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Berlin, Richard E., 1894- / Diary of a flight to occupied Germany, July 20 to August 27, 1945.

Human contacts in Munich,   pp. 96-97 PDF (439.2 KB)

Page 96

The Peace Statue-one of the beautiful monuments of Munich-
had a curious story: At the beginning of the American bombing,
a wing from the Bird of Peace was shot off. The people of Munich
rightly regarded this as a bad omen.
Visited the gauleiter's house (undamaged) where Mussolini
stayed in Munich.
An ammunition dump we passed on the outskirts of the city had
accidentally exploded only a few days before, and 30 soldiers were
The interpreter who accompanied the escorting American officer
told us that he is half Jewish and, because of this, has suffered ex-
treme privations during the war living underground. During a
daylight bombing raid he happened to be in the fields. The pilot of
an American fighter plane apparently spied him and came down,
apparently to machine-gun him. Knowing that he could not find
shelter, he stood up and waved a white handkerchief. The pilot did
not shoot. Instead he circled and dropped a small thing out of
the plane. It was a pack of cigarettes.
In the late afternoon, walking about the city in the rain, we
saw sad-faced people combing the rubble of bombed buildings,
hunting for the bodies of loved ones or for personal effects. The
population of 830,000 had been reduced to about 600,000.
Human Contacts in Munich
Thursday, August 16
Awakened at 6 a.m. after a long night's sleep and, looking from
my hotel window, I saw two Nazi soldiers with their packs on
their backs coming from the railroad station, having just returned
home. They paused here and there in amazement and dejection,
examining the piles of rubble.
Our flight to Naples, scheduled for today, was cancelled because

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