Prisoners of War: The Return of the Ten Thousand

The return of the last German prisoners of war in 1955 constitutes one of the most moving chapters in German post-war history. "The Return of the Ten thousand" describes the hopes and fears which arose, in the prisoner of war camps and back home - in both West and East Germany.

The pictures are still touching today: images of German men welcomed back home in the fall of 1955 with a huge wave of emotions. Mothers clasp their sons in their arms, wives greet their husbands - after over 10 years apart. Children stand speechless in front of their fathers, men they can remember only vaguely... if at all. And in fact the release of these prisoners very nearly did not come about. The German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer journeyed to Moscow in the summer of 1955 in the hope of securing the release of the last German prisoners of war, but the Soviets refused his request. Then, as Adenauer was about to leave, Khrushchev invited him to the opera. And that evening changed everything.

Length 1 x 45'
Year 2003
Genre Documentary
Format Digital Betacam
Director Sebastian Dehnhardt, Friederike Dreykluft
Boadcast ZDF