The West German Economic Miracle.
Discuss The West German Economic Miracle.
Post War Period in West Germany: The West German Economic Miracle
West Germany experienced many political and economic changes that established its leadership and economic foundation in the post-war era. Firstly, the West Germany established a democratic system that would succeed and result to the formation of a stable government. The democracy worked since the Nazi regime was discredited in the eyes of many West Germans due to their contribution in the war. The growth of West Germany economy significantly contributed to the success of Germany democracy after the Second World War. West Germany operated under basic law. It became a federal republic with a weak president and an election cycle of every four years.
The location of the capital of West Germany was an essential factor for its economic growth. The initial capital for Germany was Berlin. However, it was not suitable to be used as capital for West Germany. The decision was reached to make Bonn the capital of West Germany. However, the capital was moved to Berlin due to its strategic location and political significance. Germany held its first post war elections in 1949. The Christian Democratic Union party under the leadership of Konrad Adenauer formed the Government. Konrad insisted that the new West Germany state had a good relationship with other western countries to sustain growth and development. Among the countries that were on his interest list were France and the United States of America. Besides, the Christian Union Party was committed to enhancing freedom and democracy in West Germany.
The 1954 world cup was a significant event for West Germany. The country won for the first time after the war. This was a symbol of something much more than victory. It was followed by a time of reconciliation when Germany sought to reach out to countries that were divested by Germany’s warring activities such as France. Stability in Western Europe would only be achieved if France and West Germany war working together, especially in critical economic engagements. West Germany got into a reparation treaty with Israel in 1952 to have its citizens compensated for losing their families during the war. The Israel government got a huge amount of money from the West Germany treasury, and individual Jews were compensated.
In 1955, the federal republic was allowed to join NATO that initially included the United States, the UK, and France. The idea was to make the West Germany army on NATO command to prevent future aggression from the country. The incident involving Rudolf Augstein and Conrad Ahlers was an actual test of democracy and freedom to West Germany, especially concerning press freedom. The West German officials went to Spain and kidnapped Rudolf, where he was having his holiday for publishing a controversial article. This act was seen as a tactic used by the Nazis during the Second World War. It communicated that West Germany was practicing paper democracy and was not committed to achieving utmost liberalism. The incident attracted countrywide protests against the government. The people of West Germany stood up against their government not to allow abuses of the free press. The government officials who order the arrest and trial of the two individuals were made to resign.
The economic miracle in West Germany started to be experienced when the government began to push for export-driven economy. One of the chief export commodities was automobile, especially Volkswagen beetle and BMW. Germany adopted social market economy. Primarily, this is a capitalist economy involving free market concept. The government provided excellent social services to citizens if they were going to struggle in the type of the economy. For instance, the West German government would provide for health services for the jobless ill citizens. The government understood that people are likely to adapt radical politics when they are economically desperate. The inexpensive labor force from Germans who lives outside the country fueled the growth of West Germany when they began to come back from various countries in Europe. The volksdeutsche were critical in providing crucial affordable labor for the development of West Germany. They began to move to the West to experience freedom that was realized in the region.
The common export good from Germany included cameras. Even today, Germany produces some of the finest consumer cameras. The country improved its camera production capacity in 1960. However, China became a significant player in the production and export of cameras. Germany was also known for high quality dolls that were widely accepted in the global market. Nonetheless, the garment industry was an essential aspect of the German economy after the second world. Primarily, West Germany became a major manufacture of garments with recognized fashion brands around the world. An example of an individual who played an essential role in the Germans cloth-making industry is Hugo Boss. The car manufacturing companies used slave labor during World War II to increase their production. However, this was not widely discussed after the war.