Neutral Germany? - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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'Cold war' communist versus capitalist ideological struggle (1946 - 1990) and everything else in the post World War II era (1946 onwards).
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By Atlantis
#14519207
In what has become known as the Stalin note, the Soviets offered to reunite East and West Germany in 1952 on condition that the united country would become neutral and demilitarized. The offer was rejected by the then chancellor Adenauer, but we can suppose that the Western allies would have tried to prevent it anyways.

What would have been the consequences of a neutral Germany in 1952?

Would it have weakened the West?

Would it have strengthened the Soviets?

Would it have prevented the collapse of the SU?

Would a neutral buffer between the blocks have reduced tension?

Would it have prevented Nato East expansion?

Would there have been a European Union and what would it look like?

Would communism still be a viable economic system today?

What about the social-market economy?
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By Lexington
#14519208
Atlantis wrote:we can suppose that the Western allies would have tried to prevent it anyways.


I'm not sure if that's true: the Soviets and the West managed to do this in Austria (Austrian State Treaty).

If, however, Germany had been reintegrated and neutralized like Austria...I don't see any reason it would have affected the Cold War much.

The European Union, on the other hand, probably wouldn't exist since the Germans would have been committed to neutrality. Austria itself didn't join the EU until the 1990s because of that commitment.
By Atlantis
#14519210
Lexington wrote:The European Union, on the other hand, probably wouldn't exist since the Germans would have been committed to neutrality. Austria itself didn't join the EU until the 1990s because of that commitment.

To start with, there would have been a corridor of neutral countries (Yugoslavia, Austria, Germany, Sweden, Finland) which would have had a common interest in neutrality and could have formed an economic zone in between the political blocks. Even other countries might have had more leeway and associate with the neutral countries and thus prevent the crystallization into the blocks. The iron curtain hadn't been drawn completely closed by that time.
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By Lexington
#14519231
There was a thing called the non-aligned movement, which was headed by one of the countries you mention (Yugoslavia), but it did not achieve much during the Cold War. I still don't see any reason that adding Germany to it would have done much. It might have cooled tensions somewhat, but the Cold War was fought in the developing world mostly: Cuba, Vietnam, Africa, Afghanistan..
By Atlantis
#14519237
Lexington wrote:It might have cooled tensions somewhat, but the Cold War was fought in the developing world mostly: Cuba, Vietnam, Africa, Afghanistan..

What happened in the third world were proxy wars that would have been sideshows to any war in Europe. The center of tension was the East/West divide in Europe. It didn't turn into a hot war because the consequences would have been too devastating for both sides.

You remember the Morgenthau plan, which was to turn Germany into an agrarian nation? It was abandoned because the US wanted Germany's industrial strength to rebuild Europe. I think to keep Germany in the Western camp was of great importance to the US.
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By Lexington
#14519265
Atlantis wrote:What happened in the third world were proxy wars that would have been sideshows to any war in Europe. The center of tension was the East/West divide in Europe. It didn't turn into a hot war because the consequences would have been too devastating for both sides.


The war in Europe never happened and if Germany were neutralized it would have been even less likely to happen in Europe.

I still see no reason that the rest of the Cold War: Cuba, Vietnam, Africa, and so on would not have happened because of a neutral Germany. These things had nothing to do with Germany or Europe.

Atlantis wrote:You remember the Morgenthau plan, which was to turn Germany into an agrarian nation? It was abandoned because the US wanted Germany's industrial strength to rebuild Europe. I think to keep Germany in the Western camp was of great importance to the US.


And the Morgenthau Plan did not happen, because you're right: the US, France, and Britain agreed a stronger Germany was a good idea.

But still, adding Germany's economy to the non-aligned movement probably would not be large. It was a pretty big thing and yet didn't matter in the whole cosmos of the Cold War.
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By fuser
#14519314
It wouldn't had much effect on Cold War I think

Atlantis wrote:The offer was rejected by the then chancellor Adenauer, but we can suppose that the Western allies would have tried to prevent it anyways.


They did prevented it.

Lexington wrote:There was a thing called the non-aligned movement, which was headed by one of the countries you mention (Yugoslavia), but it did not achieve much during the Cold War.


I don't think its quite true, many nations managed to maintain their neutrality during the period when both superpowers were on their asses to join their side. Without NAM, there would had been numerous conflicting Baghdad pact, SEATO etc.
By Atlantis
#14519662
Lexington wrote:adding Germany's economy to the non-aligned movement probably would not be large. It was a pretty big thing and yet didn't matter in the whole cosmos of the Cold War.

But wasn't the non-aligned movement primarily a third-world affair? A neutral corridor from Yugoslavia to Finland across the center of Europe would have been a different affair altogether. I think it could have changed the direction of history. If Germany had been able to trade both with the East and the West, the SU might have been able to modernize with Germany's help and not fall back behind the West.

Atlantis wrote:They did prevented it.

I guess so, Adenauer wasn't much more than a US puppet like most conservative chancellors in Germany.
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