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Secret Report of the Soviet Military Leadership on the Events of June 17-19, 1953 (June 24, 1953)

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10. To hold the IV Party Convention of SED in the next 3-4 months, in which the questions of the party's role in the establishment of the new direction would be discussed. During this convention to seriously renew the ranks of the CC, so as to include a greater number of younger personnel, who have excelled in their work with the working classes, working peasants, as well as the intelligentsia. To radically renew the ranks of the CC SED Politburo, purging it of members who do not demonstrate the necessary capabilities required of leaders of the party and of the State in these times.

11. To carry out a special investigation of the work of the professional unions and to make decisive changes in the ranks of the leaders of corresponding organs, as well as to introduce new regulations that would radically change the role of the professional unions in step with the requirements of the new direction.

12. To reexamine the ranks, the organization and the distribution of the people's police of the GDR, to arm it with modern weapons, including armored transports and armored vehicles, and with communications equipment, as well as to create, drawing from the ranks of current detachments of barracks-based police, mobile detachments of sufficient readiness and strength as to be able to maintain order and peace in the Republic without the help of the Soviet military.

To reorganize the currently existing army corpus of the GDR into a national guard-type army, along the lines of the one existing in Western Germany.

13. To give the SNM organization the character of a broad-based non-party organization of youth, using the experience of earlier German youth organizations. To make changes in the leadership ranks of the Central Soviet of the Union of German Youth (SNM).

14. To change the character of the diplomatic delegation in the Soviet Union from the GDR, and their assignments. To strengthen cultural and technical ties between the GDR and the Soviet Union. To reduce vacations and sanatorium trips of SED functionaries to the Soviet Union and other countries, and increase the vacations and sanatorium trips of prominent members of German intelligentsia, workers, members of other parties, as well as tourists.

15. In order to raise the international prestige of the GDR and the authority of the GDR government in the eyes of the German populace, to have the new government, chosen by the Chamber of the People, make an official visit to Moscow.

16. After the changes in the military situation in East Berlin, to hold it unwise to continue to maintain the border of East Berlin with West Berlin open, until the commandants of West Berlin take the necessary steps to guarantee that agents and provocateurs, who carry out subversive activities against GDR in East Berlin, are no longer sent from West Berlin. With regard to this, to establish, in the immediate future, a system of permanent and temporary visas to allow the crossing of the border between East and West Berlin, however, making sure not to create unnecessary difficulties and, in general, considering the interests of the German population.

17. To entrust the Commanding Group of Soviet occupational forces in Germany to improve the distribution of Soviet forces, keeping in mind the lessons learned during the events of 17 June, and, in particular, to see that the necessary number of tank detachments are quartered in Berlin.

V. Sokolovskii
V. Semyenov
P. Yudin

24 June 1953

Source of original Russian document: Report from Vasilii Sokolovskii, Vladimir Semyonov, and Pavel Yudin “On the Events of 17-19 June 1953 in Berlin and the GDR and Certain Conclusions from these Events” (June 24, 1953); Fund 06, Opis 12a, Papka 5, Delo 301, Listy 1-51, Archive of Foreign Policy, Russian Federation (AVP RF), Moscow; document obtained and provided by Vladislav M. Zubok, National Security Archive; translated by Danny Rozas, available at the CWIHP Virtual Archive, (accessed on November 4, 2008).

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