Lost Area , German 1919 - 1945 (Overlay) discussion
This is a discussion thread for the following file:
Lost Area , German 1919 - 1945 (Overlay)
German losses after both world wars and numbers killed/expelled. Numbers are high estimates
Misleading to incorrect
The overlay map marks the European areas “lost” by “Germany” throughout the 20th century. It leaves out overseas territories that the German empire held since the late 19th century until 1918/21. It doesn't mark the Rhine-Ruhr and Saar areas which were occupied by or belonged to France for several years after the war(s). FRG/GDR should have been coloured differently for they coexisted almost 41½ years (May ’49 – October ’90)−there’s one small area (“Amt Neuhaus”) at the Elbe river that belonged to the GDR, but is now part of the district of Lüneburg of the state of Lower Saxony, which is the only such instance except for Berlin.
Tyrol still belongs to Austria, but South Tyrol is now Italian. Note that the Austrian-Hungarian empire ceased not before 1918, too, and Hungary also lost much of its territory. Several areas had been annexed during the wars or in their prefaces, e.g. Austria and the Sudetenland ’37/’38, but the overlay makes it seem as if they either never (in the 20th century) belonged to one of the Germanies or always did.
In conclusio, the literal "Lost" should be replaced by the year since that area (last) became German territory. (Posen or the Alsace for example changed owners more than once. Danzig/Gdańsk even was kind of a country of its own for several years.)
Although it may be true that 3M−IIRC the number cited in general is more like 2M−German civilians died in ’44 and ’45 in the Eastern territories, most of those were not “murdered” in the legal sense of the word. (Likewise not all of the oft-cited 6M European Jews were “murdered”, but here the percentage is much higher and thus the term is perhaps justified.) This is still a very emotional matter and words should be chosen wisely.
Finally, I’d like such maps to be vectorized, but I guess that’s only possible with one of the advanced, payable versions of Google Earth. Maybe it would even fit in better then.