The History of the Germans from Mérk and Vállaj, Deported to the Soviet Union for Forced Labour 1945–1949

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Abstract

The deportation - in German: Verschleppung - was a ‘taboo' for a long time. However, the works born since the change of regime provide an excellent and overall picture about this painful historical act. At the same time, it is desirable to get a more precise picture by examining the detailed history of the deportation in the case of the individual settlements. Merk and Valla), the Swabian settlements in the Szatmar region, in the eastern part of the country, lie on the periphery in several aspects. Still, considering the numerical proportion of their population, the most displaced persons were deported by the Soviets, as war criminals, from here in 1945 - a quarter of whom never saw their beloved ones and home country again. It is the particular tragedy of this fact that those deported were at least as much bound to their recipient country, the Hungarian nation, as to their German nationality. They are not criminals of war but victims of the war of racial discrimination. ‘Who will be responsible for these people suffering innocently?’ - puts the question Ferenc Juhasz, parish priest in Merk at that time. Giving an answer is the task of all of us. The paper seeks to explore a segment of the micro-texture of the country-wide, and even wider, regional trauma of this community, based on diary excerpts from the period as well as on individual, specialized literature research.

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