German Antinazis

Discussions on the Allies and the Neutral States in general and the countries that does not have sections of their own.
User avatar
Sheldrake
Member
Posts: 3678
Joined: 28 Apr 2013 17:14
Location: London

Re: German Antinazis

Post by Sheldrake » 02 Feb 2024 11:55

ImageLet me recommend The King's Most Loyal Enemy Aliens: Germans Who Fought for Britain in the Second World War Hardcover – 7 July 2007
by Helen Fry https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kings-Most-Loy ... y%20aliens.

One of Churchill's acts as prime Minister was to lock up all "enemy aliens" out of fear of fifth columnists. However, over time men of military age were permitted to join the Pioneer Corps in unarmed roles and eventually volunteer to serve in combat arms.

Some escaped internment. Klaus Hugo Adam, born in 1921 to an assimilated German Jewish family in Berlin, (owers of the sport store S Adam) joined the RAF and flew Typhoon fighter bombers in 1943-45 in 609 Sqn as Ken Adam.

Quite a few "enemy Aliens" were recruited into intellicence services for tactical radio interception
  • Sydney Goldburg, was born and raised in Leipzig, but held a Polish passport. He served in the Y service - radio interception and was on a fighter direction ship off Normandy on D Day.

    Horst Adolf Herzberg born in Berlin in 1991 served in the RN on HMS Bellona as Writer EWilliam Ashley Howard intercepting and translating traffic from German ships at sea.
Many of these men were highly motivated to fight Hitler's Germany, There were enough to form an entire unit in the Army Commandos - No3 Troop of X Inter-allied Commando. These did not carry out inglorious barsterds style revenge missions but provided groups across the commandos as interrogators. Some served in the Special Forces- one Sudetend German member of the Small Scale Raiding Force is buried in St Laurent Sur Mer behind Omaha Beach.
Image
42 year old WW1 veteran of the KuK Richard Lehniger was perhaps too old to be messing about in boats, but the inscription [on his grave suggests his motivation - its the last line of the original version of the Internationale, the Communist anthem.

By 1943 it was obvious that the internned Germans were not a bunch of Fifth Columnists and many joined the services.
Leo Horn (Leo Schwarz) from Berlon served in 5th Bn Wiltshires from June 1944 to the end of the war.
Ernest Goodman (Ernst Guttmann) served in 5th Battalion Coldstream Guards in the Guards Armoured Division,
Several became Sassenach Scots...
Guy Bishop (Günter Gustav Brüg,served in 7th Battalion the Black Watch 1944-45
Viennese Jew Likwornik born 1924 served in 1st Bn Gordon Highlanders from June 1944-the end of the war.
Ronald Walters (Rudolf Walter, born in Breslau) another kinder transport refugee served in 7th Bn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders

1RTR and 8 Hussars seem to have received quite a few Austrian and German reinforcements to bring their units up to mstrength prior to D Day.
Source- Fry, Helen. The King's Most Loyal Enemy Aliens: Germans Who Fought for Britain in the Second World War (p. 211). The History Press. Kindle Edition.

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 02 Feb 2024 21:07

Sheldrake wrote:
02 Feb 2024 11:55
ImageLet me recommend The King's Most Loyal Enemy Aliens: Germans Who Fought for Britain in the Second World War Hardcover – 7 July 2007
by Helen Fry https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kings-Most-Loy ... y%20aliens.

One of Churchill's acts as prime Minister was to lock up all "enemy aliens" out of fear of fifth columnists. However, over time men of military age were permitted to join the Pioneer Corps in unarmed roles and eventually volunteer to serve in combat arms.

Some escaped internment. Klaus Hugo Adam, born in 1921 to an assimilated German Jewish family in Berlin, (owers of the sport store S Adam) joined the RAF and flew Typhoon fighter bombers in 1943-45 in 609 Sqn as Ken Adam.

Quite a few "enemy Aliens" were recruited into intellicence services for tactical radio interception
  • Sydney Goldburg, was born and raised in Leipzig, but held a Polish passport. He served in the Y service - radio interception and was on a fighter direction ship off Normandy on D Day.

    Horst Adolf Herzberg born in Berlin in 1991 served in the RN on HMS Bellona as Writer EWilliam Ashley Howard intercepting and translating traffic from German ships at sea.
Many of these men were highly motivated to fight Hitler's Germany, There were enough to form an entire unit in the Army Commandos - No3 Troop of X Inter-allied Commando. These did not carry out inglorious barsterds style revenge missions but provided groups across the commandos as interrogators. Some served in the Special Forces- one Sudetend German member of the Small Scale Raiding Force is buried in St Laurent Sur Mer behind Omaha Beach.
Image
42 year old WW1 veteran of the KuK Richard Lehniger was perhaps too old to be messing about in boats, but the inscription [on his grave suggests his motivation - its the last line of the original version of the Internationale, the Communist anthem.

By 1943 it was obvious that the internned Germans were not a bunch of Fifth Columnists and many joined the services.
Leo Horn (Leo Schwarz) from Berlon served in 5th Bn Wiltshires from June 1944 to the end of the war.
Ernest Goodman (Ernst Guttmann) served in 5th Battalion Coldstream Guards in the Guards Armoured Division,
Several became Sassenach Scots...
Guy Bishop (Günter Gustav Brüg,served in 7th Battalion the Black Watch 1944-45
Viennese Jew Likwornik born 1924 served in 1st Bn Gordon Highlanders from June 1944-the end of the war.
Ronald Walters (Rudolf Walter, born in Breslau) another kinder transport refugee served in 7th Bn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders

1RTR and 8 Hussars seem to have received quite a few Austrian and German reinforcements to bring their units up to mstrength prior to D Day.
Source- Fry, Helen. The King's Most Loyal Enemy Aliens: Germans Who Fought for Britain in the Second World War (p. 211). The History Press. Kindle Edition.
Seconded. Having agree, it seems the expressed wishes of such individuals was to serve their adopted count(ries) in uniform, and a such (including the US, Canada, etc.), however; the history of the US Army's 101st Infantry Battalion, along with those men who served in the British Army, is also illustrative.

However, one wonders if a "wider" appeal, to "Germans" to serve as such, would have borne fruit.

Obviously, there would be tremendous issues of legality and likely reprisals against both POWs, internees, and family members in occupied Europe, but there were some quite clearly anti-fascist Germans who were at large outside of occupied Europe who do not appear to have served the Allies ... the obvious example is Arnold Friedrich Vieth von Golßenau, but presumably there were others, and given the willingness of both the Poles and French to enlist (and commission, in the case of the FFL, certainly) emigres of various backgrounds in wartime and otherwise, it would be interesting to consider if such ideas were ever seriously considered by the Western Allies.

User avatar
Sheldrake
Member
Posts: 3678
Joined: 28 Apr 2013 17:14
Location: London

Re: German Antinazis

Post by Sheldrake » 03 Feb 2024 00:04

daveshoup2MarDiv wrote:
02 Feb 2024 21:07
Seconded. Having agree, it seems the expressed wishes of such individuals was to serve their adopted count(ries) in uniform, and a such (including the US, Canada, etc.), however; the history of the US Army's 101st Infantry Battalion, along with those men who served in the British Army, is also illustrative.

However, one wonders if a "wider" appeal, to "Germans" to serve as such, would have borne fruit.

Obviously, there would be tremendous issues of legality and likely reprisals against both POWs, internees, and family members in occupied Europe, but there were some quite clearly anti-fascist Germans who were at large outside of occupied Europe who do not appear to have served the Allies ... the obvious example is Arnold Friedrich Vieth von Golßenau, but presumably there were others, and given the willingness of both the Poles and French to enlist (and commission, in the case of the FFL, certainly) emigres of various backgrounds in wartime and otherwise, it would be interesting to consider if such ideas were ever seriously considered by the Western Allies.
The British did think about the German Resistance but decided that there was no organised opposition to Hitler. The people who joined the British Forces were largely people that the Nazi regime decided were enemies - Jews and Communists.

There was no point in organising a Free German Army as there was no political entity recognised by the British, and no German political figures in exile around which to rally an opposition. The Soviets organised a Free German Army because they had some ideas about how the regime they wanted to install in the Germany they occupied.

Who were 101st Infantry battalion?

User avatar
wm
Member
Posts: 8747
Joined: 29 Dec 2006 20:11
Location: Poland

Re: German Antinazis

Post by wm » 03 Feb 2024 00:20

Although the Poles and French fought for their own countries and were protected by the Hague Conventions but, the Germans would fight against their own country (so basically would be traitors) and wouldn't be protected (unless they officially had renounced their citizenship).

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 03 Feb 2024 01:00

Sheldrake wrote:
03 Feb 2024 00:04
daveshoup2MarDiv wrote:
02 Feb 2024 21:07
Seconded. Having agree, it seems the expressed wishes of such individuals was to serve their adopted count(ries) in uniform, and a such (including the US, Canada, etc.), however; the history of the US Army's 101st Infantry Battalion, along with those men who served in the British Army, is also illustrative.

However, one wonders if a "wider" appeal, to "Germans" to serve as such, would have borne fruit.

Obviously, there would be tremendous issues of legality and likely reprisals against both POWs, internees, and family members in occupied Europe, but there were some quite clearly anti-fascist Germans who were at large outside of occupied Europe who do not appear to have served the Allies ... the obvious example is Arnold Friedrich Vieth von Golßenau, but presumably there were others, and given the willingness of both the Poles and French to enlist (and commission, in the case of the FFL, certainly) emigres of various backgrounds in wartime and otherwise, it would be interesting to consider if such ideas were ever seriously considered by the Western Allies.
The British did think about the German Resistance but decided that there was no organised opposition to Hitler. The people who joined the British Forces were largely people that the Nazi regime decided were enemies - Jews and Communists.

There was no point in organising a Free German Army as there was no political entity recognised by the British, and no German political figures in exile around which to rally an opposition. The Soviets organised a Free German Army because they had some ideas about how the regime they wanted to install in the Germany they occupied.

Who were 101st Infantry battalion?
Understood; the point re von Golßenau is as an example of a German - with a pretty respectable military record - who was a) at large in the West before 1939 and b) did not sign up for the SOE or X Troop/10 Commando, or the OSS or US Army CIC, etc.

One wonders how many more there were, and if there was any study of their potential by the British, Americans, or French (given the record of the RMVEs in 1914-18 and 1939-40, and Free France's need for manpower, seems like something they would have considered.

The 101st Infantry battalion was an effort by the US Army to set up a unit for refugees, emigres, and Americans of Austrian (and to a degree, German) ancestry, with an eye to using their linguistic abilities and knowledge in the appropriate theaters - not unlike (for example) the 99th and 122nd battalions, which were similar units for Americans of Norwegian and Greek ancestry, respectively.

The issue is that most Americans of Austrian or German ancestry (some of who were initially identified as such by birthplace, which meant a fair number of individuals who saw themselves as Americans of Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Italian, or Yugoslav ancestry, got caught up in it, and said, "no, not me"), or even emigres/refugees, would rather serve in "regular" US Army units, and so they did; likewise, those were really capable linguistically generally got moved into intelligence, counter-intelligence, military government, and the like. Some of the members of the 101st Battalion, with appropriate skills, transferred into the 10th Mountain Division, as well.

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 03 Feb 2024 01:02

wm wrote:
03 Feb 2024 00:20
Although the Poles and French fought for their own countries and were protected by the Hague Conventions but, the Germans would fight against their own country (so basically would be traitors) and wouldn't be protected (unless they officially had renounced their citizenship).
Sure, although given the circumstances of the Czech government in exile in 1939-45, presumably something creative could have been done under an Allied-sponsored "Austrian" banner ... or (if one really wanted to get creative) a "Hanoverian" banner sponsored by the British. ;)

User avatar
Sheldrake
Member
Posts: 3678
Joined: 28 Apr 2013 17:14
Location: London

Re: German Antinazis

Post by Sheldrake » 03 Feb 2024 13:03

daveshoup2MarDiv wrote:
03 Feb 2024 01:00
Understood; the point re von Golßenau is as an example of a German - with a pretty respectable military record - who was a) at large in the West before 1939 and b) did not sign up for the SOE or X Troop/10 Commando, or the OSS or US Army CIC, etc.

One wonders how many more there were, and if there was any study of their potential by the British, Americans, or French (given the record of the RMVEs in 1914-18 and 1939-40, and Free France's need for manpower, seems like something they would have considered.
I can't find the reference, but my6 recollection is that the British government disregarded the German resistance and political opposition to Hitler as too disorganised.

There are some references in Hansard, the record of the Houses of Parliament. There was a debate about refugees in the House of Commons on 10 July 1940 The undersecretary of state for War Mr E Grigg War said.
"I will only say a word about the suggestion that we should enlist aliens in a foreign legion. The War Office has no objection whatever to the idea in principle, but I beg hon. Members to remember that we are striving to arm our own Army. There is a certain amount of equipment to spare, and we want our own people to have it first. Some exceptions have been made. Rifles have been given to some foreign corps, but, on the whole, what is available at present must go to our own troops."

June 1941
Commander King-Hall MP
asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether he will give favourable consideration to the creation of the status of Free German, such status only to be available to German citizens who can satisfy His Majesty's Government that they were actively hostile to the Nazi regime previous to 3rd September, 1939?

Mr. Eden (Foregin Secretary)
The position of those Germans who are hostile to the Nazi regime has frequently been considered, but I do not regard the creation of a special status of Free Germans as either practicable or advantageous.

This debate on 10m March 1942 gives a glimpse of some of the domestic politics behind the decision not to create a "free Germany" in exile. Lord Elibank was a soldier and liberal politician who had spent some of his childhood in Dresden
https://hansard.parliament.uk/Lords/194 ... 19b00af8ba


More here in the National Archive web page on the SS Andorra Star.https://blog.nationalarchives.gov.uk/co ... world-war/

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 03 Feb 2024 18:46

Appreciate the links; the discussion from Hansard is interesting (especially Faringdon pointing out the pre-war accommodationist positions of some of his colleagues), but since it deals entirely with BBC staffing, not sure how much it really speaks to whether - for example - a RMVE equivalent led by someone like von Golßenau, who was both an experienced field grade infantry officer and had a proven anti-fascist record, was ever considered. Granted, he was a gay Communist, apparently, but the British tended to employ some fairly "ungentlemanly" types during WW II. ;)

The numbers in the Arandora Star piece are interesting; given the numbers of Class C (some 66,000 'no threat" personnel), even with the appropriate set asides for women, children, and the aged among the emigres, seems like a battalion to brigade-sized force could have been organized. Even if the mobilizable percentage of the 66,000 was only 10%, that's 6,600 men, with (presumably) military experience in WW I for at least those in their late 30s and 40s...

ljadw
Member
Posts: 15472
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: German Antinazis

Post by ljadw » 16 Feb 2024 12:31

A German anti-Nazi Legion fighting on allied side was out of the question as
1 it could imply the creation of a German government in exile
2 the Allies did not fight against the Nazis, but against the Germans
There were no good Germans in WW2 .

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 16 Feb 2024 23:41

ljadw wrote:
16 Feb 2024 12:31
A German anti-Nazi Legion fighting on allied side was out of the question as
1 it could imply the creation of a German government in exile
2 the Allies did not fight against the Nazis, but against the Germans
There were no good Germans in WW2 .
Was it, though?

1. The French and Poles, historically, welcomed emigres into their respective services, both historically and during WW I and WW II; and where there was not a "government in exile" of any standing. Haller's Blue Army, for example, in WW I. The LE existed, and in both world wars, the French raised RMVEs as part of the Legion. The US Army's 101st Battalion, although ostensibly "Austrian" as opposed to "German" is another example.
2. The Allies fought against the Axis, but also welcomed emigres for the linguistic abilities, special knowledge of the enemy, and dedication; don't see how a "line" unit for Germans is all that alien to the historical reality.
3. Arnold Friedrich Vieth von Golßenau would seem to have existed, however. Presumably there were others.

ljadw
Member
Posts: 15472
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: German Antinazis

Post by ljadw » 17 Feb 2024 07:38

Haller's Blue Army ( in WW1 !, not in WW2 ) was a Polish military contingent ,not a German one .
WW2 was an ideological war, especially in the US ,and no distinction was made between Germans and Nazis .Eisenhower said : in Germany there will be no fraternization.We will come in as conquerors .
Emigrés were people who had left Germany BEFORE the war ,most had no longer the German nationality and most émigrés in Britain were put in prison in June 1940 .
It was a war against Germany :the use of Kissinger and Golsenau do not prove the opposite .Kissinger had left Germany in 1938 and was an American, Golsenau was a communist .

daveshoup2MarDiv
Member
Posts: 639
Joined: 07 Aug 2023 02:55
Location: Hawaii

Re: German Antinazis

Post by daveshoup2MarDiv » 17 Feb 2024 08:37

ljadw wrote:
17 Feb 2024 07:38
Haller's Blue Army ( in WW1 !, not in WW2 ) was a Polish military contingent ,not a German one .
WW2 was an ideological war, especially in the US ,and no distinction was made between Germans and Nazis .Eisenhower said : in Germany there will be no fraternization.We will come in as conquerors .
Emigrés were people who had left Germany BEFORE the war ,most had no longer the German nationality and most émigrés in Britain were put in prison in June 1940 .
It was a war against Germany :the use of Kissinger and Golsenau do not prove the opposite .Kissinger had left Germany in 1938 and was an American, Golsenau was a communist .
1. Yeah, understood, but the point is the French created an avowedly "Polish" army in WW I when there was not a Polish state or government-in-exile, which belies your earlier statement "it could imply the creation of a German government in exile."
2. Statements notwithstanding, "non-fraternization" policies went by the wayside as soon as the realities of the Allied occupations/liberations of French North Africa, Italy, and Germany became a reality; indeed, the Allied Military Government organizations depended upon using formerly "enemy" civil servants and related organizations in all three; see: https://history.army.mil/html/books/011 ... b_11-3.pdf
3. Golsenau was a communist. True. So were Stalin, Georgy Zhukov, Luigi Longo, and Henri Tanguy. So what?

ljadw
Member
Posts: 15472
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: German Antinazis

Post by ljadw » 17 Feb 2024 11:31

About Poland :
there was already in 1916 a Regency council in Poland, depending on the Central Powers and in 1917 there was a National Polish Committee working with the allies in Switzerland with Roman Dmowski as president . The Haller Army was formed in November 1917, the National Committee a few months before . The existence of an army implies the existence of a government and the opposite .That's why there was no German government in exile or no German military contingent ,also not an Italian one or a Japanese one . The existence of the Vlassov army had as result the creation of a Russian National Committee .
There were no German officers fighting as German officers together with the Allies .
.

User avatar
Loïc
Member
Posts: 1221
Joined: 14 Jun 2003 03:38
Location: Riom Auvergne & Bourbonnais France

Re: German Antinazis

Post by Loïc » 17 Feb 2024 12:49

One thing is to allow foreign volunteers, including germans, in the French ranks, another to accept until a separate distinct german national unit/legion
it was not at all question of that for the French other than civilian manpower in austro-german labour workers companies
Statements notwithstanding, "non-fraternization" policies went by the wayside as soon as the realities of the Allied occupations/liberations of French North Africa, Italy, and Germany became a reality; indeed, the Allied Military Government organizations depended upon using formerly "enemy" civil servants and related organizations in all three; see
But you are totally mixing totally several differents military and dipomatical status of three territorial entities that have nothing to do with each other, first French North Africa was not "ennemy" nor there were "ennemies" in such territory, that is the usual way from angloamerican view to simplify in order to rewrite and justify in a favorable meaning the angloamerican operations each time they opened the fire against French thoughout WWII, second Italy despite a true former ennemy Axis power and ally of Germany is another very particular situation of co-belligerency generously allowed by the Angloamericans far from the one destined to Germany for sure, in some cases the angloamericans favorised even more the Italian armed forces/former ennemies than the French armed forces - who participated at that time in the Liberation of Italy - e.g. they were opposed that the french ships seized by the Italian occupiers can be recovered by the French authorities, until helping much more the Italian Navy and Air Forces than the French ones, unbalancing the balance of power between both fleets and air forces without qualms
third from a French perspective given it is question of that and not the US/UK policies, Germany and Italy and so their nationals didn't cease to be at war with France, I recall that both were occupiers ennemies of France and didn't cease to be that from september 1939/june 1940 to may 1945 to not say 1947,
in French North Africa the Italians, and obviously Germans, didn't cease to be considered as ennemies POW's by the French - contrary to both angloamericans who accepted an armistice with Italy not at all recognized by French Greek and Yugoslav authorities - something usually ignored and neglected by the angloamericans members in the forum from their angloamerican prismus only - the first released them and recruited them in the cobelligerents forces - while they remained in POW's ennemies camps for the seconds
exceptions concern Austria and may 1945 when one Austrian Battalion was raised by France in may 1945 in my own city, there were a Saarland and Rhineland Battalions at the same time, it existed also 5 Austrian Battalions raised by Jugoslavs

Poland was a multisecular ally of France, there is no historical diplomatical comparison with Germany since 1871, that is like night and day, the germans were forbidden to enlist in the foreign legion after 1871 while there were already exiled polish legions even before the creation of the Great Duchy of Warsaw in 1807 or any govt in exile at that time
the Hanoverian Legion (State annexed by Prussia in 1866) of 1870-1871 was to sent to Algeria to avoid it to suffer the same fate than in 1846-1848 the San Patricio Battalion of the Mexican Army of the US-Mexican War, and why many german legionaries were sent to Indochina in the 5e REI facing only Japanese while others in North Africa joined the German Army's Infanterie-Regiment Afrika 361

comparaison n'est pas raison

while the US Army had their own italian logistical companies in southern France, even the Italians partisans crossing the french-italian border as far as 1944-1945 or Italian soldiers having participated in the Liberation of Corsica and Midi were very hardly considered as allied by French authorities, initially it was question to give them only the choice between disarmament internment or join individually the foreign legion,
so imagine a german unit after all that...

ljadw
Member
Posts: 15472
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 17:50

Re: German Antinazis

Post by ljadw » 17 Feb 2024 18:27

Golsenau ,who was 50,when the war started, did NOT fight against Germany: he remained in Mexico as head of the Communist Freies Deutschland committee .

Return to “The Allies and the Neutral States in general”