Topic of German expulsion still taboo
March 21, 2010
By Brent Davis, Record staff
WATERLOO — It’s a dark chapter in world history that many know nothing about, that others refuse to acknowledge.
It concerns the expulsion of millions of Germans living in Eastern Europe after the Second World War, from such places as Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Yugoslavia and eastern areas of Germany.
It’s estimated that as many as 15 million people may have been forced from their homes, a move in part condoned by the Allied leaders in the Potsdam Agreement, which authorized the return of Germans in Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary to Germany.
Those transfers were to be conducted in “an orderly and humane manner,” according to the agreement signed by British, American and Soviet leaders. It would prove to be anything but.
While casualty estimates vary, many historians — including Alfred de Zayas, whose books Nemesis at Potsdam and A Terrible Revenge were among the first English works to chronicle the tragedy — believe that two million Germans died as a result.
De Zayas, a lawyer and human rights expert who spent 25 years with the United Nations, says it deserves to be recognized alongside such failures of humanity as the Armenian genocide and ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia.
“We would be ashamed of ourselves if we realized the magnitude of the crimes,” said de Zayas, who will speak tonight at the University of Waterloo.
“The subject matter belongs in the schools,” he said in an interview. “It should be taught in genocide courses, courses that deal with crimes against humanity.”
And although the Cuban-born de Zayas — now a professor at the Geneva School of Diplomacy & International Relations — said he “broke the taboo” by writing about the expulsion, it’s a topic that still remains off-limits to many.
“They’ve got a problem with the concept of Germans as victims,” he said. “I don’t have a problem … I came to it because I thought it was an important subject.”
He says he’s been asked whether he’s anti-Semitic or a Holocaust denier, and he quickly dismisses those assertions.
“If I only deal with one category of victims, and deliberately ignore the experience of other victims, I am essentially taking away the human dignity of the other,” he said. “I’m essentially saying my corpses are prettier than your corpses.”
De Zayas will speak tonight at 7:30 p.m. at UW’s Arts Lecture Hall. Tickets are $12, and $10 for students and seniors.
A Terrible Revenge: The Ethnic Cleansing of the East European Germans, 1944-1950 by Alfred-Maurice de Zayas 
wikipedia: "Expulsion of Germans after World War II"
- Suppressed Colossal War Crime & Tragedy - Soviets murder 3.5 million German POWs & half a million ethnic German civilians in Gulags circa WW2
- "After the Reich: The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation" by Giles MacDonogh
- Unspeakable Atrocities - New German film on the greatest mass rape in history - 2 million German women raped by the Judeo-Bolsheviks from 1945-49
- "Crimes and Mercies" by James Bacque: the genocide of 9 to 14 million ethnic Germans under Allied occupation from 1944-1950
- The post-war genocide of at least three million Germans by the Western Allies - Eisenhower's Death Camps
- Dresden - A True Holocaust And Act Of Heinous Terrorism
- Historian acknowledges Britain fire-bombed German cities in WWII for purpose of mass civilian deaths and terror, killing at least 600,000