Field Marshal Montgomery Wanted Boy Scouts To Help Rehabilitate Germany From Nazism

The plan underlined many ideas of how the Allies would rebuild the German society after the Second World War, emphasizing the need for free press and freedom of speech. The first draft of the Top Secret plan was handwritten by Field Marshal Montgomery, who marked the document with several notes.  One of the copies, held by an United States senior intelligence officer is set to go up for sale at Nate D Saunders auctioneers in Los Angeles, where the draft is expected to sell for at least $8,000.

Field Marshal Montgomery’s plan was to win the hearts of the German people, soon after the Allies took over Germany, following the end of the Second World War and the end of Adolf Hitler. He encouraged British soldiers to connect with people in Germany and to talk to them as much as possible, to socialize with men in the streets and play games with kids, to meet up and create a ‘strong bulwark against Nazism’. He believed the church would be vital in reintegrating German people into a world not suppressed by a murderer and a Nazi commander.

The ‘Top Secret’ plan was written by Field Marshal Montgomery two months after the death of Adolf Hitler and Germany’s surrender, on July 14, 1945. The document was addressed to the chief commanders of the other 3 parts of Germany: the Americans, the Russians and the French. The copy of the document which is now up for sale, belonged to a senior United States intelligence officer.

The British zone of Germany following the end of the war, was in the north west, including Hamburg, 20 million citizens and two million German prisoners of war. During the first weeks, up until the document was written, Allied troops were not even allowed to speak to civilians, nor could they smile at them. This was their way of showing how much damage the Nazi party had caused the world, the Mail Online reports.

Beginning with July 1945, Montgomery encouraged the Allied troops to engage with the Germans. ‘There is much fertile soil for the seeds of trouble. We cannot solve the problem without the aid of the German people. These notes deal with the methods we will adopt,” he wrote. He wanted the Allies to have real contact with the German people, to talk to them and to play with children.

Auction manager, Laura Yntema said the document is not only important but also fascinating, revealing the process of a successful integration of Germany into a Nazi free world.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE