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National People's Army 1956-1990 (East Germany)

Nationale Volksarmee

Last modified: 2012-11-03 by pete loeser
Keywords: germany | east germany | german democratic republic | historical | military | national people's army | nationale volksarmee | nva | coat of arms | wreath (gold) | text: german |
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[War Flag 1955-1990 (East Germany)] 3:5 Image by Jaume Ollé
Flag adopted 1960, abolished 1990

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     The National People’s Army (NPA), or Nationale Volksarmee (NVA) were the armed forces of the German Democratic Republic (GDR). The NVA was established on March 1, 1956, and disbanded on October 2, 1990. The National People’s Army was originally created six months after the formation of the West German Bundeswehr from the Kasernierte Volkspolizei (Barracked People's Police). It was preceded by years of preparation during which former Wehrmacht officers and Communist veterans of the Spanish Civil War helped organize and train paramilitary units of the People's Police.
     The Potsdam Agreement in 1945 was adopted by the four Allies (USSR, USA, Great Britian and France) for the demilitarization of Germany. In both German states only police forces were established. The four Allies had the military power in Germany. The Potsdam Agreement was valid for 10 years, afterwhich two German Army were founded, the Bundeswehr and the Nationale Volksarmee.
Jens Pattke, 28 January 2012

War Flag 1960-1990
Service Flag of the National People's Army
Dienstflagge der Nationalen Volksarmee

The state flag with the central symbol in the flag of first secretary of the central committee. Illustrated in Pedersen 1979, p. 45 and Oliver 1993, p. 2. [Illustrated at the top of this page.]
Norman Martin, 13 January 1998

The German Democratic Republic also adopted a distinctive war ensign and war flag. The latter was red with central horizontal black-red-gold stripes, and defaced with the state arms enclosed within a laurel wreath. The war flag was similar to the state flag, but with a laurel wreath enclosing the state arms.
Tom Gregg, 10 January 1997

According to Pedersen 1980 the war flag was adopted in 1960.
Mark Sensen, 21 June 2000

Standard of the National People's Army
Standarte der Nationalen Volksarmee

[Standard of the National People's Army (East Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

The state flag with the Arms slightly smaller, surrounding the arms a red circle with the letters "FÜR DEN SCHUTZ DER ARBEITER UND BAUERN MACHT" ["For the protection of the power of the workers and farmers"], surrounding the circle a gold wreath. The overall emblem approximately the relative size of the arms in the state flag. Surrounded by a gold fringe (except at hoist). Illustrated in Oliver 1993, p. 3 and Taschenkalender der Nationalen Volksarmee, p. 241.
Norman Martin, 13 January 1998

Army Border Units Ensign 1962-1990
Ensign for Boats of the Border Troops of the National People's Army
Dienstflagge der Boote der Grenztruppe der Nationalen Volksarmee

[Army Border Units Ensign 1962-1990 (East Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

Like the National People's Army flag except with a vertical green stripe 1/5 of width of flag in the hoist. In use 1962-1990. Illustrated in Pedersen 1979, p. 45 and Oliver 1993, p. 2, 29.
Norman Martin, 13 January 1998

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