A Strange Enemy People
You are going into Germany. You are about to meet a strange people in a strange enemy country. So said the handbook given to British personnel embarking on tours of occupation in Germany after the end of the Second World War. Control of Germany was divided among the British, the Americans, the Russians and the French. Yet Britain had no model for its administration other than colonial ones. The British arrived in a devastated land where the natives were off limits and were allowed no involvement in the running of their own affairs. Widespread corruption flourished in a climate of 'anything goes' - where millions of German citizens were homeless or without food, fuel or other necessities - and an overblown bureaucracy bedevilled the British administration.
However, tensions eventually eased and, as the threat from the Soviet Union grew, friendship with the Germans was officially encouraged. The Federal Republic of Germany was well on its way to recovery by 1950.
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