Zone and Sector

Access to Berlin

After the ceremony at Wendenschloss, Prime Minister Churchill on 9 June made one more attempt to have the American and British withdrawal from the assigned Soviet zone put off until the Russians came to terms on the other questions pertaining to Germany and Austria. President Truman replied that because of the existing agreement on the zones, he could not "delay the withdrawal of American troops from the Soviet zone in order to use pressure in the settlement of other problems." 1 By cable on the 14th, Truman told Stalin he was ready to issue instructions to the U.S. troops to begin withdrawing into their own zone on 21 June "in accordance with arrangements between the respective commanders, including in these arrangements simultaneous movement of the national garrisons into Greater Berlin and provision of free access by air, road, and rail from Frankfurt and Bremen to Berlin for US forces." 2 To the President's surprise Stalin asked for a postponement. Marshal Zhukov and the other Soviet commanders, he said, would be in Moscow for a victory parade on the 24th and for a meeting of the Supreme Soviet and would not be able to return to Germany until the end of the month. He suggested, instead, starting the movements on 1 July and added that by then the work of clearing mines in Berlin would also be completed. Truman agreed, with the proviso that enough US troops be in Berlin before 1 July to carry out preparations for the forthcoming Big Three conference scheduled to begin in Berlin in mid-July. 3

In early June, Maj. Gen. Floyd L. Parks became Commanding General, Headquarters, Berlin District (US Sector). 4 On the 15th, SHAEF began trying to arrange for Parks to take a reconnaissance party to Berlin to survey the site and start work on the accommodations for the US delegation to the Big Three conference. Six days later, after a combined effort by the Military Mission and the Embassy in Moscow and, finally, after a strong hint that otherwise the conference might have to be delayed, the Russians grudgingly agreed to let Parks and his party go to Berlin.5

Parks and an advance party of a dozen


officers landed at Tempelhof airfield in Berlin on the afternoon of the 22d; the Russians took them through the city to Babelsberg in the southwestern suburbs. The main element, designated the Preliminary Reconnaissance Party for Berlin, was to come by road the next day. Col. H. G. Sheen, who was in the Parks- group, recorded what he saw

The bomb damage in the heart of the city is difficult to describe. In certain areas the stench of unburied dead is almost overpowering. From Tempelhof to the Wilhelmsstrasse not one undamaged building is standing; roofs, floors, and windows are gone, and in many cases the fragments of only one or two walls are standing. Many of the streets remain passable, but rubble covers the sidewalks and large numbers of streets are still blocked off because of bomb craters and debris.6

At Babelberg-the mostly undamaged former German film colony where the Russians had chosen to billet the delegations to the Big Three meeting-Parks met his Soviet host, Col. Gen. Sergey N. Kruglov, Stalin's security chief. Kruglov showed him the houses reserved for the President and the US conferees and the Cecilienhof Palace in Potsdam where the meetings would be held; in the evening he sent a case of wine and some champagne. He refused to talk about the entry of US troops into Berlin, however, saying his authority extended only to arrangements for the conference, which were confined to the Babelsberg-Potsdam area. Having been warned by the Military Mission before he left Frankfurt that he might have some trouble if he tried to open the Berlin question, Parks did not press the point.7

On the return flight the next afternoon, Parks followed the Berlin-Halle Autobahn looking for the truck convoy of the Preliminary Reconnaissance Party for Berlin. It was supposed to have crossed the Elbe early in the morning and should have reached Babelsberg before he left. When he spotted the head of the column, it was three miles east of the Elbe and still fifty-five miles away from Berlin. Colonel Howley, commanding the convoy, had reached the Elbe bridge at Dessau in the morning on time. With him he had 100 trucks, the 136 enlisted men and 85 officers of his Detachment A1A1, and several dozen officers and 175 enlisted men detailed to work at the conference site. At the bridge, the Russians had refused to pass more than 50 trucks, 37 officers (actually a total of 50 but minus the officers with Parks), and 175 enlisted men-the exact number specified in the instructions from Moscow. Howley, after arguing with successive Soviet generals for seven hours, had finally crossed the river with the numbers the Russians stipulated. He had left A1A1 behind, which made him and three other officers the only military government personnel in the part of the convoy allowed to continue.

The Americans had learned something about the Russians at the Dessau bridge; they learned more on the road that day. Howley described the scene

The trip from the Elbe River to Babelsberg was an experience out of this world. Russian displaced persons who had gaily marched across the bridge at the Elbe were seen wearily struggling on foot toward the railhead at Berlin. Horsedrawn convoys dotted the road. Each vehicle was drawn by 3 or 4 horses with a number of spares tied to the side. Often young foals tottled along in back




of the mares. The Russian boatlike wagons were piled high. They were driven by one mustached Russian with another sleeping on top of the wagon. These were supply trains reminiscent of our Civl War. Thousands of horses were in the fields guarded by Russian soldiers. The troops were dirty and disinterested in our progress. They looked as earthy as our own combat troops at the end of three weeks in the mud. The country was deserted. Fields were unattended, and no Germans were in sight.8

The reconnaissance, such as it was, ended at Babelsberg. The Russians refused to allow the party members to enter Berlin, and guards prevented them from leaving the US compound at Babelsberg. No one would even have set eyes on the city had Howley not secured permission on the 26th for himself and his deputy, Lt. Col. John J. Maginnis, to make a two-hour trip to Tempelhof airfield to confer with a US air crew due to arrive there. When the Soviet NKVD (secret police) officer, who went along to make certain the Americans did not stray from their stated mission, showed that he did not know the shortest way to the airfield, Howley and Maginnis had the small satisfaction of laying out a


route that took them across five of the six boroughs in the US sector.9  On the 28th, the military government officers went back to Halle, as Howley remarked later, "convinced that we would never be sent to Berlin for any military government work." 10

The frustrations would indeed never end, but the wait to get into Berlin was not going to be as long as Howley feared. On 27 June, General Deane cabled to General Marshall from the Military Mission Moscow, "Soviet General Staff has just informed me . . . that instructions have been given to appropriate commanders regarding free access to Berlin and Vienna." 11 At the same time, he informed Eisenhower that Zhukov was back in Berlin "with full power to settle all questions on the spot." 12

General Clay and Lt. Gen. Sir Ronald Weeks, Montgomery's deputy military governor, went to Berlin on the 29th to confer with Marshal Zhukov. Zhukov, whom Clay afterwards described as cordial but unpredictable, demonstrated both qualities at the outset.13 He accepted the agenda Clay and Weeks had brought with them as the basis for discussion and turned at once to the first point, which concerned arrangements for the US and British forces to enter and take over their sectors in Berlin. After some desultory discussion about how many troops the Western Allies would bring in, however, he asked how long the Americans would take to evacuate the parts of the Soviet zone they held. When Clay said the plan was to begin on 1 July and to complete the turnover in nine days, Zhukov wanted to know why it would take so long. The Soviet forces, he said, could take over the entire area in twenty-four hours, and, he added, the quicker the move out of the zone, the quicker the Western Allies could enter Berlin. Coldly, he let it be seen that what was important for him was a trade: the approximately 16,400 square miles of the Soviet zone that SHAEF held in exchange for the 185 square miles of the western sectors in Berlin. Obviously not expecting SHAEF to agree to so lopsided an exchange if it could be avoided, he furthermore specified that reconnaissance parties might enter Berlin on 1 July but that the main body of the occupation troops would have to wait until the day the movement out of the Soviet zone was completed. When Clay asked why, if the US forces released a third of the territory they held to the Soviet forces on the first day, one-third of the Berlin force could not move in on that day, Zhukov simply replied that such an arrangement was impossible. The most he would allow, after Clay had agreed to the complete US evacuation of the Soviet zone by midnight on 4 July, was that the US and British forces could begin moving across the Soviet zone toward Berlin on the 3d.

The remaining items on the agenda primarily concerned road, rail, and air access to Berlin. SHAEF asked for two highways, three rail lines, and open access by air in an arc bounded by lines drawn from Hamburg and Frankfurt to Berlin. Zhukov, saying that one road and one railroad ought to be enough for the 50,000 troops the British and Americans had said they would


have in Berlin, offered the Autobahn Berlin-Magdeburg-Hanover, the railroad paralleling it, and one twenty-mile-wide air corridor from Berlin to Magdeburg and west. The air corridor, he agreed after some argument, would be divided in two over Magdeburg, one lane bearing southwest toward Frankfurt, the other west toward Hanover. Clay reserved the right to reopen the access question in the Control Council, and Zhukov coolly replied that possibly all points discussed at the meeting might be changed. When Clay asked for unlimited use of the roads, Zhukov said he did not understand just what the British and Americans desired. It would be necessary, he stated, for vehicles to be governed by Russian road signs, military police, and document checks, but there would be no cargo inspection; the Russians were not interested in what was being hauled, how much was being hauled, or how many trucks were moving.14 Eventually, Clay would come to think he had been "mistaken in not . . . making free access to Berlin a condition to our withdrawal into our occupation zone." 15 At the moment, however under instructions from McCloy in Washington not to press controversial matters to the point of dissension, he was most concerned with getting the Control Council established and working. To McCloy he reported after the meeting, "I still feel that with patience and understanding we will be able to work out central controls over a long period of time." 16

Howley, after his Babelsberg trip, had requisitioned a farm outside Halle, and he planned to move Detachment A1A1 into camp there on Sunday, 1 July. On Saturday, he received orders to proceed to Berlin instead. In the morning, in battle dress and with full field packs, the detachment headed east across the Elbe. The convoy moved through the Russian control points without a hitch, and by nightfall, A1A1 was bivouacked in the Grunewald, the parklike wooded area on the southwestern outskirts of Berlin.

On Monday morning, Parks, Howley, and Maj. Gen. Lewis O. Lyne, the British Berlin district commander, met Col. Gen. Aleksandr V. Gorbatov, the Soviet city commandant, at his headquarters. In spite of some stiffness-most of the morning was spent just trying to reach Gorbatov by telephone-the meeting resulted in two important decisions: that the U.S. sector would comprise six boroughs (herzvaltungsbezirke) in the southwestern part of the city, Zehlendorf, Steglitz, Tempelhof, Schoeneberg, Kreuzberg, and Neukoelln; and that the Americans would assume control in their sector at midnight on 4 July. Gorbatov agreed to allow US military government officers to reconnoiter the boroughs they would control and, after the tour, invited the British and Americans to a tea, which turned out to be a full-course dinner. 17 The Russians accepted Parks' invitation to a formal ceremony of occupation to be held by the US forces in Berlin on the afternoon of the 4th.

The 2d Armored Division, which together with First Airborne Army paratroops formed the main Berlin occupation force, began to move out on the morning


ALLIES MEET IN BERLIN. Soviet troops greet Signal Corps photographer who was one o f the first Americans into the city on 4 July 1945.

ALLIES MEET IN BERLIN. Soviet troops greet Signal Corps photographer who was one o f the first Americans into the city on 4 July 1945.

of Tuesday, the 3d, expecting to close to Berlin by midnight on the 4th. The armored division passed through Halle, which would come under Soviet control on the 4th. Zhukov had said the division could use the Halle-Dessau-Berlin Autobahn, but only until the 7th. After this date, the road would be closed because of the conference. The Russians stopped the lead convoy for a half day at Dessau, however, claiming that a bridge ahead was unsafe. To be out of Halle on time, the division then had to make a hasty detour sixty-five miles north to Helmstedt to get on the Magdeburg-Berlin Autobahn, only to find itself caught there in a traffic jam with British units to whom the Russians had given a similar excuse when they forced them off a road farther north.18 The railroad proved to be totally unusable; the bridge at Magdeburg was out. The line had been double-tracked, but the Russians had torn up and taken


away one track and all the signal equipment; the first military train did not get through until the end of July.

On the afternoon of the 4th, Parks held the occupation ceremony in the Adolf Hitler Caserne in Berlin with as much of the 2d Armored Division as had arrived. After the parade, which some Russians had attended, he received a message from Zhukov stating that the Americans would not be allowed to take over their sector at midnight as agreed but would have to wait until the Kommandatura was set up. The Americans, by then tired and thoroughly irritated, suspected the Russians were stalling for time to finish stripping the western sectors, and Parks, after failing to reach Zhukov, told Howley to take over the sector anyway, adding, "But don't get into too much trouble." 19

Howley's borough teams moved in early the next morning. By nine o'clock, they had raised the American flag in each borough, posted the proclamation and ordinances, set up summary military government courts, and notified the Buergermeisters to obey orders. The Russians were late sleepers, and , it was eleven before they came around to protest. The language difference hampered discussion somewhat, but both sides had essentially only one point to make: the Russians, that Marshal Zhukov said "No"; and the Americans, that General Gorbatov said "Yes." The Russians said that they had their orders, and the Americans said that they had theirs. In the end the Americans stayed and the Russians stayed. In a day or two, when the Russians learned they would not be punished for having failed to expel the Americans, some of them became quite friendly. Interviews generally were conducted with much headshaking over the conflicting orders and ended with elaborately cordial handshakes.20

The Americans at last had a chance to see what they were getting. What they saw were mostly the effects of the 75,000 tons of bombs the US and British air forces had dropped on the city during the war. In all Berlin only 300,000 dwelling units out of what had been a million and a half remained undamaged. To haul away the rubble, they estimated, would take sixteen years at a rate of ten fifty-car trainloads a day. Of the once great Berlin bus fleet, thirty-seven vehicles were still running. Steam engines were being used to haul the streetcars to save electricity, and less than a tenth of the subway cars were operable. The bridges over the city's many canals had nearly all collapsed under the bombing and artillery fire or had been blown up by the retreating German troops. Sewers hanging under the bridges had fractured and were pouring their sewage into the canals, which were stagnant and covered with scum, breeding places for billions of flies and mosquitos. Graves marked by crude wooden crosses could be seen everywhere, even in the public squares and along the streets; and thousands of corpses lay unburied under the rubble. The people were getting 64 percent of a 1,240-calorie daily ration. The Russians had put Germans, mostly women, to work on the mountains of rubble, using some debris to fill in the craters in the streets and arranging the rest in less obtrusive patterns.

The Germans seemed relieved to see the Americans arrive. Although the Soviet command had not imposed nonfraterniza-




tion in the stringent form the Americans and British were still trying to enforce on themselves, the Russians' official arbitrariness and individual unpredictability had aroused insecurity and fear that persisted even though they also often displayed personal generosity and kindness, and even though looting and plundering had subsided and rape had become an unnecessarily strenuous way of attaining what hundreds of women in the almost starving city were willing to provide for small considerations.21

Clay, Murphy, Parks, Howley, and a battery of interpreters went, together with their British counterparts, to talk to Zhukov in the Soviet headquarters in Berlin-Pankow on the 7th. The spirit of the meeting was not at all friendly. Zhukov said he was willing to set up the Kommandatura, but there were matters of food and fuel supplies to be settled before the Soviet authorities turned over the western sectors. The Americans and British were going to occupy their sectors and in doing so, he said blandly, they would also have to assume responsibility for feeding the people.


According to his figures there were nearly 800,000 Germans in the American sector and 900,000 in the British sector, and they would require 40,000 tons of food per month. Berlin's normal supply system, he maintained, had broken down completely and was not likely to be restored soon. He also insisted on the Western Allies' supplying nearly all the city's coal, because, he claimed, Upper Silesia, formerly the chief source of coal for Berlin, had been transferred to Polish control and was no longer part of Germany. Since the British and Americans had expected to get food for their zones from the primarily agricultural eastern zone, and not to have to ship it there, and since neither the United States nor the United Kingdom had recognized the Soviet transfer of Upper Silesia to Poland, the western representatives, badly shaken, broke off the meeting to consult their governments.

Clay, nevertheless, came away somewhat encouraged by Zhukov's apparent willingness to set up the Kommandatura. He thought this attitude might establish a pattern for the Control Council, and to preserve it he and his party and Weeks and his party returned three days later prepared to assume responsibility for the food and coal pending subsequent decisions to be made either at the Potsdam Conference or by the Control Council when it came into being. Zhukov agreed to keep Berlin supplied until the Western Allies could begin to get shipments in with a commitment to repay him, of course; the conference then moved on to the organization of the Kommandatura. Clay tried again to get the original US view accepted that the city should be administered as a unit. Both the British and the Russians objected, and in the end the system that was proposed for the Control Council was also adopted for the Kommandatura. This body would be responsible for central administration, but each nation would have full control in its own sector; furthermore, it was to be quadripartite, Zhukov having agreed to let the French commander-designate, Brig. Gen. Geoffrey de Beauchesne, sit as an observer until a French sector was assigned. On questions of municipal administration the western representatives were once more at a disadvantage; while the Russians had detailed knowledge of conditions in the city, they had practically none. Consequently, they felt forced to let the Soviet organization and legislation remain in effect even though they knew that the rule of unanimity in the Kommandatura would make changes difficult later.22

On the 11th, the members of the Kommandatura, Parks, Lyne, Gorbatov, and de Beauchesne, met to decide how they would operate. To the first question on the agenda, when the Kommandatura would begin to function, Parks answered, "This is the first meeting." The others approved, and they elected Gorbatov chairman for the rest of July. At nine o'clock the next morning, the Soviet military government detachments withdrew from the western sectors.23


Rolling the Carpet

Military government called the operation "rolling the carpet." The tactical commands used the term "redisposition" to avoid "redeployment," which was reserved for the troop movements from Europe to the war in the Pacific. For both, the withdrawal to the final US occupation zone was a massive job. On V-E Day, the US forces held 43 percent (78,000 square miles) of the area within the 1937 German boundaries, which was the whole (with minor exceptions) of the assigned US zone (41,400 square miles) plus an area almost as large in the British and Soviet zones.24  The carpet would have to be rolled and the tactical units redisposed from the west, east, north, and south, and within the zone the boundaries of Third and Seventh Armies would have to be readjusted, before the armies could become the military district commands. The obscure behavior of the Russians and belated decision on the boundaries of the French zone added complications.

The movement out of the British zone was completed by stages in June. Fifteenth Army relinquished the northern half of the Rheinprovinz, and Ninth Army evacuated southern Hanover, Braunschweig, Westphalia, and the part of the Soviet zone contiguous to the British zone. 25 Simultaneously, Third and Seventh Armies redisposed their troops within the US zone to give Third Army complete control of Bavaria. The day after this move was accomplished (15 June), Headquarters, Ninth Army, closed down, and Seventh Army assumed command of its troops and territory, by then mainly the US part of the Soviet zone but including also the Bremen enclave and, temporarily, the Headquarters, Berlin District.26

When Clay and Zhukov talked in Berlin on 29 June about the withdrawal from the Soviet zone, Zhukov said he wanted it done fast and without ceremony. He did not desire formal reliefs, he said. In fact, he wanted a two- or three-mile gap between his advance guards and the US rear guards.27 The Commanding General, Seventh Army, Lt. Gen. Wade H. Haislip, arranged the details with Col. Gen. Vassily I. Chuikov in a meeting at Wiesbaden on the 30th. Accordingly, the Russians sent reconnaissance parties to selected points on 1 July. For the next three days, both forces moved to an agreed phase line each day; the last line, reached at midnight on 4 July, was the Soviet zonal border. The Russians refused to take over any prisoners of war, and SHAEF had to rush at the last minute to evacuate 40,000 hospitalized prisoners. Chuikov also said his orders were not to accept any displaced persons other than Soviet citizens; SHAEF's instructions, however, were to leave all DPs who wanted to stay. The question, which had been left hanging, turned out to be immaterial in any case, since practically no DPs other than Soviet citizens-and not even all of them wanted to stay. Before the exchange began, SHAEF had emptied the Merkers and Nordhausen mines and the Mittelzverk


and had resettled 600 German scientists and their families in the final US zone. 28

The last to be evacuated was the French zone, and the movements out of the other two zones were nearly completed before the final decision on its boundaries was made. In February 1945, anticipating the action of the Yalta Conference, the French Provisional Government had asked for a zone composed of the German territory on the left bank of the Rhine from Cologne south and, on the right bank, Baden, Hesse-Darmstadt, Hesse-Nassau, and Hesse-Kassel. 29 Such a division, while no doubt very satisfactory to France, would have been highly inconvenient to the United States, since it would have interposed a broad band of French-occupied territory between the British and American zones, thereby reopening the question of access routes to Bremen, and it would have cut the US zone off entirely from the Rhine River. After Yalta, the de Gaulle government attempted to press its desires as a matter of right, and as time passed, SHAEF found reasons why it also could not relinquish other areas. Frankfurt could not be let go because it was the only suitable site for the Supreme Headquarters. Eisenhower for a while thought he could give up Baden and Wuerttemberg, but then he found that he needed Mannheim, in Baden, as a Rhine port and the Karlsruhe- Stuttgart-Ulm Autobahn and railroad. What he then had left to offer the French were the southern halves of Baden and Wuerttemberg and a bridgehead east of Koblenz. These areas, together with what the British offered on the left side of the Rhine, made a waspwaisted zone about two-fifths the size of either the British or the US zone. The French were not pleased and argued for control of at least the whole state of Baden or, failing that, at least Karlsruhe, the administrative center of Baden. It was the first week of July before the French accepted the zone as offered, with a provision for a review of the boundaries later. The signing of the amended zones protocol was then delayed until 26 July by uncertainty over the French sector in Berlin, which eventually comprised two boroughs of the assigned British sector, Reinickendorf and Wedding, the Soviet Union having refused at Potsdam to relinquish any of its territory. 30

The exchange with the French was the only one in which the US forces acquired new territory. Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, and some of the surrounding Kreise had been under French administration since April. Detachment H1E2 recorded its experience on moving into Karlsruhe as follows

The policy of the French seemed to be to remove everything that could be moved. When their vehicles were not enough they asked for US help, and the detachment was directed by the Regierungsbezirk detachment to supply its one truck. During the week following entry into Karlsruhe every officer spent most of his time trying to stop the "equipment repatriation" that extended even to our own personal billets. On one occasion we had to alert the security troops who, at the point of a machine gun, blocked the attempted removal of the city's fire engines.31

In Karlsruhe the population grew by 21,000 people in the week after H1E2 ar-


rived. Detachment H3G3 under Maj. Joseph I. Taylor had been in Landkreis Esslingen for ten days at the end of April and had turned the area over intact to the French. When H3G3 returned on 8 July, the Kreis was "stripped . . . of work horses, automotive equipment, machinery, and food and medical supplies" but not of Nazis; the French had removed only the Buergermeister of Esslingen. 32 On Sunday morning, 8 July, Detachment E 1 A2 sent a cleaning detail to work on the buildings it was going to occupy in Karlsruhe. When the French departed later in the morning, they took the detail's truck, paint, pails, brushes, and ladders with them.33 West of the Rhine the exchange was carried out more ceremoniously. Maj. Gen. H. J. Gaffey, commanding XXIII Corps, received General de Joslard de Monsabert with a fifteen-gun salute and a guard of honor and formalized the transfer of the southern Rhineland with the hoisting of the French flag.34

When the last exchanges with the French were completed in 10 July, Seventh Army was wholly within the territory it would administer as the Western Military District (the U.S.-held portions of Hesse, Baden, and Wuerttemberg plus the Bremen enclave). Third Army held all of Bavaria, the Eastern Military District, but it also still had two corps in Czechoslovakia. Although the Czech government had stated a desire to have both the US and Soviet forces leave its territory, it had privately asked the Americans to stay as long as the Russians did. Eisenhower had told Marshall that he could begin the withdrawal from Czechoslovakia any time but added, "If Czech independence is to be maintained it seems undesirable that Russia should be left in sole occupation." 35

Settling in the Zone

After 10 July, US forces did not occupy any territory in Germany that was not part of the US zone; military government entered what was termed the intermediate status, that is, between the mobile phase, which ended with the redisposition to the zone, and the final static phase, which, owing to changes in the Static Plan, had yet to be achieved. Although the zone would be reduced by the territory to be ceded to French control, EGAD had concluded before V-E Day that because of the unanticipated increase in the population of the US zone, the 250 pinpoint detachments contemplated in the 1944 Static Plan would not be enough. In staff studies in March and April, EGAD projected a second "final" static phase "to effect a more complete and thorough coverage of the US zone." 36  In late June, Clay ap-






proved an EGAD proposal to use the officers and men of the approximately two hundred provisional detachments, all of which by then had at least six weeks' experience in military government, to increase the number of detachments in the zone to 419 and provide at least one detachment in each Landkreis and one in every town with a population over 5,000. 37  (Chart 2 )

Consequently, the intermediate status at first seemed likely to culminate in almost a doubling of the number of detachments to be stationed in the zone; by 15 July, 346 detachments were deployed. In the meantime, however, ECAD surveys and conferences with the army G-5's had developed requirements for fewer but stronger detachments. During the rest of the month and the first two weeks of August, EGAD disbanded the provisional detachments and some I detachments, using their personnel to augment the larger detachments. When the static phase began on 15 August, the number of detachments was down to 269, one for each of the 4 Laender, 12 Regierungsbezirke, 44 Stadtkreise, and 209 Landkreise in the zone. The number of detachment officers, however, had increased from 2,600 in mid-July to 2,887 on 15 August. 38

The conversion from the intermediate status to the static phase rang down the curtain on ECAD -- no doubt, in the opinion of many of its members, none too soon. In June, three USFET officers, Col. Henry Parkman, Jr., Col. Harry P. Cain, and Lt. Col. Mitchel Wolfson, made a general inspection of the military government detachments in the US zone. They concluded that "the usefulness of ECAD is at an end so far as detachments in the field are concerned." The most common complaint of the detachment personnel, both officers and enlisted, was stagnation in grade. In the I detachments, for instance, almost everyone was at least one step below his table of organization grade or rating and had been for two years or more. The fundamental trouble, as the USFET inspectors discovered and the detachment members had known for months, was that ECAD was too remote physically and too often excluded from actual military government to exercise competent authority over the detachments. After reading the inspector's reports, Brig. Gen. Clarence L. Adcock, Assistant Chief of Staff G-5, USFET, on 10 July ordered ECAD "washed out," effective 1 September. On 15 August, control of the civil affairs regiments passed to the military district commands, the 2d ECAR going to the Western Military District and the 3d ECAR to the Eastern Military District. The detachments were reassigned and renumbered, the designation being by type and number only. The Land detachment for Wuerttemberg-Baden, for instance, E1C3, became E-1 ; the Land detachment for Bavaria, E 1 F3, became E-201.39

The G-5 inspection cast doubt as well on the whole concept of organization and training for military government adopted in World War II. The inspectors rated the


morale and spirit of the detachments as "surprisingly good . . . considering the exasperatingly long wait and repeated training in various pools and schools before finally getting down to the real job for which they came overseas." However, noting that company grade officers recruited from the tactical troops and given short periods of training had performed well, they recommended recruiting more "with the view not only of filling shortages but to the gradual replacement of older military government officers who have grown tired or stale or otherwise proved unsatisfactory in performance." 40 Military government officers in the field sometimes put the problem less equivocally, as in the following

Many officers and enlisted men have worked for the detachment. Those coming from tactical units have often done more efficient and honest work than those trained for months in ECAD schools. The series of pools in which military government officers were forced to stagnate for over a year was as vicious a system as can be conceived. There is hardly a man who has passed through it who has not given concrete evidence of demoralization in the most exact sense of the word. The long, sterile inactivity and the theoretical, half fish half fowl military training killed all enthusiasm in officers and men, and many became subject to a complete moral breakdown.41

The trouble was most serious in the lower level detachments, which suggests that the weakness was not inherent in Colonel Hunt's vision of a trained military government force but rather in the World War II interpretation of it, which insisted on equal preparation at all levels and resulted in overtraining, overorganization, and underemployment.

Settling military government into the Eastern Military District posed no problems. The district and the Bavarian Land boundaries coincided, and all of Bavaria was in the US zone. When the Land detachment established itself in Munich and E and F detachments took over the major political subdivisions, the framework for regional control was complete.

The Western Military District was a different case altogether. Its external boundaries were in doubt until after the final decision on the French zone, and internally it was a clutch of administrative anomalies. From north to South (excluding Bremen) the district was made up of the Prussian provinces of Kurhessen and Hesse-Nassau, Land Hesse, northern Baden, and northern Wuerttemberg. Across its middle, dividing it in two, stretched a curious creation, the SHAEF enclave. When the idea of the enclave was born in April 1945, the rationale apparently had been that SHAEF as the combined command ought to have a degree of separate territorial status, and the original proposal had been to set aside the seventy-five square miles of the Frankfurt Stadtkreis.42 By the time SHEAF Main moved to Frankfurt on 15 June, the enclave had grown to embrace the Stadtkreise Frankfurt, Hanau, and Offenbach and five Landkreise in Hesse-Nassau and Land Hesse. No military or civilian agencies could billet there without SHAEF approval, and the administration of military government in the enclave, delegated to


12th Army Group and the armies in the rest of the U.S.-occupied territory, was transferred to Brig. Gen. Robert Q. Brown, Headquarters Commandant, SHAEF.43

Clay's first thought was to make a single Land of the Western Military District, but it would still have been split in two by the enclave; furthermore, Ambassador Murphy objected because the creation of a single unit conflicted with the Allied policy of decentralization. The next best solution was to set up three Laender: Hesse-Nassau (Kurhessen and Hesse-Nassau, less the territory transferred to French control), Hesse (the old Land Hesse), and Wuettemberg-Baden (the northern halves of these two Laender). This arrangement left the Western Military District with six separate administrative centers: Bremen, Marburg (for Hesse-Nassau), Darmstadt (for Hesse), Stuttgart (for Wuerttemberg-Baden), Frankfurt (for the SHAEF enclave), and Heidelberg (the military district headquarters).44

In the new Wuerttemberg-Baden the populations of the two former Laender had at least one thing in common; they both regarded the division of their states between the US and French zones as the greatest misfortune that had befallen them as a result of the war.45 The two states of Hesse, however, had offended the American sense of administrative efficiency. Economically they and the SHAEF enclave formed a single unit, and there was no good reason for their separate existences-as, indeed, there had not been since 1866 when the Czar of Russia, Alexander II, who was married to a Hessian princess, had intervened to prevent Prussia from uniting them. What the German governments thereafter had been unable to do, military government accomplished rather quickly and easily. The big obstacle was the SHAEF enclave, which at first seemed destined to be taken over by USFET and become permanent. In the second week of July, however, after SHAEF had been disbanded, G-3, USFET, recommended to the Chief of Staff that the enclave be abolished because "Control by the Headquarters Commandant . . . is beyond his ability." Smith agreed, and in the conversion to the static phase, military government control in the former enclave passed to the Western Military District. In September, arguing that the merger would promote local patriotism and thus serve the decentralization policy, G-5, USFET, secured an order to combine Hesse-Nassau, of which the former SHAEF enclave had been made a part, and Land Hesse in a new Land Greater Hesse.46

The establishment of the military district, Land, and regional boundaries in July and August completed the framework for territorial military government, and in August, Seventh and Third Armies relieved their corps and divisions of command functions with respect to military government. The chain of command then passed directly from the army commanders (as military district commanders) to the Land, regional, and Kreis detachments. Third


Army went a step further and combined the Land detachment for Bavaria with the Army G-5. At the district and theater levels a G-5 technical channel to the detachments was authorized. The instructions specified, however, that at theater and district levels the military command channel would "always be controlling" and that the advent of territorial military government in no way removed from a corps, division, or subordinate commander "the responsibility for taking direct action in military government matters when the security of forces under his command is prejudiced." 47

The conversion from tactical to territorial military government control was more easily accomplished on paper than in the Landkreise and Stadtkreise. A year later, Maj. Gen. Oliver P. Echols, talking about the problem, which was still very much alive, told the Senate Special Committee Investigating the National Defense Program, "Military government had a hard time taking over. When fighting troops take an area they consider that they own it." 48  After four months of the occupation, Seventh Army G-5 complained, "Most tactical units, troops and commanders alike, do not know what military government is or what it is supposed to do." Even the new units coming in as replacements, while slow in comprehending the functions of military government, were quick to assume the prerogatives their predecessors had held during the war.49 As Hilldring had predicted, a military government detachment commander -at most a colonel and more often a captain or major- whatever his authority on paper, was no match for a major general commanding a division when the two occupied the same bailiwick. Always, the division commander determined when the security of his forces required an intervention in military government. Colonel Parkman's report on the inspection of military government cited the difficulty of getting the tactical commands to limit their interpretation of the word "security." 50

The tug of war between the tactical commands and military government unfortunately could not be conducted entirely out of the sight of the Germans. Sometimes the result was only harmless embarrassment, as when Detachment E1C3 had to relinquish the Villa Reitzenstein, which had traditionally been the governor's residence in Stuttgart, to Headquarters, 100th Infantry Division.51 At other times, the conflicts among the Americans threatened to undermine the authority of the occupation. The German civilian officials were often caught between military government, which had appointed them but did not have the power to protect them, and the tactical troops, who either ignored them or treated them as if the war was still going on and they were all Nazis. In Amberg, in northern Bavaria, after being repeatedly called on the carpet by the 4th Armored Division, the civilians asked the military government de-


tachment not to issue any more orders without clearing them first with the tactical commands.52
At Ingolstadt, part of the staff of the 9th Infantry Division became involved in a plot with German civilians to overthrow the city government.53

The Spoils

One of the earliest lessons of World War II was the potential crucial importance of technology. From the beginning the governments-fortunately the Allies more than the Germans-expected scientific and technical proficiency to influence heavily and perhaps even decide the outcome of the war. A new scientific device or a new industrial process, they believed, could be worth divisions or even armies; and battles, perhaps even the war, could be won or lost in the laboratory or factory. In occupied enemy territory, scientific and technical intelligence might reveal the state of the enemy's advancement in particularly dangerous areas such as atomic fission and might uncover processes or devices that could be converted to Allied use.

During the planning for the invasion SHAEF set up the T (Target) Sub-Division in G-2 to plan for intelligence exploitation of scientific and industrial targets. It was at first composed of five US and three British officers and thirteen enlisted men and women. In February 1945, on the eve of the advance into Germany, SHAEF created the Special Sections Subdivision to co-ordinate the operations of the T Subdivision and several other G-2 sections and subdivisions with related missions. T Subdivision, meanwhile, had acquired a field element, the 6800 T Force, which would reach a 1,700-man strength in April and, with the later addition of the GOLDCUP ministerial control parties, went well over 2,000. During May and June, the force put another 1,000 investigators into the field.

Among its high priority targets the T Force listed synthetic rubber and oil catalysts, new designs in armored equipment, V (rocket) weapons, jet and rocket propelled aircraft, naval equipment, field radios, secret writing chemicals, aero medicine research, gliders, and "scientific and industrial personalities." During the drive into Germany and the first weeks after the surrender, T Force examined some 3,000 planned targets and uncovered 2,000 others. The grand prize target, of course, was the Mittelwerk, the V-2 plant at Nordhausen; but to the scientific and technical specialists, documents, patent records, optical devices, high pressure pumps, gear grinders, tire cord twisters, and supersonic wind tunnels were often almost as sensational. When large numbers of German scientists and economic and industrial experts began to be discovered in late April, Special Sections Subdivision set up the Enemy Personnel Exploitation Section to manage and interrogate them. For its most important charges, the Enemy Personnel Exploitation Section established a detention center, DUSTBIN, first in Paris and later in Kransberg Castle outside Frankfurt. DUSTBIN was the scientific and industrial-economic counterpart of ASHCAN, and some of its inmates, such as Albert Speer and Hjalmar Schacht, were candidates for both centers.

The top technicians and leaders of the German rocket development program, 450


of whom had been evacuated to southern Bavaria late in the war and had there surrendered to US troops, formed a special group. In July, the Secretary of War approved Project OVERCAST, the shipment of 350 German specialists -mostly in rocketry but also including some in other fields of military significance- to the United States. What use might be made of these specialists, aside from their possibly being able to contribute something to the war against Japan, was uncertain, and one of the most compelling arguments for bringing them to the United States seemed at the time to be simply to put them beyond the reach of Soviet recruiters. The Russians had captured Peenemuende, the German rocket research station, and acquired the Mittelwerk in the redisposition of forces but had missed out on the research and development personnel. Had the leaders of the rocket group, Professor Wernher von Braun and Gen. Walter Dornberger, not decided for themselves that in the long run the United States was the best place to carry on their work and had they not held their colleagues together, OVERCAST might have come to nothing. The War Department insisted all OVERCAST personnel be volunteers, sign contracts for one year, and agree to leave their families behind in Germany, in order to forestall complaints from US soldiers who could not bring their families to Europe. Under these conditions, few volunteered. Those who had families refused to leave them to face the hardships of the first postwar winter alone; and it was not until the late fall, after USFET agreed to provide housing and a 2,300-calorie ration for the dependents, that OVERCAST began to progress.54

Although the GOLDCUP teams did not uncover any intact parts of the German government, at least none considered worth salvaging, they had by the end of May collected 750 tons of documents and nearly a thousand German ministerial personnel. To house and exploit the documents and personnel, Special Sections Subdivision in June opened the Ministerial Collecting Center in a former munitions plant at Hessisch-Lichtenau outside Kassel. In the summer, the center's holdings increased to 1,420 tons of documents, 46 tons of microfilm, and 1,300 Germans.'' 55

Early in 1945, foreseeing a vastly increased military and civilian interest after hostilities ended in Germany, Secretary of War Stimson had sent his scientific consultant, Dr. E. L. Bowles, to Europe to help set up a single high-level scientific and technological intelligence organization. Later, in April, among his other assignments, General Clay had acquired the job of


working with Dr. Bowles in carrying out the mission from the Secretary of War. Since the new organization would have to be combined for as long as SHAEF existed, Clay had selected as its chief Brig. R. J. Maunsell (British), who was already chief of the Special Sections Subdivision, and as the deputy chief Col. Ralph M. Osborne (US). Clay also gave the organization a name, Field Information Agency, to which Maunsell added the word "Technical" to make a pronounceable acronym, FIAT.

FIAT was from the first conceived as a posthostilities agency. It would inherit from the Special Sections Subdivision a military mission and, in the search for information to use against Japan, also a wartime mission; but in the long run it would be oriented at least equally toward civilian interests. Chief among its interests would be "the securing of the major, and perhaps only, material reward of victory, namely, the advancement of science and the improvement of production and standards of living in the United Nations by proper exploitation of German methods in these fields." 56 FIAT's scope was therewith extended to take in scientific and industrial processes and patents having civilian as well as military applications.

Although Clay, Bowles, and Maunsell envisioned FIAT as having exclusive "control and actual handling of operations concerning enemy personnel, documents, and equipment of scientific and industrial interest," they discovered before long that to set up an agency with such sweeping authority in the bureaucratic thickets of SHAEF was not possible. Direct control of operations was already in the hands of various long-established SHAEF elements and would remain there-except for DUSTBIN, which came under FIAT along with its parent agency, the Special Sections Subdivision, on 1 July, and the 6800 T Force, which by the time it passed to FIAT (on 1 August) had practically finished assessing its assigned and uncovered targets. The one new T Force operation in the FIAT period was conducted in Berlin in July and August. 57 In its charter, issued at the end of May, FIAT was authorized to "coordinate, integrate, and direct the activities of the various missions and agencies" interested in scientific and technical intelligence but prohibited from collecting and exploiting such information on its own responsibility.58

Never the high-powered intelligence unit Stimson had wanted and, after SHAEF was dissolved, an orphan shared administratively by the US Group Control Council and USFET without being adopted by either, FIAT eventually came by its distinctive role in the occupation almost inadvertently. In the summer of 1945, from its office in Frankfurt and branches in Paris, London, and Berlin, it provided accreditation, support, and services to civilian investigators from the Technical Industrial Intelligence Committee (Foreign Economic Administration) then arriving in Europe in large numbers to comb German plants and laboratories for information on everything from plastics to shipbuilding and building materials to chemicals. As military units that had been engaged in gathering


technical intelligence were redeployed beginning in the late summer, FIAT frequently also became the custodian of the documents and equipment they had collected.

Meanwhile, in June, President Truman had established the Publications Board under the Director of War Mobilization and Reconversion and instructed it to review all scientific and technical information developed with government funds during the war with a view toward declassifying and publishing it. In August, after V-J Day, the President also ordered "prompt, public and general dissemination" of scientific and industrial information obtained from the enemy and assigned this responsibility as well to the Publication Board.59 At first informally and later, in December, by War Department order, FIAT acquired the responsibility for the Publication Board program in Germany and a mission, which was the same one in fact that had been foreseen for it in June, namely, to exploit Germany's scientific and industrial secrets for the benefit of the world. As the military intelligence projects were completed and phased out in late 1945 and early 1946, the volume of civilian investigations increased; FIAT microfilming teams ranged across Germany, and the Frankfurt office screened, edited, and translated reports before shipping them to the United States. By the end of the first year of the occupation, FIAT had processed over 23,000 reports, shipped 108 items of equipment (whole plants sometimes were counted as single items), and collected 53 tons of documents.60


SHAEF's wartime mission ended on V-E Day. The last residual mission, the redisposition into the zones, was completed on 10 July, and the Supreme Command terminated on the 14th. Headquarters, USFET, under Eisenhower as Theater Commander and Smith as Chief of Staff, had opened in Frankfurt on 1 July; and when its increments from ETOUSA, SHAEF, and 12th Army Group were fully assembled, it was, with 3,885 officers and 10,968 enlisted men, an imposing organization in its own right. USFET commanded only US troops, but its sphere of responsibility extended outside the zone in Germany into England, France, Belgium, Norway, and Austria. Two military government staffs, the US Group Control Council and the theater G-5, would provide the US element of the quadripartite administration for Germany and govern the zone. The 12th Army Group ceased its operations on 25 July, and thereafter USFET also assumed direct command of the occupation forces.

SHAEF had used its authority to bring into being a number of combined agencies which, while they did not constitute a central administration for the western zones, were a more substantial step in this direction than would be made again for several years. The agencies included the Allied Printing and Paper Control Board, the Rhine Navigation Agency, the Resources Allocation Board, the Production Control Agency, the Economic Control Agency, the


Combined Evidence Collecting Center for War Crimes, the DPX, FIAT, and CROWCASS. The functions of the agencies concerned with economic matters went to the Control Council and to the zonal administrations. The Combined Evidence Collecting Center, CROWCASS, and some other organizations that could not be divided or assigned either to the British or US commands passed temporarily to a Combined Administrative Liquidating Agency. FIAT separated into its British and US components, but the British FIAT stayed in Frankfurt. The two components occupied the same building, at 69 Burgerstrasse, Frankfurt, and later the Director's Building in the I. G. Farben plant at Hoechst, and continued to work closely together.61

The Displaced Persons Executive (DPX ) was a special case. In the month of July, UNRRA had 2,656 persons in 332 DP teams deployed throughout the western zones. It planned to more than double its personnel, set up a central headquarters for Germany near Frankfurt, and then take over entirely the care and supervision of the displaced persons from the military authorities. For the interim, which was expected to be about three months, the DPX continued as the Combined Displaced Persons Executive (CDPX), operating under the existing SHAEF directives but without authority to make new policy.62

Along with SHAEF, the Combined Chiefs of Staff and Combined Civil Affairs Committee also virtually passed out of the picture as far as Germany was concerned. The USFET channel of command from Washington was IPCOG, the SWNCC, and the JCS. Soon, this changed also. On 16 July at Potsdam, the President assigned "the necessary direction of our activities and negotiations pertaining to the treatment of Germany and Austria" to the War Department and the State Department -State to deal with policy, and War to deal with "the executive and administrative aspects." IPCOG, in which the Treasury Department and Foreign Economic Administration were represented, subsequently ceased to exist.63

As a kind of housewarming for the zone, USFET planned and, in forty-eight hours beginning at daybreak on 21 July, executed a check and search operation code-named TALLYHO. The objectives were to check the credentials of all persons in the zone, civilian or military; to search all premises and individuals for prohibited articles, such as firearms and stolen US government property; and to search for evidence of black-marketeering. Staged in secret, to the extent that an operation employing 163,000 troops in the Western Military District alone could be kept a secret, TALLYHO apparently did at least take most Germans by surprise. It raised a fast-traveling wave of rumors: that there had been a jailbreak, that an American officer had been shot, that the Americans were making a last minute search for loot before turning the zone over to the Russians. After




the surprise wore off, which took no more than four hours, the Germans became quite co-operative; and some of them began to arrange their property in neat displays, as if for "showdown inspection." The search brought in 2,747 illegal small arms, 2,658 miscellaneous items of Army clothing and equipment, 340 AWOL soldiers, and evidence for 23 fraternization cases. The confiscated black-market goods amounted to 100 gallons of gasoline, 1,000 pounds each of sugar and flour, 75 pounds of coffee, 138 automobile tires, and 300 pairs of shoes, which in total, USFET G-2 concluded with not quite flawless logic, constituted "no evidence of an organized black market." Of the 83,000 Germans arrested, 77,000 were held for nothing more than improper identification papers. In the end, however, USFET believed TALLYHO was a success in that it impressed German population "with the serious intention of the American troops." 64




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