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Voices of surrender : A podcast tells the end of the war from the perspective of the Allies

It was a historic moment that ended the Second World War in Europe after endless suffering. On May 8, 1945, the leadership of the Wehrmacht signed the surrender of the Wehrmacht in the Soviet headquarters - today's German-Russian Museum - in the presence of the Allies.

On this occasion - and because Corona no longer allows - the German-Russian Museum is commemorating the event in a podcast entitled "The signing of surrender in Berlin-Karlshorst in the memoirs of those involved".

“We stood around […] and stepped from one foot to the other. Everyone grew tired and weary. Tedder sat out the situation calmly. He stuffed his pipe one after the other and puffed [...]. The negotiators who handled the revision of the terms of surrender were assisted by Ike's [Eisenhower's] secretary Lieutenant Sergeant Nana Rae, who wisely brought her typewriter. […] With the new version it was like being in a dovecote ”, reports the American captain Harry C. Butcher of the struggle for the final wording of the document of surrender, which was finally signed at 0.16 am. Butcher was a personal advisor to General Dwight D. Eisenhower - also known as Ike.

[Battle of Berlin: The last days of World War II - read more on Tagesspiegel Plus]

In a 19-minute podcast, Director Jörg Morré has compiled and dramatically condensed quotes from the Russian General Georgi Schukow, the French General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny and the British Marshal Arthur Tedder, so that the surrender is described for the first time from the perspective of the Allies.

So far, the events in Germany have mainly been told on the basis of Wehrmacht files, the documentation of which ended with the surrender of Reims on May 7th.

It's interesting to hear how those involved reacted and judged each other. The French initially missed their flag, which was then hastily sewn, the Germans were perceived as arrogant until they left the ceremony defeated.

The podcast provides surprising insights into a supposedly familiar story. For example, that Tedder noticed the pungent smell of the burning city on arrival at Tempelhof Airport. The podcast will first be published in German on May 8th. Versions in English and Russian are to follow.

The website of the museum also has a virtual tour of the anniversary exhibition “From Casablanca to Karlshorst - 75 Years of the End of the War in Europe” from 2020. The traditional “Toast for Peace”, which takes place every year at the museum festival on May 8th with speeches by civil society organizations from all participating countries in the capitulation hall must also take place virtually this year.

Teenagers and young adults from Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, USA, Great Britain and France will be heard in video messages on the museum's website.

More information at www.museum-karlshorst.de

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