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GIs in Germany
The Social, Economic, Cultural, and Political History of the American Military Presence


Part of Publications of the German Historical Institute

Thomas W. Maulucci, Jr, Hans-Jaochim Harder, Bruno Thosse, Dennis Showalter, Hubert Zimmerman, Thomas Leuerer, Theodor Scharnholz, Donna Alvah, Gerhard Fürmetz, Jennifer V. Evans, Klaus Naumann, Wolfgang Schmidt, Alexander Vazansky, Howard J. De Nike, Anni Baker, Lou Martin, Dewey Browder
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  • Date Published: October 2015
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107559721

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About the Authors
  • The fifteen essays in this volume offer a comprehensive look at the role of American military forces in Germany. The American military forces in the Federal Republic of Germany after WWII played an important role not just in the NATO military alliance but also in German-American relations as a whole. Around twenty-two-million US servicemen and their dependants have been stationed in Germany since WWII, and their presence has contributed to one of the few successful American attempts at democratic nation building in the twentieth century. In the social and cultural realm the GIs helped to Americanize Germany, and their own German experiences influenced the US civil rights movement and soldier radicalism. The US military presence also served as a bellwether for overall relations between the two countries.

    • Presents the first comprehensive history of the United States' military presence in Germany in twenty-five years
    • Describes one of the most important international relationships of the last seventy-five years
    • Includes fifteen contributions by leading scholars
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… worth a read not just for its account of the cultural, political, and social history that created the relationship between Germany and the United States today, but also to serve as a lesson for the pitfalls that our military is sure to face as it changes how forces are postured in the years to come.' Military Review

    'This is a too-rare moment of genuine collaboration and cooperation between American and German scholars who bring together a range of perspectives on the American military presence in Germany … the editors and contributors who patiently assembled this book should be very proud. Any scholar whose work touches on America's Cold War Army or on postwar German history will benefit from this volume.' Journal of Military History

    'The authors have made valuable contributions to the nation's military history and to the study of international relations … scholars of American military history, international relations, and international social history will certainly find this volume to be a valuable addition to their reading lists.' H-Net Reviews

    'This diverse collection offers a nuanced assessment of whether and how the massive US military presence contributed to Americanization from above and below as well as to Americanism. It will be of interest to students of American military history, the Cold War, postwar West Germany, and the 1970s.' Mary Nolan, The Journal of American History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2015
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107559721
    • length: 378 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.51kg
    • contains: 2 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction Thomas W. Maulucci, Jr
    Part I. Strategy and Politics:
    1. Guarantors of peace and freedom: the US forces in Germany, 1945–90 Hans-Joachim Harder
    2. Deterrence and defense: the stationing of US troops in Germany and the implementation of forward strategy in Europe, 1950–67 Bruno Thosse
    3. The war that was never fought: the US army, the Bundeswehr, and the NATO central front Dennis Showalter
    4. Why they did not go home: the GIs and the battle over their presence in the 1960s and 1970s Hubert Zimmermann
    Part II. Military Communities:
    5. United States army military communities in Germany Thomas Leuerer
    6. German-American relations at the local level: Heidelberg, 1948–55 Theodor Scharnholz
    7. American military families in West Germany: social, cultural, and foreign relations, 1946–65 Donna Alvah
    Part III. Tensions between Neighbors:
    8. Insolent occupiers, aggressive protectors: policing GI delinquency in early 1950s Germany Gerhard Fürmetz
    9. Protection from the protector: court-martial cases and the lawlessness of occupation in American-controlled Berlin, 1945–8 Jennifer V. Evans
    Part IV. The German Armed Forces and the American Model:
    10. The godfathers of Innere Führung? The American military model and the creation of the Bundeswehr Klaus Naumann
    11. From Befehlsausgabe to 'briefing': the Americanization of the Luftwaffe Wolfgang Schmidt
    Part V. The 1970s and 1980s:
    12. 'Army in anguish': the United States army, Europe in the early 1970s Alexander Vazansky
    13. The US military and dissenters in the ranks: Germany 1970–5 Howard J. De Nike
    14. The US armed forces and the development of anti-NATO protests in West Germany, 1980–9 Anni Baker
    15. GIs under seige: the German peace movement confronts the US military Lou Martin
    Appendix: population statistics on the US armed forces in Germany, 1945–2000 Dewey Browder.

  • Editors

    Thomas W. Maulucci, Jr, American International College
    Thomas W. Maulucci, Jr is Associate Professor of History at American International College. He is the author of Adenauer's Foreign Office: West German Diplomacy in the Shadow of the Third Reich (2012).

    Detlef Junker, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany
    Detlef Junker is Senior Distinguished Professor of History and founding director of the Heidelberg Center for American Studies at Heidelberg University. He is the editor of the two-volume handbook The United States and Germany in the Era of the Cold War, 1945–1990 (2004).


    Thomas W. Maulucci, Jr, Hans-Jaochim Harder, Bruno Thosse, Dennis Showalter, Hubert Zimmerman, Thomas Leuerer, Theodor Scharnholz, Donna Alvah, Gerhard Fürmetz, Jennifer V. Evans, Klaus Naumann, Wolfgang Schmidt, Alexander Vazansky, Howard J. De Nike, Anni Baker, Lou Martin, Dewey Browder

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