It’s a national holiday here in Slovakia. Victory day. The official end to the Second World War, at least in Europe, marking the defeat of Nazi-Germany and its allies. Hitler had been dead for over a week and active German resistance finally stopped. They had given it their best shot. During the final storm on Berlin some 300,000 Soviet soldiers fell…
If you’re in Moscow today you will see a glorious Victory Parade. Which will also be a form of propaganda to scare the masses of Nato troops now secretely amassing near Russia’s borders. Of course, in the western mainstream media the boogie-man is always Russia and not the US and its NATO vehicle.
Russia is the country that can rightfully claim to have defeated the Nazi monster. 9 out of ten German soldiers were killed fighting the Soviet army. If the US did D-Day it only did so to prevent Paris from falling in Soviet hands. The Red Army could have hacked it alone. The unnecessary bombing of Dresden was only a way to show the Soviets what the American/English airforce was capable of. More like a warning shot to the Soviets than a vital move in subdueing the nazis. Even Hitler knew that as of December 1941, after the failure of Operation Typhoon, the German offensive to capture Moscow, the war on the Eastern front was pretty much unwinnable. At best the western allies simply sped up the process, aided by Hitler, the worst strategist to have ever been in command of such a vast theater of war.
So, let’s say 90 percent of the victory credit is due to Russia and the ex-Soviet states that had troops in the slaughterhouse on the Eastern Front.
Often overlooked though is that an estimated 2,000,000 million German women were raped when the Soviet horde spilled across German borders. Some were raped as many as 60 to 70 times. Not just German women were the victims of this mass rape, also Soviet prisoners of German concentration camp, even in their emaciated, skin over bone state, were sexually brutalized by their liberators.
For quite a few of these German women it was their first sexual ‘encounter’. You can imagine that for them the potential of enjoying their sexuality was ruined for the rest of their lives.
There’s an excellent movie about this period. It’s called ‘Eine Frau in Berlin’, a woman in Berlin.
It’s based on the memoirs of a German lady. Nobody knows who she was, her real name is lost to history. The book gives a detailed, emotionally tense account of what happened after the German army became too impotent to defend German women from the rage of Soviet soldiers. German men were stripped off their masculine pride as they stood by, helplessly, witnessing their wives, sisters, daughters, mothers and even grandmothers ripped apart by enemy soldiers, who seem to have had very indescriminate tastes when selecting their victims… One gets the feeling that the whole thing was not about sex, but about revenge and humiliation. You can read the book Vagina, by Naomi Wolf, where she writes:
“Rape and sexual assault … should be understood not just as a form of forced sex, they should also be understood as as a form of injury to the brain and body, and even as a variant of castration.”
Of course, you could say that they ‘deserved’ it, that they had it coming. The Wehrmacht and SS had created hell on earth in the Soviet-Union for almost 4 years. To name just one example they had deliberately cut off Leningrad to starve its civilian population to death. During the siege of Leningrad, which lasted 872 days, about a million Soviet civilians died.
It’s hard to imagine though that a 16-year old German girl in any way deserved to have her thighs and internal organs ground to mush after the passing of 10 to 20 or more drunk, victorious Ivans.
So, the 8th of May, a very joyful event for millions of people across the globe, and something that still deserves a national holiday, but also a day that marked a descent into hell for the vanquished, some guilty of the same or worse, many totally innocent.
The movie A Woman in Berlin is on YouTube right now, with English subtitles.