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German History in Documents and Images
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"Peace is the Emergency" (1969)
The critical Protestant Gustav Heinemann (CDU) was Minister of the Interior from 1949 to 1950. He resigned his office to protest West Germany’s imminent rearmament. In the mid-fifties, he expressed massive opposition to plans to arm the Bundeswehr with nuclear weapons and switched his party affiliation to the SPD. In his inaugural speech as Federal President in 1969, he appealed to the responsibility of all politicians to fight for peace. Photo by Kurt Rohwedder.