Welcoming Address by the National Chairman

(In which Mr. Isert welcome all speakers for the Bundestreffen of the Bessarabain German Association on May 30, 2010 in Ludwigsburg)

Isert, Ingo Rüdiger. "Welcoming Address by the National Chairman." Mitteilungsblatt, July 2010, 5-6.

Translation from the original German-language text to American English is provided by Alex Herzog, Boulder, CO. 

Dear Countrymen,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

This year’s Bundestreffen is being held under the motto “70 Jahre nach der Umsiedlung [Seventy Years after the Resettlement].”

The Bessarabian Germans who were resettled in 1940 and fled Poland in 1945 have indeed “arrived” in the Federal Republic of Germany. They were well aware that there would be no return to their earlier homeland of Bessarabia, so they immediately faced their new situation and mastered it.

Minister Rech, to whom I hereby wish to extend a warm welcome, will be speaking to us on these topics, and on how things took their course. Mr. Minister, you are not only very knowledgeable about Bessarabian Germans, you are also, as suits your position and office, steeped in the history of those who were driven from their homeland...The State of Baden-Württemberg very trustingly looked after this group of people and even created a State exhibit in the Haus der Geschichte [House of History] in Stuttgart that deals with the integration of that group. We eagerly anticipate your talk, Mr. Minister.

As you know, ladies and gentlemen, we – the Bessarabian Germans – look not only at our own history; we also follow with serious attentiveness and sympathy the history and the fate of our former homeland of Bessarabia and its people. With that background, we are pleased to have been able to gain Graf Lambsdorff as another speaker. We hope that you are feeling a warm welcome! For several years leading up to January, 2010 Graf Lambsdorff was the German Ambassador in Chisinau [capital city of Moldova] and is currently the Foreign Office’s official representative for Southeast European matters. He is therefore profoundly familiar with the situation there.

Ladies and gentlemen, please take a look at the celebratory brochure and observe the title image, where you can see on the left side this year’s motto “70 Jahre nach der Umsiedlung.” Seventy years ago, in 1940, we saw the onset of dark and terrible times. The dark background is intended to express this. In the foreground, on a thin, bright stripe you see depicted two smartly dressed children carrying bread and salt, an offering of friendship and reconciliation instead of war. These children are the future of the country, and we wish that future to be a good one.

Following the historical excursions by Minister Rech and Graf Lambsdorff we will hear words of welcome from Mr. Ciocoi, chief officer of the Moldovan Embassy in Berlin, and also from Mr. Yarmilko, General Consul of Ukraine in Munich. I welcome both gentlemen, who with their presence today demonstrate the good and tension-free relationship between their nations and the Bessarabian Germans.

I would also like to extend an especially warm welcome and greeting to Mrs. Müller-Trimbusch, Mayoress of our state capital, the city of Stuttgart, the sponsoring city for Bessarabian Germans. It participates in our events with serious interest and has shown good will toward us in many different ways. Let me illustrate this with an especially fine example: In June the thus far nameless plaza in front of our Haus der Bessarabiendeutschen [House of Bessarabian Germans] will be given the official name of Bessarabienplatz [Bessarabian Plaza]!

I would further like to greet the First Mayor of the county city of Ludwigsburg, Mr. Seigfried, the landlord of this beautiful Forum, in which we have staged our large Bundestreffen for years. I would also like to welcome Mr.Reusch-Frey, the Deputy Lord Mayor of the city of Bietingheim-Bissingen.

Further, I welcome Mrs. Maaß, council chair and director of the Social Welfare Center Stetten, and Günther Vossler, chief officer of the Alexander Stift. We are certainly more than just friends of both of these institutions.

Special warm greetings to our guests from Bessarabia, who have come from long distances and have difficult travels behind them, and also to our guests from America.

I would also like to welcome members of the City Band of Esslingen, who are directed by Michael Unger, who, as I have learned, made a special trip from Venice to be here for this event!

In conclusion, I wish to express an especially warm welcome to my countrymen, our members, delegates and chairs of our Association, and I will now call out the names of three others who will also be speaking to us this morning and represent all of us: they are Arnulf Baumann, Vice Chairman of our Association, Dr. Edwin Kelm, Honorary Chairman of the Association, and Werner Schäfer, Managing Director of the Association and the organizer of today’s Bundestreffen.  

Our appreciation is extended to Alex Herzog for translation of this article.

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