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 27

1946-1947 CIVIL ADMINISTRATION (Continued from page 5)
cratic parliamentary governments - govern-
ments deriving their powers from constitu-
tions approved by the electorate and exer-
cising those powers under the control of the
elected representatives of the people.
The example of the US Zone was not
without its influence in the other zones which
are now engaged in a similar process of fram-
ing state constitutions. In this connection,
it may also be mentioned that the Allied Con-
trol Council approved a temporary constitu-
tion for Berlin which had been drafted under
the direction of the Allied Kommandatura.
Elections to the central city council and to
the twenty borough (Verwaltungsbezirk)
councils under this constitution were held on
20 October.
The adoption of the constitutions of Ba-
varia, Hesse, and Wuerttemberg-Baden
brought a great change in the relations of
Military Government' to the German civil
governments of the US Zone. These changes
were described in the basic directive of
30 September and in the letters by which
Military Government approved the state con-
stitutions. Hereafter the role of Military Gov-
ernment will be primarily that of obser-
vation, inspection, reporting, and advising.
On the other hand, Military Government spe-
cifically reserved certain powers to itself,
particularly with reference to basic US poli-
cies, international agreements, quadripartite
legislation, and similar policy matters.
INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS PROTECTED
Before leaving the subject of state consti-
tutions, it should be pointed out that these
documents set forth in great detail the rights
of the individual and provide for judicial
protection of these rights against legislative
and administrative action. In view of the
flagrant disregard of all human rights by the
Nazis, this was particularly necessary. Prior
to 1933, the administrative courts had been
an important means of safeguarding the in-
dividual against the arbitrary acts of offi-
cials. Administrative courts were provided
for in the state constitutions and are now
being established in each of the three states.
The constitutions also contain various civil
service provisions and, in accordance with
the directives of Military Government, civil
service codes were promulgated in November
in Bavaria, Greater Hesse, and Wuerttem-
berg-Baden. These codes purge the previous
laws of their Nazi features and provide for
a democratic service in which appointment
and promotion is based upon merit as deter-
mined by competitive examination, and in
which the caste features of the old bureau-
cracy are abolished.
REPORT ON CENTRAL AGENCIES
The creation of democratic constitutional
state governments was not an end in itself
but was a milestone on the road towards the
formation of a democratic constitutional Ger-
many as a whole. In his speech at Stuttgart
on 6 September, Secretary Byrnes called for
a federal form of government for Germany
and suggested the steps by which that could
be accomplished. The Civil Administration
Division, OMGUS, working through the
Interdivisional Committee on Governmental
Structure in which various other divisions
actively participated, had previously prepa-
red a report on central German agencies and
another on central German government in
which federalism and other basic terms were
defined. These reports were then used by
the Interdivisional Committee in developing
the'\riteria for the review of the state con-
stitutions.
The continued inability of the four powers
to reach agreement on the establishment of
the central German administrative depart-
ments called for by the Potsdam Declaration
greatly stimulated the growth of the Laender-
rat (council of ministers-president established
in October 1945) as a means whereby the
three states of the US Zone could cooperate
in the performance of common tasks. Start-
ing out with only a handful of committees,
the number of Laenderrat committees and
subcommittees is now approximately 70. As
27


Go up to Top of Page