
Laws and orders were the only acts of legislation that could contain criminal provisions with immediate effect. If directives contained such penal provisions, they had to be put into effect by the zone commanders in implementing regulations. The Control Council could also issue directives and “approved documents” to make its decisions public, but these were not acts of legislation.
The first two laws concerned the repeal of National Socialist law and the dissolution and liquidation of Nazi organizations . Orders No. 3 and No. 4 , issued in 1946 , ordered the segregation and destruction of literature and works of a National Socialist and militarist character, as well as a duty to register and work for all persons of working age. In addition to provisional demarcation (e.g. Oder-Neisse Line ) and an attempt to legitimize expulsions and resettlements, economic demilitarization was particularly relevant for the work of the Control Council. The economic demilitarization , coupled with reparations (in the form of the dismantling and removal of industrial plants) was carried out autonomously by each occupying power (especially by the Soviet Union and France), without a uniform policy of the Control Council.
Change in occupation policy and effects on the activities of the Control Council in Germany
The growing East-West conflict between the Soviet Union and the Western powers, for example in the Middle East and Asia , as well as the Soviet policy of building satellite states (the so-called Eastern Bloc ), led the Western powers to distrust Soviet policy in Germany .
Although the previous type of economic management and the practice of withdrawing reparations were accepted in the Soviet and French zones , there were new demands, mainly from the USA in the Control Council, to preserve Germany's economic unity. These were rejected by the USSR in July 1946 as an attempt to exert influence. Whether this already represented the failure of the Control Council de facto may be controversial. The economic practice changed by the USSR in its zone speaks against this with the establishment of Soviet joint-stock companies (SAG) and the cessation of the dismantling of production facilities. In the longer term, reparations payments should be better secured with an economic build-up than with a reduction, which can be seen in the better position of SAGs compared to the rest of the economy, from provision up to wages. At this point in time, the policy of the Soviet Union was not yet aimed at separating or otherwise separating its zone, but rather to gain influence beyond the Soviet zone.
But it was probably not only the growing East-West conflict that divided the victorious powers that had once supported each other and made the work of the Control Council more difficult. Because Great Britain had increasing economic problems to finance the occupation costs and, like the US-American representatives in the parliaments, had to justify these high costs. Upcoming elections in the western democracies and politicians who wanted to be re-elected had a not inconsiderable contribution to the decisions, as in many events in world history. Thus the interest of Great Britain and the USA in a more rapid termination of the occupation grew. France, which was much more economically troubled by the war than the other two Western Allies, needed the reparations more urgently and, like the Soviet Union, did not want them for the same reasons. It should also be remembered that despite or because of (there are two irreconcilable political opinions) of the Treaty of Versailles, another world war could not be prevented, whereupon France could not be interested in an early end of the occupation.
As a result, the USA and Great Britain, excluding France and the USSR, began to force economic amalgamation between their zones. This culminated in the contractual agreement of this first partial amalgamation of December 2, 1946, through the establishment of a British-American bizone on January 1, 1947. That even the Western powers were now no longer capable of unity, shows the fact that France was only its zone on April 8, 1949, shortly before the founding of the Federal Republic of Germany . The last attempt to balance the different ideas about politics in Germany failed with the unsuccessful London Foreign Ministers' Conference in November / December 1947.
The Control Council Act No. 46 of February 25, 1947 was passed with a further joint resolution . With this the state of Prussia was dissolved. It is the last decision to be classified as politically significant. The predominantly administrative character of the last decisions that followed was also reflected in the increasing impotence of the top administration of the four occupying powers in the face of the increasingly discrepancies among themselves. The Control Council Act No. 62 passed on February 20, 1948 and entered into force on March 20 of the same year was the last joint legal act of the Council. Also adjourned on March 20, 1948, i.e. H. In protest against the London Six Power Conference and the establishment of the Brussels Pact , the Soviet Union blocked the decision-making of the Allied Control Council, which only convened again in 1990 and was therefore without function for more than five decades. In the opinion of the USSR, at the London Conference, if Soviet representatives were not invited, the Western powers not only openly discussed the creation of a German separate state, but also expressly recommended this state and its future integration in Western Europe in the decision-making process, but not in the Control Council either reported. In accordance with these violations, the USSR justified its reaction with the postponement.
With the carefully planned and coordinated currency reform in the three western zones on the night of June 20-21, 1948 and the subsequent currency reform in the Soviet Occupation Zone (SBZ) from June 24-28, the economic division of Germany into a central administrative economy in the East and a social market economy in the West deepened and the division of Germany evident, even before a German state was even allowed. The affixing of postage stamp-like adhesive labels as a temporary measure for new money shows that the German Economic Commission of the Soviet Occupation Zone, which was set up by the Soviet occupying power, had not planned such a drastic measure as a currency reform.
The attempt of the Soviet Union to incorporate West Berlin under its rule with the Berlin blockade failed. As a consequence, the Soviet Union concentrated on securing the dictatorship of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED). The parties in the Soviet zone were to block parties converted and administrations and parliaments into line .
Since it was obvious that the Soviet Union was not ready to allow all-German democratic representation of the people, the western military governors , whose representatives were members of the Control Council, unilaterally handed over the Frankfurt documents to the eleven Prime Ministers of the western zones on July 1, 1948 with the request to form a constituent assembly , to call for a review of the national borders within the western zones and to announce an occupation statute . Conversely, the SED tried to counterbalance it through the People's Congress and the People's Council .
The only actual allied tasks remained the flight control by the Allied Aviation Security Center ( Air Safety Control , since 1945 to 1990, at Kleistpark) and the guarding of the war crimes prison in Berlin-Spandau , which is under four-power administration , in which Rudolf Hess was the last until 1987 the Nazi war criminal convicted in the Nuremberg trial of major war criminals was in custody.
As part of the precipitous events of reunification , the ambassadors of the Four Powers met on December 11, 1989 in the building of the Allied Control Council in Berlin. The Control Council was then convened one last time by France in 1990. Nothing is known about the content of the deliberations.
During the subsequent division of Germany , the sovereignty of the two German states remained restricted. For the Federal Republic of Germany and West Berlin , the Allied High Commission , or AHK for short, was the supreme control body of the three Western powers with three High Commissioners (also known as "High Commissioners") from 1949 to 1955. This was dissolved with the dissolution of the occupation statute through the entry into force of the Paris Treaties in 1955, but the Allied right of reservation continued to restrict state sovereignty.
The Soviet Military Administration in Germany (SMAD) to 1949 and the People's Control Commission (SCC) were the monitoring and management institution of the Soviet occupying power to guide the SBZ or later, the German Democratic Republic until 28 May 1953. After the death of Joseph Stalin was the SKK converted into the "High Commission of the USSR in Germany". General Chuikov's political advisor at the time, Vladimir S. Semyonov (later Deputy Foreign Minister of the Soviet Union), was appointed High Commissioner.
The Allied Control Council was not formally dissolved until 1990 by the Two-Plus-Four Treaty, which established Germany's complete sovereignty and paved the way for the unification of the two German states . With the termination of the "corresponding, related four-sided agreements, resolutions and practices" and the dissolution of "all corresponding institutions of the Four Powers", the Control Council and the Berlin headquarters then formally ceased to exist.
The Allied Museum in Berlin documents the commitment and role of the Western Allies in Germany and West Berlin from 1945 to 1994.
- Elisabeth Kraus: Ministries for all of Germany? The Allied Control Council and the question of all-German central administration (= studies on contemporary history. Vol. 37). Oldenbourg, Munich 1990, ISBN 3-486-55661-4 .
- Gunther Mai: The Allied Control Council in Germany 1945–1948. Allied unity - German division? (= Sources and representations on contemporary history. Vol. 36). Oldenbourg, Munich 1995, ISBN 3-486-56123-5 . ( limited preview in Google Book search)
- Deutsches Historisches Museum: Proclamation No. 1 from General Eisenhower to the German people, March 1945
- The Allied Museum e. V., Berlin-Zehlendorf
- Proclamation No. 1 of the Allied Control Council: Establishment of the Control Council of August 30, 1945
- Texts of the Control Council laws and other proclamations of the Control Council
- Digitized control council legislation
- Wolfgang Benz : Establishment of occupation , Federal Agency for Civic Education , April 11, 2005
- ↑ Agreement on control facilities in Germany of November 14, 1944, in: verassungen.ch, accessed on August 29, 2018.
- ^ The Control Council meets ... , Die Zeit , September 6, 1951.
- ↑ Frankfurter Rundschau of June 22, 1990; Declaration by the Four Powers on the suspension of their rights of reservation over Berlin and Germany as a whole from October 1, 1990.
- ↑ Statement by the governments of the United Kingdom, the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics as well as the Provisional Government of the French Republic on the control procedure in Germany (June 5, 1945), in: documentArchiv.de
- ↑ Statement by the governments of the United Kingdom, the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics as well as the Provisional Government of the French Republic on the zones of occupation in Germany (June 5, 1945) , in: documentArchiv.de
- ^ Allied occupation: Allied Control Council , Lebendiges Museum Online - LeMO , accessed on March 9, 2015.
- ^ Wolfgang Benz: Establishment of occupation rule , Federal Agency for Civic Education, April 11, 2005.
- ^ Peter Graf von Kielmansegg : After the catastrophe. A history of divided Germany , Siedler, Berlin 2000, ISBN 978-3-88680-329-3 , p. 48.
- ↑ Link collection on verfassungen.de, accessed on February 20, 2019.
- ↑ Directive No. 10 on the Legislative Methods of the Control Council
- ↑ See Official Gazettes of the Control Council No. 1, 2, 3 and 5 , in: archive.org, accessed on August 24, 2018.
- ↑ Control Council Directive No. 51. Legislative acts and other acts of the Control Council of April 29, 1947. In: verfassungen.de. Retrieved June 20, 2019 .
- ↑ Cf. Gerhard Keiderling: The end of the Allied Control Council . In: Berlin monthly magazine ( Luisenstädtischer Bildungsverein ) . Issue 3, 1998, ISSN 0944-5560 , p. 42-46 ( luise-berlin.de ). Shorthand minutes of the 82nd Control Council meeting. In: Berlin. Sources and documents 1945–1951, 2nd half volume , ed. on behalf of the Senate of Berlin, Berlin (West) 1964, p. 1431 ff.
- ^ Soviet declaration regarding the adjournment of the Control Council meetings of March 20, 1948
- ↑ Andreas Rödder : Germany united fatherland. The story of the reunification. CH Beck, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-406-56281-5 , p. 148 .
- ↑ Article 7 (1) of the treaty on the final regulation with regard to Germany ; BGBl. II 1990, pp. 1317 ff. (1324).