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Ten years after the war, 10000 German soldiers are still in Russian captivity, their fate preoccupying their relatives as well as the public in both West and East Germany. During his visit to Moscow, Chancellor Konrad Adenauer is able to achieve their release, thereby increasing his popularity even more. After the state visit, the Federal Republic of Germany and the Soviet Union take up diplomatic relations.

West Germany’s association with the Western Allied Powers, vehemently demanded by Chancellor Adenauer, is finalised with the establishment of the “Bundeswehr,“ West Germany’s  new armed forces. For fourty hours, members of the Bundestag heatedly debate over the controversial issue of the country’s rearmament. The beginning of the military build-up in the GDR is marked by the establishment of the People’s Police.

What else happened?

For the first time, East German customs officers use X-rays to inspect parcels coming from the West.

The Isetta microcar is a major sales success for BMW.

Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi of Iran and his wife Soraya visit the Federal Republic of Germany. They receive an enthusiastic welcome.

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