The "Property Owners Association - East, (EBO)," officially founded in January 2010, has announced new lawsuits for the former property of "expellees." This property consists of houses and land in regions, which, in the course of the creation of a new European order in the aftermath of World War II, were allotted to or returned to Poland or Czechoslovakia. In these regions numerous items of real estate had belonged to ethnic Germans at the time, which were taken over by the liberated countries, when the ethnic Germans were resettled to the west. The EBO maintains that this was an injustice, therefore, the "expellees" have a right to restitution, or even reparations. If Warsaw or Prague refuses negotiations on this question, the association will take the matter to court. This has been done already in the past, by an alliance under the name of the "Prussian Trust." (german-foreign-policy.com reported.) Until now, they have been unsuccessful, but are continuing their process of appeals.
Political Campaigns in Poland
As announced by the EBO, it is not limiting itself to the "issue of property rights." The organization is also demanding that "the expelling states pay a use compensation," on the grounds that, for decades, the German resettled were deprived of use of their property. The Czechoslovakian Beneš Decrees as well as the corresponding Bierut Decrees in Poland must be annulled, "Polish and Czech war criminals must be prosecuted." In addition, the EBO is demanding "bi-lingual street signs in all localities of Silesia, East Prussia, Pomerania and the Sudetenland" as well as measures (not more explicitly explained) for the "protection of the German minority" in Poland and the Czech Republic. Finally, the association announces its intention to wage a political (enlightenment) campaign in several Polish cities in the spring. According to the association, leaflets will be distributed, "explaining Polish crimes committed against German civilians and Polish violations of international law." This will be done in Zgorzelec, Szczecin, Wroclaw and Opole.
A report televised on Swiss TV gives an idea of the type of actions that can be expected in Poland. The TV station accompanied today's EBO President, Lars Seidensticker in the city of Otmuchow in southern Poland. Seidensticker claimed that his grandparents had owned a house there and that today, he is the legal owner. On a visit to Otmuchow, Seidensticker harassed not only Polish authorities - they should sign the house over to him - the Swiss television also filmed how he forced his way into the house, introducing himself as the "proprietor." The EBO's plan to initiate a supplementary political campaign in Poland, brings to mind earlier political activities carried out by the youth organization of the "League of Expellees." In 2004, for example, a group of "Silesian Youth" militants implanted wooden crosses along Polish country roads in commemoration of those Germans who died during resettlement and plastered posters reading, "No statute of limitations exists for murder." The following years, "Silesian Youth" members were involved in "East Trips" to Poland. Participants exchanged comments on the internet: "Yesterday, I had a dream; a Pole was hanging from a tree." Because of obvious extremist rightwing tendencies, the "Homeland Association - Silesia" has severed ties with the "Silesia Youth" national organization, which had been its official youth organization.
Militants of the "Silesian Youth" national organization were also on hand when, August 21, 2011, the Honorary President of the EBO, Alexander von Waldow, spoke at an event of the "Central Council of German Expellees," an extreme rightwing organization, which had split off from the "League of Expellees." As reported by the "Central Council," the EBO adopted a resolution to join the council on July 8, 2011. Waldow has since been a board member of the "Central Council." Waldow is known to be on the ultra right wing of the "Expellees," since he laid claim to a country estate of his aristocratic ancestors, the Palace Mierzecin, near Gorzow Wielkopolski. He has been quoted alleging that this is "stolen land." When Waldow showed up, it causes a commotion and outrage with Palace Mierzecin's current owners, who bought the castle in 1998.
Brotherly Love and the Holy Ghost
Waldow has forged plans for the future state organization of large portions of Poland. In a text, published on EBO's webpage, he contends that there is "still an alien administrative rule over purely German regions" in the former German Eastern Territories. This has to be changed. Therefore, Waldow pleads for detaching the former German East Territories from Poland and establishing a neutral nation "Zentropa." "Zentropa" should be founded "under EU aegis with its own constitution." It must be "founded" on "the commandment of brotherly love and the aid of the Holy Ghost."
The "Property Owners Association - East," closely affiliated with extreme rightwing "pro-" organizations (german-foreign-policy.com reported ), can feel encouraged by the fact that every West German government has characterized the resettlement as well as the uncompensated confiscation of the property of the resettled as an "injustice." According to the jurisprudence of the Federal Republic of Germany, the reparations issue is "open." (german-foreign-policy.com reported.) Most recently in the summer of 2011, the government of the federal state Hesse distributed a brochure in numerous schools, saying that the time has come to intensify "the search for feasible ways for (...) a just settlement, even in the difficult property issues." "There is a widespread idea that accomplished expulsion is irreversible, but it is false."