University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

Military government weekly information bulletin
Number 74 (January 1947)

Press and radio comments,   pp. 24-43 PDF (10.3 MB)

Page 32

tional framework for coordinating and
supervising youth work.
On the whole the program for German
youth is developing in a satisfactory manner,
and there are many hopeful signs that good
leadership is emerging and the goals for
German youth are being achieved.
Looking ahead, it is anticipated that the
economic situation will show substantial im-
provement, and that the development of
democratic government and of German Youth
Activities will progress even more favorably
during the coming year. These factors should
lead towards a peaceful, self-supporting, and
democratic Germany, provided you, the Ger-
man people, have a'n honest desire to reach
this goal. The support -you give your own
elected government, your, productive efforts
in agriculture and industry, as well as your
general attitude towards democratic proce-
dure during the coming year, will be care-
fully noted as a measure of your desire.
Believing that the great mass of German
peopf sincerely wish to attain this end, I
express the hope that your next and suc-
ceeding Christmas holidays will prove hap-
pier than those upon which you are now
Finally, I have approved an extension of
the terms of the Youth Amnesty to approxi-
mately 800,000 individuals who are not
chargeable under the Law for Liberation
from National Socialism and Militarism as
major offenders or offenders, and whose
financial status conclusively shows that they
have not profited from Nazi greed and am-
bition. This Amnesty will also include those
persons not chargeable as major offenders
or offenders who suffer from more than fifty
percent disability. I am sure that this Am-
nesty will permit German administration to
proceed more vigorously to seek out and
punish the -active Nazis who brought de-
struction on their country and at the same
time will encourage those who come under
its terms to seek the ways of democracy.
Details will be announced today by my Office
of Military Government.
*    *    *
Another recent statement by the Military
Governor reviewed the US Army's youth
activities program. It is printed below in
its entirety.
German youth have responded to their
new freedom to join groups of their
own choosing to an extent far greater than
was expected by Military Government youth
officials. In recent weeks there has been
an accelerated upswing in the number of
groups authorized and the volume of par-
This growth can be seen best by consider-
ing the fact that membership in youth groups
jumped in the last three months from 477,734
as of 1 August 1946, to 718,192 as of 1 No-
vember 1946, a gain of 241,000, or approx-
imately 50 percent. Organized groups also in-
creased from 2,901 to 6,621. In November
an additional 1,200 groups have been
This spurt forward has come about as the
result of several factors, primary of which
has been the 5 October directive which made
possible the greatly increased Army assis-
tance program.  This program  is already
undergirding and strengthening existing Ger-
man organizations and encouraging new
programs to spring into life. Nearly 1,000
military personnel are actively engaged in
assistance to German youth activities.
As a matter of fact, US troops have play-
ed a very important role in the revival of
Germany's youth activities from the very
end of the war. At that time the Hitler
Jugend, which was the only youth group
permitted under the Nazis, was disbanded
and youth life was completely disorganized.
As early as September 1945 local troop
detachments began to assist youth groups
to come to life on a democratic basis. These
troops have organized sports events, youth
days, and youth clubs; directed discussion

Go up to Top of Page