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Military government weekly information bulletin
No. 36 (April 1946)

German reactions,   pp. 14-22 PDF (4.9 MB)

Page 22

'posed the establishment -of af separate
Bavaria more frequently than -the less
well educated.
Despite fear of another strong central
government, the public grasps the eco-
nomic advantages of -a central govern-
menat, according to this survey. A majority
of the sample population agreed that coyn-
ditions would be better if economic po-
licies were formulated by a central gov-
ernmem* rather than by the Laender.
"At present, economic policy is being
directed by the government of the various
Laender. Would it be better or worse
if these policies were formulated by a
oentral government?" They answered:
All right as things are now
No opinion
No answer
1 /0
It is significant that evien the majority
of Bavarians accepted this argument. The
basic motive behind Bavaria's desire for
a s;trong local government and separatism
is -to be found, therefore, in other di-
Considerable pro-ceatralist sentiment
was also registered on another question
covering .the desirability of, forming a.
centrai government for the four zones.
Those who expressed an opinion on this
question voted about three to one in favor
of a central government.
"Do you think that a central govern-
men,t for all four zones should be
fomed?" brought the following replies:
No opinion
More Hessians (70 percent) favored a
central government for all four zones
than did. residents -of Baden-Wuerttem-
berg (58 pereent) or Bavaria (54 percent).
But here again it may be noted that
although the greatest weight of disap-
proval (25 percent) was found among
Bavarians, a majority in all three Laen-
der, including Bavaria, favored ,the idea.
The desire for a, unified centralized
government for the four zones was de-
finitely more widespread among Berliners
than among the American Zone public.
This finding is based on a mid-February
survey of public opinion by, the Surveys
Section of the Information Services
Control Section (Berlin Military District).
Questions similar to those employed in
the American Zone survey were asked
in Berlin and the results offer a rough
basis of comparison with public opinion
in the American Zone.
Roughly 80 percent -of the Berliners as
against 60 percent of the people of the
American Zone thought that a single
central government should be formed for
all Germany. An even greater difference
in attitude between the two groups was
displayed on the question of a centralized
versus a federal form of government.
Eighty percent of the Berliners but only
about 20 percent of the Zone desired a
centralized government which operated
directly from Berlin.. On the other hand,
aboaut half the American Zone public
wanAted a federative or confederative form
of government as against 'only 15 percent
of the Berliners. Although a bare majority
.of :the Zone public felt -that economic policy
would be better directed by Ia central
government this belief was practically
unanimous (90 percent) among Berliners.
It is apparent, therefore, that the Ber-
liners retain a strong desire to reestablish
themselves and their-city as the hub; of
a centralized Reich government.
* - -

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