Forced unification of the SPD and KPD to form the SED
The unification of the KPD and SPD to form the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED) in the Soviet occupation zone and the four-sector city of Berlin in 1946 is also referred to as a forced unification because it came about under massive pressure from the Soviet occupation authorities . As part of this association, social democrats who resisted were imprisoned in camps and prisons or subjected to other physical or psychological pressure.
The term forced unification of the Communist and Social Democratic parties was coined in 1946 by Gustav Dahrendorf .
In the official GDR historiography it was asserted that the founding of the SED was a "voluntary amalgamation" and the "legend of compulsory union" was rejected. The “unity of the masses of members” is not taken into account.
West German historians have also rejected the term “forced union” as too one-sided. Christoph Kleßmann stated :
"Nevertheless, the on 21./22. April 1946, the merger of the KPD and SPD in the Eastern Zone did not simply classify as a 'forced merger'. The elements of coercion were serious and ranged from indirect pressure by the SMAD, a ban on gatherings, and targeted support for those in favor of unity to massive intimidation and arrest of unity opponents. In addition, however, there was still a broad, uniform trend, especially in the factories, so that the ZA who was unwilling to merge would eventually slip out of control and end up in isolation. "
Siegfried Suckut summarized West German research up to 1990 in his volume "Parties in the Soviet Zone / GDR 1945–1952":
“Almost all [West German] authors assumed that there had been forms of massive coercion, especially by the occupying power, and voluntary readiness among the Social Democrats in the East. Because of this finding, many spoke of 'compulsory unification' in order to make it clear that the pressure of the victorious power was the decisive factor in achieving the founding of the SED. Others did not use the term because it did not cover the entire range of motivation among the members of the SPD in the Soviet Zone, but nevertheless agreed to this weighting. "
For Günther Heydemann , the controversy is not over even after the turn of the millennium:
“However, the question of whether and to what extent the KPD and the SPD were a 'compulsory union' or a voluntary union - or both - has remained controversial to this day. [...] All in all, it can be considered certain that the term “forced union” does not fully do justice to the historical facts. Undoubtedly, social democratic approval at the level of the central committee and in some of the state boards was increasingly waning, but at the local and communal level and not least in many companies it was partially retained. Here the association was sometimes even anticipated, which created a pressure to conform that should not be underestimated. "
“For a general assessment,“ compulsory union ”is the correct term. He makes it clear that there was no alternative for the Social Democrats in the Soviet Zone at the time. They found themselves in a forced situation, because under Soviet occupation they had no free decision as to whether they wanted to continue the SPD there or not. "
According to Ilko-Sascha Kowalczuk , the unification only came about through the pressure exerted by the Soviet occupation forces on leading Social Democrats.
Helga Grebing , a member of the historical commission at the SPD party executive, wrote in 2007 that the “term forced union [...] does not really reflect the complexity of the processes that brought about the unity party”. In their opinion, a concrete description of these processes is necessary instead. Since the opening of the Russian archives, a number of monographs have been available to describe these processes. They unanimously come to the conclusion that the unification of the two parties did not result in a democratic formation of will, and that the focus was not on genuine German interests.
"The political course for the end of social democracy in eastern Germany was set in Moscow in January 1946."
In the circles of the workers' parties SPD and KPD there were different interpretations of the reasons for the rise of the National Socialists and their electoral successes. While some of the Social Democrats thought of the devastating role of the Communists in the final phase of the Weimar Republic , when the KPD insulted the Social Democrats as " social fascists ", others believed that the National Socialists' seizure of power was due to the division of the labor movement into the SPD and KPD as a result of the first World War has been made possible.
In 1945 there were calls for a united workers' party in both the SPD and the KPD and among their supporters. A merger should be prepared through cooperation, discussions and the dissemination of common political ideas. The Soviet Military Administration (SMAD) was initially against it because it assumed that under their guidance the KPD would develop into the strongest political force in the Soviet zone of occupation . The aim was to transfer the rulership and social system of the Soviet Union to Germany . The leadership of the KPD was initially against it.
In the course of 1945 the reprisals of the SMAD ensured that the Social Democrats were more hostile to the association. The outcome of the elections in Hungary and Austria in November 1945, and especially the poor performance of the Communist parties, made it necessary for the KPD to rapidly change its strategy from November 1945 onwards. Both Stalin and Ulbricht recognized the "danger to Austria" and launched a forced unity campaign in November 1945, which was intended to secure the KPD's claim to leadership.
"In this situation, the KPD went over from November 1945 to force a decision for the Unity Party by massively getting involved in the disputes within the social democratic executive boards at all levels."
Since then, it has been mainly the Communists who have pushed for rapid unification.
Preparation of the union
Under the considerable pressure of the Soviet occupying power and the KPD leadership, as well as with the support of some leading Social Democrats, working groups and committees were formed at all levels of the two parties, the declared aim of which was organizational unification. At the beginning of 1946, many Social Democrats unwilling to form unity were arrested in all the countries of the Soviet occupation zone (SBZ). Social Democrats who opposed unification were blackmailed and threatened. Otto Grotewohl told the head of the political department of the British military government, Christopher Steel , at the beginning of February 1946 that the Social Democrats “were being tickled by Russian bayonets and that their organization in the countries had been completely undermined. Men who had assured him four days ago that they were determined to offer resistance now begged him to get the matter over with ”. The SPD chairman Erich Ollenhauer estimated in 1961 that “between December 1945 and April 1946 at least 20,000 Social Democrats were disciplined, imprisoned for a short or a very long time, and even killed”. Even if this estimate may be exaggerated because reports of such arrests of escaped SPD members or in the East German archives of the SPD are rare, the British historian Gareth Pritchard considers the fear of imprisonment to be widespread. Hundreds, if not thousands, of Social Democrats fled to the West during the unification campaign out of fear for their safety, which contributed to the weakening of the SPD's resistance to unification with the KPD.
The functionaries' conference of the SPD held on March 1, 1946 in the Berlin Admiralspalast decided to hold a ballot on the union with the KPD in the Soviet occupation zone and in Berlin. On March 14, 1946, the central committee of the SPD published a call for the unification of the SPD and KPD. In the Soviet Zone, the Central Committee refused a ballot on the grounds that the majority of the SPD members were in favor of an immediate merger with the KPD, while in Berlin it called for its boycott .
On March 31, 1946, there was to be a strike vote of the SPD members in Berlin, but in East Berlin Soviet soldiers cleared all polling stations 30 minutes after the opening, sealed the ballot boxes and cleared the queues. In the western sectors , 71.3 percent of the SPD members took part in the vote. The two questions put to the vote concerned approval of the "immediate merger", which was rejected by 82 percent, and an action alliance with the KPD, which 62 percent answered in the affirmative.
“The outcome of the questioning in West Berlin, however, did not mean that the Central Committee bowed to the clear expression of its will. The unity opponents in the western sectors wanted to break away from him and build an independent Berlin SPD. "
The SMAD and KPD tried to portray the rejection of immediate unification in the western sectors of Berlin in a propaganda campaign as a defeat by including the SPD members of the eastern sector who were prevented from voting in their calculations. Instead of the actual 82 percent of unification opponents, they came to only 29.5 percent.
On April 7, 1946, the social democratic unification opponents of the western sectors reconstituted themselves in the Zehlendorfer Zinnowwaldschule at an SPD state party conference, whereupon Karl Germer jr. , Franz Neumann and Curt Swolinzky became chairmen. The decision to unite at joint party conventions of the countries and provinces of the Soviet occupation zone was also made on this date. On 19./20. April the 15th KPD and the 40th SPD party congress in Berlin decided to found the Socialist Unity Party of Germany.
On April 21 and 22, 1946, the unification congress of the SPD and KPD for the entire Soviet occupation zone took place in the Admiralspalast in the Soviet-occupied sector of Berlin . There, on April 22nd, the union to form the SED was completed. The more than 1000 delegates were named 47 percent by the KPD and 53 percent by the SPD. 230 delegates came from the western zones . However, 103 SPD delegates from the western zones had no democratic mandate. The previous votes had resulted in widespread rejection of the union in the SPD in the western zones.
The party congress decided unanimously to unite. The new party was then headed equally by two representatives at all levels. Its chairmen were Wilhelm Pieck (KPD) and Otto Grotewohl (SPD), the deputies Walter Ulbricht and Max Fechner . The handshake of the two chairmen of the party congress formed the SED logo in stylized form. In the period following the unification congress, the individual party members of the SPD and KPD were able to declare their transfer to the SED by signing them.
While there was initially largely equality between the two halves of the party, the Social Democrats hardly played a role from 1949 onwards, the equal representation of bodies was abolished and most of the influential positions in the party and mandates were occupied by former KPD members. Especially between 1948 and 1951 there were purges and imprisonment of self-confident social democrats.
Special case Berlin
The four-power occupation law gave the four-sector city of Berlin a special status vis-à-vis the surrounding Soviet occupation zone , which the SPD used for a strike vote on the unification. Initially, even the American military governor Lucius D. Clay was opposed to the vote and hoped for an agreement in the Allied Control Council . The vote took place on March 31, 1946, it was suppressed in the Soviet sector, but resulted in an overwhelming opposition to the immediate unification of 82% of the participants in the western sectors. The merger of the KPD and SPD to form the SED only affected the Soviet sector of Berlin. It was not until the end of May 1946 that the Allies were able to agree on Greater Berlin : the Western Allies allowed the SED in the western sectors, and in return the SMAD allowed the SPD to operate again in the eastern part. But that did not mean that the SPD could be politically active in the Eastern sector unhindered. In the election of the city council of Greater Berlin in October 1946 , in which the SED and the SPD stood up, the SPD won 48.7% of the votes against the SED with 19.8% with a turnout of 92.3% of all eligible voters %, the CDU won 22.2% as a competitor and the LDP 9.3%. This was the only free election in all of Berlin, no further elections took place. The Soviet Union and the SED now split the city by not recognizing the elected Lord Mayor Ernst Reuter on the part of the Soviet city commander, the city council meeting was blown up by organized rioters (referred to by the SED as the “masses”), and the Soviet city commandant withdrew from the Allied command and the blockade of the western sectors of Berlin .
The SPD continued to exist in the Eastern Sector, but was prevented from participating in the elections by the “ National Front of Democratic Germany ”, and public relations work was suppressed. However, the members continued to participate in the work of the state party. So was z. For example, the Friedrichshain district chairman Kurt Neubauer was elected a member of the German Bundestag in 1952, one of two resident in the Soviet sphere of influence. A few days after the Wall was built in 1961, the party closed its offices in East Berlin , but without giving up its claim there.
The example of Thuringia
In contrast to Berlin, where voting results document a majority rejection of the association, the historian Steffen Kachel came to different conclusions in a local study using the example of Thuringia. In Berlin, where the SPD was already represented in the Prussian government during the Weimar period and the KPD was active in the opposition in the Landtag, the two parties rivaled sharply. In Thuringia, however, cooperation dominated; there were several attempts to form governments together, with a coalition also being formed at short notice in 1923. This willingness to cooperate continued in the anti-fascist resistance and also after 1945 and was only broken by the Stalinization of the SED in 1948. One of the masterminds of an association in Thuringia was Hermann Brill . However, he fled Thuringia shortly after the Soviet occupation.
Number of members of the parties
In the Soviet Zone (plus Greater Berlin ) the parties involved had the following membership figures:
- KPD, April 1946: 624,000 members
- SPD, March 31, 1946: 695,400 members
- SED, April 1946: 1,297,600 members
The fact that the SED had fewer members after unification than the sum total of the SPD and KPD is justified by the fact that "a large number of Social Democrats, tens of thousands, [...] did not even register with the Unity Party".
Among the SPD comrades, the rejection of the merger was strongest in Greater Berlin. There a significant part of the members did not convert to the Unity Party:
- KPD Berlin, April 1946: 75,000 members
- SPD Berlin, March 31, 1946: 50,000 members
- SED Berlin, April 1946: 99,000 members
After the unification, the number of members of the SED increased significantly.
The founding of a social democratic party by opponents of the union was prevented in the Soviet Zone by the SMAD. In the state elections in 1946 , the united workers' party clearly missed its target: Despite massive support from the occupying power, the SED did not achieve an absolute majority in any country. In Mecklenburg and Thuringia it narrowly missed this, in Saxony-Anhalt and in Brandenburg civil coalitions of the CDU and LDP would have been possible. The result in Greater Berlin was even more disappointing ( see above ). The electoral system of the later GDR guaranteed through the allocation of seats for the organizations dependent on the SED on the unit lists of the National Front that members of the SED held the majority of seats in all popular assemblies.
The SPD members who were critical of the compulsory unification had to give up their offices. In many cases they were politically persecuted or made to flee. The East Office of the SPD organized the political work of the persecuted and fled party leaders and members until the branch in Berlin was closed in 1981.
It was not until 1989 that a social democratic party was founded again in the GDR, the Social Democratic Party in the GDR (SDP). In the first free elections to the People's Chamber in 1990 under the name “SPD”, it achieved 21.9 percent of the votes. On the eve of German reunification in 1990, it was absorbed into the SPD.
The West SPD and the forced unification
The discussion about the relationship to the KPD in 1945 shaped the internal party discussion of the SPD in West Germany as well . In the second half of the year, a number of Social Democrats were open to the KPD's efforts to enter into close cooperation. In Munich, on August 8, 1945, an agreement was signed on the action group of the SPD and KPD, which was also confirmed by the military government on December 21, 1945. In Heidelberg, at the end of 1945, the KPD sought a joint working committee to organize close cooperation between the two parties during the local election campaign and to initiate the merger. The district organizations of the SPD responded, but influential Social Democrats such as Josef Amann publicly warned against a "love frenzy marriage". In order to forestall agreements between local party organizations, the SPD party congress on May 11 and 12, 1946, decided that "membership in the Socialist Unity Party and advertising for the SED [...] are incompatible with membership in the SPD".
In view of the compulsory unification of the SPD and KPD that took place in the Soviet occupation zone, in the winter of 1945/46 the SPD organizations in the other zones of occupation decided to appear distinctly independent. For example, the state executive of the Hessian SPD passed a resolution on December 30, 1945, according to which the SPD should appear in the elections with its own list. The party conference of all state boards of the SPD in the American zone on January 6, 1946, spoke out against a merger with 148 against 6 votes. The compulsory nature of unification in the Soviet Zone was clearly emphasized by the SPD in the West and the repression of the Social Democrats in the "Zone" was denounced. The deputy SPD chairman Wilhelm Knothe declared for his party on March 21, 1947: “In the entire Soviet zone, the Social Democrats were forced against their will to give up their independence. An application for a new admission of the Social Democrats in the Eastern Zone can hardly be made under the current circumstances. The SED controls the entire state and police apparatus in the eastern zone. "
Further forced unions in the Soviet sphere of influence
In Romania , under Soviet occupation, in February 1948 the Romanian Communist Party was forced to merge with the Social Democratic Party to form the Romanian Workers' Party, which was renamed the Romanian Communist Party in 1965.
In December 1948 in the People's Republic of Poland , under pressure from Stalin, the parties PPR and PPS were forced to merge to form PZPR ( PVAP for short). PPS politicians fell victim to massive political cleansing; Opponents of the new regime were forced out of party and government offices ( see also: Parties in Poland ).
The German Post AG brought in 2008 (as part of the Collector's Edition "60 Years German" ) a commemorative medal for the Unity Congress out. The front is adorned with portraits of Wilhelm Pieck and Otto Grotewohl . The accompanying text reads: New beginning and party unity. April 21, 1946 . The FAZ criticized this as historical bad taste. Among other things, the SPD Saxony complained to the Deutsche Post.
Shortly afterwards, Swiss Post removed the medal from its program.
- Minutes of the unification congress of the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) and the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) on April 21 and 22, 1946 in the State Opera "Admiralspalast" in Berlin. Verlag JHW Dietz Nachf. Berlin, 1946 (PDF).
- Günter Benser et al. (Ed.): The union of KPD and SPD to form the Socialist Unity Party of Germany. In pictures and documents. Dietz Verlag Berlin , 1976.
- Beatrix Bouvier : Switched off! Social Democrats in the Soviet zone of occupation and in the GDR 1945–1953 . Dietz, Bonn 1996, ISBN 3-8012-4075-4 .
- Bernd Faulenbach (Ed.): Social Democrats and Communists after National Socialism and War. On the historical classification of the compulsory union. Klartext-Verlag, Essen 1998, ISBN 3-88474-656-1 .
- Josef Gabert (Red.): Unity or compulsory union? The sixties conferences of the KPD and SPD in 1945 and 1946. With an introduction by Hans-Joachim Krusch and Andreas Malycha. Published by the Institute for the History of the Labor Movement. Dietz Verlag Berlin, 1990, ISBN 3-320-01595-8 .
- Harold Hurwitz: Democracy and anti-communism in Berlin after 1945. Volume 1: The political culture of the population and the new beginning of conservative politics. Verlag Wissenschaft und Politik, Cologne 1983, ISBN 3-8046-8618-4 .
- Steffen Kachel : Decision for the SED 1946 - a betrayal of social democratic ideals ?, in: Yearbook for Research on the History of the Labor Movement , Issue I / 2004.
- Steffen Kachel: A red and red special path? Social Democrats and Communists in Thuringia 1919 to 1949 (= publications of the Historical Commission for Thuringia. Small series , vol. 29). Böhlau, Cologne / Weimar / Vienna 2011, ISBN 978-3-412-20544-7 .
- Albrecht Kaden: Unity or Freedom , JHW Dietz Nachf., Bonn, 1964 (and reprint 1980, ISBN 3-8012-1121-5 ).
- Johannes Klotz (Ed.): Forced Association? On the debate about the merger of the SPD and KPD in East Germany in 1946 (= Distel-Hefte , Vol. 32). Distel-Verlag, Heilbronn 1996, ISBN 3-929348-15-2 .
- Representation on spd.de : "Forced Association - SED Regime - SED Dictatorship - SED" ( Memento from October 26, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 85 kB)
- Foundation to come to terms with the SED dictatorship : 60 years of the forced unification of the SPD and KPD to form the SED in April 1946. Bibliography from the library of the Federal Foundation for Work-Up (PDF; 91 kB)
- Dieter Rieke : Social Democrats as victims in the fight against the red dictatorship, working materials for political education. Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, Bonn 1994. Also includes Kurt Schumacher's manifesto on “Freedom in Europe and democratic self-assertion” of March 1, 1951, pp. 22-24.
- Reiner Pommerin : The forced unification of the KPD and SPD to form the SED
- Forced unification of the Communist and Social Democratic Parties in the Russian Zone. Printed as a manuscript: SPD Landesorganisation Hamburg, undated (1946)
- See Hermann Weber : The GDR 1945–1990 . Oldenbourg, Munich 2006, p. 184 f.
- Franz Moraw: The slogan of "unity" and social democracy. On the party-organizational and socio-political orientation of the SPD in the period of illegality and in the first post-war period 1933–1948. Verlag Neue Gesellschaft, Bonn 1973, p. 155.
- Christoph Kleßmann : The double founding of the state. German history 1945-1955 . 5th edition, V&R, Göttingen 1991, p. 139.
- Quotation from Siegfried Suckut: Parties in the Soviet Zone / GDR 1945–1952 . Federal Agency for Civic Education , Bonn 2000, ISBN 3-89331-384-2 .
- Günther Heydemann: The internal politics of the GDR (= Encyclopedia of German History , Vol. 66), Oldenbourg Wissenschaftsverlag, Munich 2003, p. 72.
- Heinrich August Winkler: The long way to the west , vol. 2. German history from the “Third Reich” to reunification , CH Beck, Munich, 4th edition 2002, p. 125 .
- Hermann Weber: Democrats in the Unjust State. The political system of the Soviet Zone / GDR between forced unification and the "National Front" , in: The political system of the Soviet Zone / GDR between forced unification and the National Front , 2006, p. 26.
- Ilko-Sascha Kowalczuk: The 101 most important questions. GDR. CH Beck, Munich 2009, p. 14.
- Helga Grebing: History of the German labor movement: from the revolution in 1848 to the 21st century . forward book, Berlin 2007, p. 137.
- Reiner Pommerin : Compulsory Union of SPD and KPD to form the SED, A British Analysis from April 1946 , IfZ, Jg. 36, 1988, pp. 319–338; Harold Hurwitz: Forced Union and Resistance of the Social Democrats in the Soviet Occupation Zone and Berlin , 1990; Hans-Joachim Krusch, Andreas Malycha: Unity or compulsory union. The sixties conferences of the KPD and SPD in 1945 and 1946 , 1990; Gerhard Wettig: Stalin's Germany Policy 1945–1949 , 2002; Dierk Hoffmann: Otto Grotewohl , 2009, pp. 195-257; Andreas Malycha: History of the GDR. On the way to dictatorship (1945 to 1949) , in: Information on Political Education No. 312, 2011, pp. 4–18, here pp. 9–10: “The euphoria of unity in social democracy in spring 1945 was at the end of the The year has already passed. In the meantime, most of the Social Democrats had recognized how much the KPD was dependent on Moscow directives and how much the Communists were privileged by the military administration. The founding of the SED could only be accomplished through an all-encompassing propagandistic campaign by the KPD, in which the opponents of the Unity Party were defamed as 'enemies of the working class', as well as through the use of physical and psychological violence by Soviet occupation officers against Social Democrats unwilling to unity. Erich Gniffke , who investigated the mood among the party base on behalf of the Berlin leadership, drew a depressing picture of what was going on in the party districts in a letter to Otto Grotewohl on February 10, 1946. Everywhere, he noted in his communication, the comrades would be forced out of their offices by the Soviet commanders if they opposed an immediate amalgamation of the parties. All in all, there can be no talk of democratic decision-making during the founding phase of the party. "
- Andreas Malycha / Peter Jochen Winters: The SED. History of a German party. CH Beck, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-406-59231-7 , p. 32.
- Hermann Weber: Communist Movement and Real Socialist State. Contributions to German and international communism , Ed .: Werner Müller, Bund-Verlag, Cologne 1988, p. 168
- Hans Karl Rupp : Socialism and democratic renewal. The first conceptions of the parties in the western zones after 1945 , Pahl-Rugenstein Verlag , Cologne 1974, ISBN 3-7609-0163-8 , p. 19 ff.
- Ulbricht is quoted by the New York Times as follows (translated from the American): “What matters is not only good relations between the party leaders, but also between the two organizations across the Reich, from the Oder to the Ruhr and Mecklenburg to Württemberg. We will ask the administration and the occupying powers for permission to set up youth committees to educate and inspire German youth in a new spirit, to help rid Germany of Nazi filth and to build a decent, democratic Germany. "
- Hermann Weber: Communist Movement and Real Socialist State. Contributions to German and international communism , Ed .: Werner Müller, Bund-Verlag, Cologne 1988, p. 280.
- Andreas Malycha / Peter Jochen Winters: The SED. History of a German party. CH Beck, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-406-59231-7 , p. 28.
- wording of Walter Ulbricht see Mike Schmeitzner , Sovietization or Neutrality? Options of Soviet occupation policy in Germany and Austria 1945–1955. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2006, ISBN 978-3-525-36906-7 , p. 281 f., Here p. 283.
- Andreas Malycha / Peter Jochen Winters: The SED. History of a German party. CH Beck, Munich 2009, ISBN 978-3-406-59231-7 , p. 29.
- Gerhard Wettig, The Soviet Occupation Power and the Political Action Space in the Soviet Occupation Zone (1945–1949) , pp. 39–62, on the unification of KPD and SPD, p. 47, in: The GDR and the West. Transnational Relations 1949–1989 , Ch. Links Verlag, 2001, ISBN 978-3-86153-244-6 .
- "The now freely accessible contemporary documents about the social democrats who were reprimanded and imprisoned by local Soviet commanders provide information about how psychological pressure of the occupation officers made the union possible in many places." Andreas Malycha: The eternal dispute about compulsory union , Berlin Republic 2/2006 ( online ).
- Gareth Pritchard, The Making of the GDR, 1945–53 . Manchester University Press, Manchester 2004, p. 114.
- Wilfried Loth : Stalin's unloved child. Why Moscow did not want the GDR , Rowohlt, Berlin 1994, p. 51.
- Gareth Pritchard, The Making of the GDR, 1945–53 . Manchester University Press, Manchester 2004, p. 114 f.
- “In the meeting of social democratic functionaries of March 1, 1946, which was convened at the instigation of the KPD and SPD leaders to aggressively debate the unity issue, in the course of which, however, the decision-making authority of the central committee was openly questioned and a majority Voting for a strike vote was almost a debacle for Grotewohl. "Quoted from Friederike Sattler, Alliance policy as a political-organizational problem of the central party apparatus of the KPD 1945/46 , in: Manfred Wilke (Ed.): Anatomie der Parteizentrale , Akademie Verlag, 1998, ISBN 3-05-003220-0 , pp. 119–212, here p. 198.
- Berlin SPD, Archive ( Memento from February 14, 2009 in the Internet Archive )
- Exact figures, also information on the vote in East Berlin with Klaus-Peter Schulz : Prelude to the cold war. The SPD's struggle for freedom in Berlin 1945/46 . Colloquium, Berlin 1965, pp. 235-238.
- Anjana Buckow, Between Propaganda and Realpolitik: The USA and the Soviet Occupied Part of Germany 1945–1955 , Franz Steiner Verlag, 2003, ISBN 3-515-08261-1 , p. 192.
a total of 1055 delegates took part, 548 from the SPD and 507 from the KPD. The delegates from the SBZ represented 1,298,415 party members from both parties.
Source: (Author collective :) Small Political Dictionary , new edition 1988, Dietz Verlag, Berlin 1989, ISBN 3-320-01177-4
- Martin Broszat, Gerhard Braas, Hermann Weber: SBZ-Handbuch , Munich 1993, ISBN 3-486-55262-7 , p. 481 ff.
- PDS: Half-hearted apology for forced union , Spiegel Online , April 18, 2001.
- Outpost of Freedom: A German-American Network's Campaign to bring Cold War Democracy to West Berlin, 1933-66 , Scott Krause , University of Chapel Hill, 2016, p. 47
- 1946: strike vote in the western sectors. In: Willy Brandt House. Retrieved March 11, 2008 .
- Resolution of May 31, 1946 by the Allied City Command: The Social Democratic Party of Germany and the newly founded Socialist Unity Party of Germany are permitted in all four sectors of the former Reich capital.
- Anjana Buckow, Between Propaganda and Realpolitik: The USA and the Soviet Occupied Part of Germany 1945–1955 , Franz Steiner Verlag, 2003, ISBN 3-515-08261-1 , p. 196.
- The Regional Officer in Berlin: Election results for the 1946 City Council ( Memento from May 7, 2010 in the Internet Archive )
- Gerhard Kunze: Border experiences: contacts and negotiations between the state of Berlin and the GDR 1949–1989 , Akademie Verlag, 1999, p. 16.
- Eckart Thurich: The Germans and the victors , in: Information on political education, issue 232, ed. from the Federal Agency for Civic Education, Bonn 1991.
- A red-red special path? Social Democrats and Communists in Thuringia 1919 to 1949 (= publications of the Historical Commission for Thuringia. Small series , Bd. 29), Böhlau, Cologne / Weimar / Vienna 2011, ISBN 978-3-412-20544-7 and Steffen Kachel : Decision for the SED 1946 - a betrayal of social democratic ideals? , in: Yearbook for Research on the History of the Labor Movement , Issue I / 2004.
- Manfred Overesch : Hermann Brill in Thuringia 1895-1946. A fighter against Hitler and Ulbricht (= political and social history. Vol. 29, ). Dietz, Bonn 1992.
- Martin Broszat, Gerhard Braas, Hermann Weber: SBZ-Handbuch , Munich 1993, ISBN 3-486-55262-7 .
- Martin Broszat, Gerhard Braas, Hermann Weber: SBZ-Handbuch , Munich 1993, ISBN 3-486-55262-7 , p. 487.
- Martin Broszat, Hermann Weber, SBZ manual: State administrations, parties, social organizations and their executives in the Soviet zone of occupation in Germany 1945–1949 , Oldenbourg, Munich 1993, ISBN 3-486-55262-7 , p. 418.
- Hans Kluth: The KPD in the Federal Republic. Your political activity and organization . Westdeutscher Verlag, Cologne 1959, p. 20.
- Friederike Reutter: The founding and development of the parties in Heidelberg 1945-1946. In: Jürgen C. Hess et al. (Ed.): Heidelberg 1945 . Steiner, Stuttgart 1996, pp. 214-216.
- Axel Ulrich: For peace, freedom and democratic socialism - 50 years ago: re-establishment of the SPD in Hesse-South , SPD district Hesse-South, Frankfurt a. M. 1995, pp. 27-30.
- SPD bulletin of March 21, 1947, p. 1, quoted from Gerhard Beier: SPD Hessen, Chronik 1945 bis 1988 , Bonn 1989, ISBN 3-8012-0146-5 , p. 70.
- Karl-Heinz Hajna: The state elections in 1946 in the SBZ , Frankfurt a. M. 2000, ISBN 3-631-35950-0 , p. 227 (chapter “Assessment of the 1946 election in the Soviet Zone in comparison with the votes in the Central European countries”).
- Post commemorates SED compulsory union with medal , in: FAZ.NET, November 18, 2008.
- SED commemorative medal: sample without evaluation ( memento of April 7, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Frankfurter Rundschau of November 20, 2008.
- "60 German Years": Post withdraws collector coins for the SED from circulation , in: Welt Online , November 20, 2008.
- SED commemorative coin - trinkets with a scandal story , in: Süddeutsche.de , May 17, 2010.