"Wie oft?" ("How often?") was a phrase understood by everyone in Berlin in the immediate aftermath of the second world war. "How often have you been raped by Russian soldiers?" was what was really meant.
Such a matter-of-fact exchange summed up how much it came to be taken for granted that German women suffered at the hands of Russian soldiers who captured Berlin. An estimated 2 million German women fell victim to the troops, 100,000 of them in Berlin. An estimated 10% of rape victims died, mostly from suicide. Many had abortions and those who did give birth often gave their babies up for adoption. In 1946 almost 4% of Berlin-born children were estimated to have Russian fathers.
When a candid diary account of the horrors,