East German Advisors Overseas

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George Lepre
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Re: East German Advisors Overseas

Post by George Lepre » 04 Apr 2021 22:58

For his book, Major Storkmann consulted GDR military documents that were secret when they were generated. Specifically, he used the records of the Ministry of National Defense, which today are archived in Freiburg i.B., the Ministry of State Security, which are kept at BStU in Berlin, and several other agencies. He also conducted interviews with a considerable number of retired NVA officers. His finding (p. 565): "Die eingangs zitierten Pressemeldungen ueber Einsaetze von Tausenden ostdeutschen Soldaten in Afrika haben sich in der Untersuchung nicht bestaetigt."

What Storkmann did find, however, was the following:

a) Many Africans from GDR-friendly countries attended military schools in East Germany.

b) In Zanzibar, two East German officials were sent, disguised as a film crew, at some point prior to 1964. Later, fifteen naval officials assisted with coastal defense.

c) In Ethiopia, transport pilots flew in aid, and a handful (he uses the word "einzelne") of physicians were employed at a GDR-established medical facility. He mentions the possibility that three security officials were brought in to arrange the building's security.

d) In Mozambique, five high-ranking East German army officers (including two generals and one colonel) and ten MfS officials visited the country for four weeks in January 1985. Their purpose was to study the political and security situations in the country in order to ensure that it was safe for GDR aid workers to operate there.

During the Cold War, information on the East bloc forces was so difficult to obtain let alone prove, so stories like this took on lives of their own in the West. Even Hollywood jumped on the bandwagon, with the 1977 film The Wild Geese featuring East German advisors commanding African troops.

George

KLange
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Re: East German Advisors Overseas

Post by KLange » 21 Apr 2021 07:16

So no chance on NVA advisors anywhere in the Third World?

George Lepre
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Re: East German Advisors Overseas

Post by George Lepre » 13 Aug 2021 03:02

Hello -

I only read what the major wrote about Africa. For those who do not read German, here is a free article in English regarding East German work brigades that operated in Angola:

https://www.degruyter.com/document/doi/ ... 43-012/pdf

This article provides a fine overview of what was happening there.

George

KLange
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Re: East German Advisors Overseas

Post by KLange » 30 Sep 2021 04:57

George Lepre wrote:
22 May 2016 23:06
Hi Klemen -

Major Strokmann found that there had been no DDR military advisors in Africa. However, there were DDR civilians there assisting in countries that possessed friendly governments.

Here is an example. This is a book written by former DDR citizens who worked in various capacities in Mozambique. Note that there are no military advisors:

http://www.amazon.de/hinterlassen-Erleb ... 3825883213

Best regards,

George
So there were no DDR military advisors anywhere in the Third World?

KLange
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Posts: 33
Joined: 29 Jun 2006 22:54
Location: MI

Re: East German Advisors Overseas

Post by KLange » 08 Oct 2021 07:25

George Lepre wrote:
22 May 2016 23:06
Hi Klemen -

Major Strokmann found that there had been no DDR military advisors in Africa. However, there were DDR civilians there assisting in countries that possessed friendly governments.

Here is an example. This is a book written by former DDR citizens who worked in various capacities in Mozambique. Note that there are no military advisors:

http://www.amazon.de/hinterlassen-Erleb ... 3825883213

Best regards,

George
Just Mozambique, or Africa in general?

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