Thursday, March 15, 2007

Ethnic Cleansing in Central Europe 1945-1946

During 1945 and 1946 some 14 million Germans from Central Europe and the Balkans permanently lost their traditional homelands due to a ruthless campaign of ethnic cleansing. Estimates of the number of ethnic German refugees and expellees to perish as a result of this forced migration range up to two million people, most of them women and children. At the International Conference on International Borders and Migration I hosted on Saturday, Rudolf Pueschel spoke about the forced expulsion of the Sudeten Germans from what is now the Czech Republic. After the defeat of Germany in the spring of 1945, the new authorities in Czechoslovakia forcibly expelled over three million ethnic Germans from Bohemia. More than 200,000 of them died in the process of this ethnic erasure. Soviet and Polish forces expelled millions more Germans from lands that are now part of Poland into the current borders of Germany. My friend Abed left a link in a recent comment on my blog to this article dealing with this colossal crime.

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