Lichtfilm left

Submit to FacebookSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn


A documentary by Wolfgang Bergmann and Helga Hirsch (Running time: 45 minutes)


This film sheds light for the first time on a chapter of German-Polish post-war history that has been largely forgotten and long held under taboo. Germans who were collectively forced out of the former East zones for the crimes of the Nazi regime were not the only ones punished. Members of the German minority in Poland who were Polish citizens before 1939 had to pay penance in 1945, simply for their German roots. Without proof of individual guilt, German families were expropriated, committed to forced labor and interred in the same work and concentration camps the Nazis had used, and which had only been cleared out by the SS a few days earlier. Just as the Poles had suffered under the Germans until January 1945, the Germans were now oppressed and abused by the Poles. The few sources that are now coming to light are showing that until the dissolving of the camps in 1950, more than 100,000 Germans, mostly in Upper Silesia, West Prussia and close to Lodz, were imprisoned. Most of them were women and children, as the men had retreated with the military to the west, or were already in prisoner-of-war camps. At least 20,000 of these prisoners died as a result of abuse, epidemics and hunger. The film accompanies former camp inmates back to Poland, in Upper Silesian Swietochlowiece, to Sikawa near Lodz and Potulice near Bromberg. Using individual, but typical, events that took place in the first days and weeks at the end of the war, witnesses of the time describe the situation of the defenseless inmates in the camps and at their places of work.

Credits & Sonstige Downloads

Download Credits

Download Dokument 1

Download Dokument 2