The Der Spiegel Affair, 1962

  • Der Spiegel was Germany's leading weekly political magazine with a readership of around 5 million.
  • A controversial article of 1961 accused Franz-Josef Strauss of reccommending the Fibag construction company for the construction of apartments for the US military in Germany.
  • They claimed this deal had been made because his friend, Hans Kapfinger, was a share-holder in the company.
  • An investigating parlimentary commission found Strauss not guilty of misconduct, but it soured his relationship with the paper and its owner Rudolf Augstein.
  • On October 8th 1962, the paper published an article: 'Bedingt abwehrbereit' (Partially prepared for defence), in which it suggested that the Bundeswehr was under-funded and ill-equipped to deal with a communist threat from the East.
  • This was an attack on Strauss' Defence Department.


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