Cover Osteuropa 6/2018

In Osteuropa 6/2018

Planned losses
On the calculation of material damage to the USSR caused by the Second World War, 1943–1947

Denis Babičenko

Deutsche Fassung


After the war, the “State Planning Committee” and the “Extraordinary Commission to Investigate German-Fascist Crimes Committed on Soviet Territory” undertook a calculation of the material war losses incurred by the Soviet Union. An examination of the data shows that the figures reported in the study were far higher than the real losses. The USSR used these calculations to justify the transfers of assets from East Germany and reparations from Germany’s former allies. These transfers led to a spurt in economic growth in the Soviet Union. Even if the official data on the losses and the claims for compensation were distorted, this does not relativize the destruction and mass murder caused by the Wehrmacht and the military units in the Soviet Union.

(Osteuropa 6/2018, pp. 143–164)