The term dismantling refers to the dismantling and removal of means of production (e.g. industrial plants ) or other fixed installations (e.g. railway superstructure or contact line material ) by a war party in the occupied territory or country of an opponent. Dismantling can take place during a war or after a war. In the past, dismantling (as well as contributions and requisitions ) were often declared as compensation for the dismantling war party.
Germany after World War II
After the Second World War , the occupation zones were dismantled. The victorious powers, especially the Soviet Union , sought reparations to make amends for the damage they had suffered. In addition, Germany was supposed to be militarily weakened by the smashing of its armaments industry , thus making another war of aggression impossible. According to the Potsdam Agreement , there were dismantling deliveries from the Ruhr area to the Soviet zone . The dismantling of German industrial plants was one of the five points of the Potsdam Conference. In return, agricultural products were to be delivered from the Soviet zone to the western zones , where many people were starving. Much of the dismantled facilities in the Ruhr area and the Soviet zone were transported to the Soviet Union.
The dismantling of industrial facilities in the US-American zone began according to an industrial plan drawn up in March 1946, according to which 1,600 factories were to be dismantled in order to reduce production levels to around 63% of the 1938 value. A year later, however, the Marshall Plan was announced and West Germany would be accepted as one of the recipient countries of the European Recovery Program (ERP). In the Bizone and later Trizone , the Truman Doctrine put an end to the policy of dismantling. The new industrial plan of 1947 provided for industrial capacities to be increased to almost the pre-war year. That is why dismantling was expected to end in West Germany. In October 1947, however, a dismantling list was issued again, which still included 682 companies. As a result, dismantling and reassembly came alongside each other in the years that followed, and businesses were increasingly rebuilt.
The dismantling plans were last revised in the Petersberg Agreement of November 22, 1949 and at the end of 1950 the dismantling in the Federal Republic was stopped. The total value of the dismantled facilities was estimated at up to DM 5.4 billion for West Germany , and up to DM 5 billion for the Soviet Occupation Zone (SBZ) and GDR .
In the Soviet Zone, gross fixed assets in 1948 were 25.7% lower than in 1936, while in 1945 - despite war damage - they were 23% higher than before the war. Production capacities even fell to 70%, as the lack of low-quality components could cause an entire production plant to come to a standstill. Only about one fifth of the decrease of 49 percentage points (from 123% to 74%) between 1945 and 1948 can be explained by depreciation. Among other things, the Soviet Union dismantled four fifths of the capacities in the vehicle industry and three quarters of iron production in its zone of occupation .
- Lutz Budraß , Stefan Prott: Dismantling and conversion. For the integration of arms-industrial capacities in technology-political strategies in post-war Germany . In: Johannes Bähr, Dietmar Petzina (Hrsg.): Innovation behavior and decision-making structures. Comparative studies on economic development in divided Germany 1945–1999 (= Writings on Economic and Social History, Volume 48). Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1996, ISBN 3-428-08840-9 , pp. 303-340.
- Gustav W. Harmssen:
- Reparations, social product, standard of living , F.-Trüjen-Verlag, Bremen 1948
- On the evening of the dismantling (1951)
- Wilhelm Hasenack : Company dismantling as a form of reparation (1948)
- Nicholas Balabkins: Germany Under Direct Controls; Economic Aspects Of Industrial Disarmament 1945-1948 , Rutgers University Press, (1964)
- Hubertus Seifert (1971): The Reparations of Japan: A Contribution to the Change in the Reparations Problem and to the Economic Development of Japan after 1945 . West German publishing house .
- Images: June 7, 1949 - Ruhr protest against dismantling
- Klaus Jochen Arnold : Dismantling in the Soviet Occupation Zone and Berlin 1945 to 1948 , Brandenburgisches Landeshauptarchiv, Potsdam 2007. PDF, 467 pp.
- library.wisc.edu (PDF; 1 MB)
- Wolfgang Benz : From occupation to the Federal Republic. Stages in the founding of a state 1946–1949 . Frankfurt 1989, ISBN 3-596-24311-4 , pp. 80ff.
- André Steiner: From plan to plan. An economic history of the GDR . Construction Verlag, Berlin 2007, ISBN 978-3-7466-8153-5 , p. 31f.
- Frederick H. Gareau: Morgenthau's Plan for Industrial Disarmament in Germany . In: The Western Political Quarterly , Vol. 14, No. 2 (June 1961), p. 531, ( JSTOR )
- Table of contents, excerpt