The Desert Rats in Berlin
The following pictures show the aftermath of the war witnessed by the Desert Rats after they arrived in Berlin 1945.
To read more about the days leading upto and shortly after VE day please go to the Engagements 1945 page, plus the Victory Parade in July 1945. Place your mouse over the picture to read more and click on them for larger versions.
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|The pictures below are courtesy of Corporal Norman Whyte, REME.|
Wrecked 88mm Dual Purpose AA-A/Tk gun on the streets of Berlin with a Diamond T Tank Transporter Tractor and Scammel recovery vehicle of the 7th Armoured Division REME behind.
Wrecked Tiger Tank on the streets of Berlin.
|Diamond T vehicle of the 7th Armoured Division REME in Berlin.||Newspaper clipping about the Division in Berlin.|
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The pictures below are from Driver Ken Pitt RASC courtesy of Ken Pitt.
|A very empty Autobahn, The RASC drivers could not get over its straightness and smooth surface. What a contrast after the years driving in the desert.||Posters of the famous three were plastered all over Berlin.|
|One of many posters all over Berlin of Roosevelt. Stalin and Churchill. The picture was in stark contrast to the open hostility between the Russian and British and American forces.||Berliners by the Brandenburg Gate|
|Berliners go about their daily life in front of a major building on the ruined city,||There was very little transport in private hands. Private cars like the one in the picture were mainly gas powered either by a bag on the roof or as in this case the gas was contained in the trailer behind.|
|Servicemen go about their daily life in the ruins of the city in front of the ruined Reichstag,||Berliners go about their daily life in the ruins of the city, near the Brandenburg Gate.|
|At least one Tram was working!||Food was scarce and to get it the civilian population worked clearing the streets of rubble. Many of the German girls working here to clear the rumble. Apparently they had been earlier raped by Russian soldiers, but although they were in a terrible state still worked all day under the protection of the Desert Rats.|
|There were dirty children everywhere who slept where they could. There was no soap, no working bathrooms so Driver Ken Pitt and some of the others who had children gave some of them a scrub and whatever else they could spare from their rations.||Three more children that were always on the lookout for some food, or soap, or chocolate. Life wasn't much fun for them at the end of the war.|
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The pictures below are from David Beaven RTR courtesy of Ian Beaven.
|The Brandenburg Gate||Unter Den Linden||Reichs Sports Stadium, then occupied by 8th King's Royal Irish Hussars|
|Black Market near the Reichs Chancellery.||One of many Russian posters all over Berlin, by the time the Desert Rats arrived.|
|Outside the Reichs Chancellery.||Wrecked Armoured Car outside the Reichs Chancellery.|
|Debris inside the Reichs Chancellery.||Chandelier inside the Reichs Chancellery.|
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To see pictures of the Victory Parade on 21st July 1945 please click here.
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