WW2 Question - Was there ever a suggestion to destroy Germany as a unitary state?

There was certainly some French encouragement to try to set up a separate state based on the Rheinland, much as the French government post-WW1 had tried to do (as well as France trying to take over the Saarland), but there wasn’t even the same sort of local support as there had been in the early 20s, and neither Britain nor the US thought it was even a starter. It didn’t take very long after 1945 for the Western allies to realise that they simply couldn’t maintain control and responsibility for the economy and society of Germany on their own, in any political/state guise, nor (in principle) would it have been justifiable to deny the Germans the same degree of national self-determination as any other country.

Unlike the Nazis, the Soviets and Lithuanians didn’t have plans to exterminate the Poles as an inferior race. 1.6-2 million Poles were ethnically cleansed from Poland and expelled from their homes by Germany during the war; Hitler’s plan was:

See Also Generalplan Ost:

As more than amply demonstrated by what the Nazis started doing to Poland and what they intended to finish doing had they won the war, utter horseshit. The Soviets incorporated Lithuania and Georgia as SSRs, Soviet Socialist Republics; they hardly “did everything possible to obliterate” them. Nazi Germany directly annexed part of conquered Poland into Germany, put the rest under German governorship, and started depopulating Poland of Poles.

Germany was an odd conglomeration of states-it was only unified in the German Empire. you had separate kingdoms (like Bavaria), "free Cities), and other states. Breaking it up would have been possible, but had the Allies done this, it would have caused all kinds of problems-the UK did a lot of trade with the North German states, and recovery from the war would have been problematic.

I’ve heard that there was a serious plan after WWI to break up Germany into the pre-1871 principalities. Is this true and was there a similar plan put forward after WWII?

I remember reading the introduction to the pre-war translation of *Mein Kampf * out of curiosity(about as far as I could get in that book). IIRC, the author describes the lead-up to the Beer Hall Putsch as a reaction to French agitators supporting a group trying to get the Ruhr to declare itself independent and the Nazi’s were one of the groups pushing to counter this movement. Of course, this was before WWII and the French were machinating inside Germany (or so the Germans thought) to try and break up the country to make Germany weaker and less of a threat.

The Ruhr valley was under French (and Belgian) military occupation, the French killed 137 German civilians (probably much more than that) who resisted.

Occupation of the Ruhr - Wikipedia

The Soviets did their share of ‘depopulating’ as well, via such actions as the Katyn Massacre. Although these were on a much smaller scale and were primarily politically based, not racially, they happened while the USSR was still on Hitler’s side. And even after the war Stalin arrested, deported, and/or executed any members of the Polish govt-in-exile that foolishly believed him and traveled back to Poland thinking there would be free elections.

Which has what to do with anything being discussed? You’re talking about state sponsored murder of potential political opposition, which has absolutely nothing to do with depopulation. Calling it ‘on a smaller scale’ is like comparing a splinter to a decapitation. Contrary to what jtur88 would have us believe, things would not be the same in Poland if the Nazis had won as they were when the Soviets won. The Nazis intended to eliminate the Poles as a race and as a culture via mass murder. During the six years they occupied it, they managed to kill 6 million Poles, 20% of the population. The elimination of Polish culture was well under way:

The Nazis (note the absence of an apostrophe) were going to murder every last Polish person. That’s what it would have taken to eliminate the German nation as well. Are you asking whether the Allies had seriously considered doing that?

Dissonance, I don’t think your point is valid. The quote you give from Wiki shows how the Nazis planned to destroy Polish culture. It lends no support that they wanted to eliminate all Poles. They may very well have eventually intended that but it is not supported by your cite.

Ascenray- where do you get your information that the Nazis were going to murder every last Pole?

I think a closer perspective would be to say they intended the surviving Polish people to be as slaves to the supposed “Germanic” race.

I have not read of where the Germans or Nazis intended to slaughter the citizens of an entire country. Certainly those with specific supposed racial characteristics.

What parts of

Are unclear?:dubious:

Here’s a map of FDR’s proposal.

The leaking of these harsh plans were one factor in the fight-to-the-death attitude of some Germans, as if the Russians weren’t enough.

The total destruction of Poland as a state, language, culture was part of Generalplan Ost, the ultimate Nazi plan for what to do in Eastern Europe after Endsieg, final victory. About 80-85% of Poles were to be either killed or deported to Siberia. The Nazis planned one of the means of depopulation during the war through the Hunger Plan, essentially pillage all food from the east to German proper, feed Germans and kill the undesirables, as these guidelines from the Economic Staff East state;
*Many tens of millions of people in this country will become superfluous and will die or must emigrate to Siberia. Attempts to rescue the population there from death through starvation by obtaining surpluses from the black earth zone […] prevent the possibility of Germany holding out till the end of the war.[7]
Martin Bormann spoke of the General Government as a ‘great Polish labor camp’, though the lifespan of Nazi slaves was not a long one and many died through deliberate starvation, disease and other mistreatment, part of Nazi Germany’s muddled policy on whether ‘untermenschen’ from the East were to be enslaved or eliminated, in the end they did both and tried to mix the two and work people to death, with predictable results in regards to the work.

As stated not every Pole was marked for death, however, Polish children who were seen as having desirable racial characteristics were kidnapped and brought back to the Reich to be ‘Germanised’, much in the same way that Polish territory itself was planned to be by German settlers once the native population had been expelled.