On July 29, 1992, a black Mercedes pulled up outside the Moabit detention center in Berlin. with tinted windows. A new prisoner was brought in — — Erich Honecker, former long-term leader of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) and general secretary of the Central Committee of the Socialist Unity Party of Germany (SED).
In prison, Honecker immediately started keeping a diary . Here is what he recorded on the second day of his detention, July 30, 1992: “…57 years later, I againI see the Moabit prison complex from the inside. In 1935 The Gestapo brought me here from their main building on Prinz-Albrecht-Straße. I was here under pre-trial detention for a year and a half. How long will I be in this time?". This time, Honecker will spend less than six months in prison. And in many ways, by the will of people who for a long time called themselves communists.
“Guilty of everything!”
In the autumn of 1989, Erich Honecker was removed from all party and state posts, and a little later expelled from the ranks of the party itself. The official statement said that the SED Central Committee complied with the request of Erich Honecker to dismiss him from the post of General Secretary, Chairman of the State Council and Chairman of the National Defense Council of the GDR due to health reasons. By that time, he really had serious health problems. And comrades in the party announced to the whole country about the leader's fatal illness.
The new “progressive leadership” The GDR, in an effort to win the sympathy of the East Germans, announced that the houses of the former leaders would be given over to sanatoriums. Sick Erich Honecker and his wife were literally thrown into the street. According to the established tradition, the dismissed leader was accused of all mortal sins, including corruption. Honecker's collection of weapons was confiscated, consisting mostly of gifts. At the same time, his “multi-million dollar wealth” turned out to be a myth, only 218,000 rubles were found in a personal bank account. stamps of the GDR.
During the prosecution of the former leader, even after the operation to remove a cancerous tumor, he was placed in a prison, but soon released. Shelter Honecker and his wife found in the house of the pastor Uwe Holmerwho took care of the monastery hospital. Later there was a Soviet military hospital on the territory of Germany. During the next examination, Honecker was diagnosed with a tumor in the liver.
Invitation of the Secretary General
As early as October 2, 1990, on the eve of the reunification of Germany, materials on Honecker were transferred by the Prosecutor General's Office of the GDR to the Prosecutor General's Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, and on November 30, the court issued a warrant for his arrest. March 13, 1991, the former leader of the Eastern Germany and his wife flew to Moscow on a Soviet military plane. The exiles lived for several months as “personal guests” the President of the USSR. It must be said that relations between Gorbachev and Honecker were not cloudless. The head of the GDR opposed perestroika, although at first he did not take it very seriously. «If a neighbor decided to re-paste the wallpaper in —— —— we don't have to follow his example here. Honecker later wrote: “Now it has become clear to everyone that the CPSU, under the leadership of Gorbachev, surrendered both the Soviet Union and all the countries of the Warsaw Pact to the imperialists. Now everything is starting again, perhaps the Third World War is already on. And Gorbachev, in turn, claimed that Honecker had lost his sense of reality. And still the necessary conditions for life and treatment of Erich Honecker and his wife in the Soviet Union were provided.
After the GKChP, the situation around Honecker worsened. The influence of Gorbachev in the country fell almost to zero, the German authorities were increasingly demanding the extradition of the former leader of the GDR. For him, they began to look for options — Cuba, China, North Korea… Honecker's wife Margot flew to Chile, where their daughterSonya lived with her Chilean husband. It was the GDR authorities that at one time gave shelter to many Chileans expelled from the country by the Pinochet junta. In the Chilean embassy in the USSR, after he was ordered to leave our country, Erich Honecker also found refuge.
The former head of the GDR had a significant difference from the rest of the quickly reorganized party functionaries — he didn change his mind. Here is an excerpt from his last speech at the trial on December 3rd, 1992: "I am sure that the history of the GDR was not in vain. She proved that socialism is possible and can better than capitalism… Humanity will never refuse search for new ideas and ways to build a society of justice because of our failed experiment».
Honecker was also characterized by extraordinary actions. Thus, an implacable fighter against American imperialism, he ordered the purchase of a million jeans in USA in 1978. At the same time, until the end of his life, he remained an idealist. When, on a walk in the prison, he met his friend and colleague in the Politburo, the former Minister of State Security of the GDR Erich Mielke, who was awaiting trial, he was very surprised that he did not answer his greeting.
But it hardly was so surprised when Boris Yeltsin decided to make a gift to "friend Helmut" (to German Chancellor Helmut Kohl). December 10, 1991 Minister of Justice of the RSFSR Nikolai Fedorov presented a seriously ill 79-year-old Erich Honecker with a demand to leave the territory of the USSR (the fact that he was there at the invitation of the allied authorities did not embarrass anyone). After that, Honecker found shelter in the & nbsp; Chilean embassy. Kohl put pressure on the Chilean authorities, and they found a formal reason for expelling Honecker — he was accused of feigning illness. Say, a new examination called into question the previous diagnosis. As soon as the ex-head of the GDR left the Chilean embassy, he was put on a plane and sent to Berlin, where he and was escorted to Moabit prison. A CT scan done on August 4, 1992 confirmed the oncological diagnosis. In January of the following year, Honecker was released from custody, and he immediately flew to family in Santiago. He died there same two and a half years later, before expiring 82 years.
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