From Time, Issue of Monday, May 27, 1946:
To re-educate Germany, the Allies last week adopted a typically Nazi device. The four-power Coordinating Committee decided to reduce to pulp all “undemocratic, militaristic and Nazi” literature, museum and library material, newspapers, films and war memorials. Tombstones were excepted.
Here is how the Allies went about the suppression of ideas:
Into Berlin’s press camp breezed a pretty young ex-WAC introduced as Vivian Cox, an “expert” attached to the Military Directorate. Sitting on a desk and dangling her long, nylon-clad legs, Miss Cox answered indignant newsmen’s questions in a pleasant Southern drawl. How would “militaristic” be defined, asked one reporter. Replied Miss Cox: “It’s the way the Germans have of waging war.” How would “democratic” be defined? Said Miss Cox: “Everything American people think and call democratic.” Was the order different in principle from Nazi book burnings? No, not in Miss Cox’s opinion.
Just 13 years ago, the Nazis had confiscated and burned millions of “un-German” books. The war had destroyed hundreds of thousands more. Now the Allied order would eliminate millions more. Pessimists could see the day approaching when Germans would have nothing left to read except perhaps some of Grimm’s lighter fairy tales. Cracked one British officer to a U.S. colleague: “You people might yet be able to convert the Germans to your comics....”
The measure found its defenders. Said one U.S. official: “At least the Germans won’t be able to read Clausewitz these long summer nights.” Said a Russian: “If more of them were out ploughing fields instead of reading, there would be more food.” But most observers condemned the order as a piece of unenforceable foolishness which would only increase interest in the verboten books, and martyrize Germany’s nationalistic spirit.