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NAZWA


The need to make a living – often not only for themselves, but for dependants too, in a situation of extreme poverty and shortages – also created another, less favourable image of post-war German women. Fräulein Veronika Dankeschön became the wayward sister of the Trümmerfrau. In American military circles Veronika Dankeschön was a euphemism for venereal diseases and their spread in almost epidemic proportions, particularly among the American occupation forces in post-war Germany. Prostitution was widespread and very welcome to ordinary soldiers. For obvious reasons, army officers and American government officials were less pleased with these developments and launched an aggressive media campaign against prostitution and German–American sexual relations in their zone. In countless cartoons and articles Veronika Dankeschön was depicted as a disease-ridden seductress. She was "at best" naively immoral and hungry for sex, "at worst" an Aryan siren who used her sexual powers to undermine the American victory through an attack on the soldiers' morale and virility.

RAINGARD ESSER - Language No Obstacle: war brides in the German press, 1945-49
(Women’s History Review, Volume 12, Number 4, 2003)