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Herbert Hupka (1975)

Herbert Hupka (August 15, 1915 ‚Äď August 24, 2006) was a German journalist and politician (CDU, formerly SPD).

Hupka was born in Diyatalawa, Sri Lanka, to a Catholic professor and a Jewish-German Lutheran Protestant mother. Herbert Hupka raised in Ratibor, Upper Silesia (Free State of Prussia, Germany). In his younger years Hupka was raised in the Catholic religion and close to the democratic Catholic Zentrum party. After having served in the Germany Army at the Eastern Front, and after having completed his Habilitation, Hupka was expelled from the Wehrmacht in August 1944 for reasons of officially being a "half-Jew" because his mother was Jewish; she survived deportation to and internment in Theresienstadt concentration camp. Following World War II their Upper Silesian hometown became part of the territory of the People's Republic of Poland and Hupka and his mother were subsequently expelled to West Germany.

The expellees' issues formed the kernel of his political activities. He was the chairman of the Landsmannschaft Schlesien from 1968 to 2000. He was also chairman of the Eastern German Culture Council and vice-chairman of the Federation of Expellees from historical eastern Germany.

Hupka was a member of the Bundestag from 1969-1987 and president of the Landsmannschaft Schlesien from 1968-2000. He was also president of the Eastern German Culture Council (German: Ostdeutscher Kulturrat) and Vice-President of the Federation of Expellees (Bund der Vertriebenen).

Hupka had opposed the Ostpolitik initiated by Willy Brandt and carried on by further SPD and even (later) CDU-led administrations. These policies subscribed to the acceptance of the territorial changes that took place after the Second World War; this line explicitly denied all attempts to regain these territories and former provinces, which had become parts of Poland or the Russian Socialist Soviet Republic. Herbert Hupka, on the other hand, spoke in favour of incorporating the territories into a unified, future German state. His opinions, which were regarded as revanchist, made him unpopular not only with the left, as he opposed the recognition of the Oder-Neiße border with the People's Republic of Poland. On 29 February 1972, Hupka crossed the floor from the Bundestag faction of the SPD to the CDU/CSU faction. Nevertheless, in 1985 CDU-leader and federal chancellor Helmut Kohl also refused to speak at the Landsmannschaft Schlesien's annual conference unless its theme, "Schlesien bleibt unser" ("Silesia remains ours [i.e. German]") was changed to a less controversial theme. Hupka was one of the Landsmannschaft's members who refused to change the theme, thereby conflicting heavily with Kohl, leader of the CDU. In the end he agreed to change the name to "Silesia remains our future in a common Europe of free nations".

Hupka, once the target of Polish and Soviet communist (and nationalist) propaganda, was later employed as an advisor by the local government of present-day Silesia and was awarded the title of a honorary citizen of Racibórz, the historic town of his youth. At the old age, Hupka partially gave up his former views on totally restoring the pre-1945 borders of Germany and became a conditional supporter of the German-Polish rapprochment. Hupka died in Bonn, after a fatal accident in his home.


This article incorporates information from the German Wikipedia.
  • See German article.


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