Ocupied population and Wehrmacht

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David Thompson
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Post by David Thompson » 03 Dec 2004 21:59

Wherever the slaves or mistreated were-they certainly were not in the region I was.The only thing I did'n like was the separations implemented between the different Nationalities.I would have not minded being a Pole during that time.At least they were never called up for military duty.

Yeah, those slave laborers must have led "The Life of Riley," especially since they weren't called up for military duty to protect their foreign conquerors. Under these circumstances, the real surprise is that everyone didn't want to share their miserable, servile condition:

viewtopic.php?p=571312#571312
viewtopic.php?p=572269#572269

The Nazi slave labor program & the Ministries Case
viewtopic.php?t=62792

See also:

Decree of the Governor General of Poland, 26 October 1939, introducing compulsory labor service in occupied Poland, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. p. 943.
viewtopic.php?p=565020#565020

File note of the Reich Chancellery, 17 November 1939, concerning the use of Polish prisoners of war and civilians in agricultural production, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). United States Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. p. 944.
viewtopic.php?p=565022#565022

Extracts from the record of the fifth meeting of the General Council of the Four Year Plan, 3 January 1940, concerning statement by State Secretary Syrup on the employment and recruitment of Poles as agricultural workers in Germany, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952.
viewtopic.php?p=565024#565024

Covering letter to Council members, and extracts of statements made by State Secretary Backe at the sixth meeting of the General Council of the Four Year Plan, 14 February 1940, advising safeguarding of the next harvest, utilization of Polish workers and prisoners of war, and the probability of having to 'cause by force' the moving of necessary Polish workers to Germany", in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. pp. 949-952.
viewtopic.php?p=565036#565036

Letter from the Reich Labor Minister, Franz Seldte, to Lammers, 21 March 1940, reporting upon the general labor situation; the plan of making 800000 Poles available for German agriculture; the covering of labor requirements in the mines by utilizing foreign workers, and related matters, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. pp. 953-958.
viewtopic.php?p=565317#565317

Extracts from the report of the eighth meeting of the General Council, 17 April 1940, concerning a report by State Secretary Syrup on the labor situation and noting that forced conscription of Poles is necessary due to the failure of recruiting propaganda, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. pp. 959-961.
viewtopic.php?p=565319#565319

Extracts from a report Signed Dankwerts, 9 June 1943, reporting upon an inspection trip to Poland noting the results of labor recruitment and resettlement policies in Poland and related matters, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. pp. 1004-1006.
viewtopic.php?p=566359#566359

Letter from Pleiger to Sauckel, 5 August 1943, recommending steps to be taken with respect to Eastern workers who leave jobs in the coal mines and noting that the same letter has been sent to Himmler and Kaltenbrunner, in Trials of War Criminals Before the Nuernberg Military Tribunals Under Control Council Law No. 10. Vol. 13: United States of America v. Ernst von Weizsaecker, et al. (Case 11: 'Ministries Case'). US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1952. pp. 1027-1029.
viewtopic.php?p=566707#566707

Document 2220-PS [partial translation]" in Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression. Volume IV: US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1947. pp. 855-860.
viewtopic.php?p=566359#566359

Document 1352-PS [translation]", in Nazi Conspiracy and Agression. Volume III: US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1947. pp. 916-924.
viewtopic.php?p=571114#571114

Document 2450-PS, TRANSLATION OF DOCUMENT 2540-PS, Decree concerning Sequestration of Private Property in the Government General, in Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression, vol. V, US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1946, pp. 280-285.
viewtopic.php?p=571208#571208

Document 1352-PS, Report on the confiscations in the Bielitz District of 22 May 1940, in Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression. Volume III: US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1947. pp. 916-924.
viewtopic.php?p=574389#574389

And while we're on the subject, lets not forget the "special status" of Poles under the laws of the Reich:

Document 2746-PS, Decree concerning the Organization of Criminal Jurisdiction against Poles and Jews in the Incorporated Eastern Territories 4th December 1941, in Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression, vol. V, US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1946, pp. 386-390
viewtopic.php?p=571894#571894

Document 701-PS, Regarding: Poles and Jews who are released from the penal institutions of the Department of Justice, in Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression. Volume III: US Government Printing Office, District of Columbia: 1946. p. 510-511.
viewtopic.php?p=573016#573016

NMT judgment in the Justice Case
viewtopic.php?t=63931

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Post by magnum357 » 06 Dec 2004 06:55

Bratello,

Just point by point...

1. Numbers. I didn't say the numbers were absolutely correct. But I am saying the number of murdered civillians was bigger than the number of killed soldiers. That's a fact.

2. On "bad guys" and Soviet POWs. I think you didn't get neither the subject of the forum, nor me correctly. The question was: how it was to leave under germans' rule. I say for Russians the life was not o.k. POW subject is not for this discussion.

3. On seeing german army as the "liberator". I could have sent you to several links on local soviet population and Nazis' relationships, like those given by David Thompson, but instead I want to tell you one thing: yes, in the beginning of war some part of the population thougth germans were to free them from Stalin's rule. But this happened because they had no idea on Nazis way of dealing with non-aryans. Just lack of information. But in one year (1941) everything changed. Wehrmacht's deeds in occupied territories of USSR in 1941 were the "best advertising" for the Nazi ideology, and those who saw german army as a liberator changed their minds quickly.

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Post by bratello » 06 Dec 2004 19:13

magnum357 wrote (underlined): "Just point by point...

1. Numbers
...(I beleive there is no need to use exact numbers to prove a point if you are not sure those numbers are correct. It is mis-leading. Otherwise, you are right there were more Soviet civilians who died prematurely between 1941-45 than there were Soviet soldiers killed during this period);

2. On "bad guys" and Soviet POWs...(Point taken. You are absolutely right);

3. On seeing german army as the "liberator". (...) Just lack of information...(An understatement: This lack of information first and foremost due to the Soviet Government's ban on publicly critisizing Nazi Germany and its deeds in the occuped countries. Such ban being in force since the signing the 1939 Soviet-German Treaty);

(...) But in one year (1941) everything changed. Wehrmacht's deeds in occupied territories of USSR in 1941 were the "best advertising" for the Nazi ideology, and those who saw german army as a liberator changed their minds quickly...(A very general statement. I am not so sure about "in one year" or about "those who saw", and I'll be rather general too: Ukranians and Balts "saw", but having been under Stalin's rule even for a short while, continued serving Germans long after 1941. Even A. Vlasov's troops consisiting mostly of ethnic Russians were in Prague in 1945).

DT's comments are most welcome!

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Post by magnum357 » 07 Dec 2004 12:17

Bratello,

Actually, the exact numbers in my post come from Krivosheev's fundamental work on USSR (and Russian Empire) losses in all wars. I am sure you are familiar with this work. I should have cited the Krivosheev's work, instead I just copied and pasted the numbers, as the work was in Russian and I didn't have time to translate the text.
But I do believe (as a Sociologist familiar with statistics) that Krivosheev's work is one of the most accurate (but not absolutely correct) among all works devoted to this subject.





DT's comments are most welcome!

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Post by bratello » 07 Dec 2004 16:57

Reading some back postings (mostly on "Life in the occupied Russia"), I noticed several points which seem to call for clarification/comments. Please keep in mind that my comments are based on materials I came by in the past and as of today I am not always able to quote the source as such discussion requires, so please excuse the use of such non-exact terms as “many”, “some”, absence of exact dates, etc.:

1) Magnum357 wrote: (…) the losses of civillian population in USSR because of the occupation (starvation, diseases, murdering, etc.) made 13 million 684 thousand 692 persons (…)

Unfortunately, I am not familiar with the Krivosheev’s work. Does the number of civilian losses (be it accurate or not) includes only people actually living on the territories occupied by the Germans and their allies (i.e. Odessa under Romanians)? Does it include civilian losses in Leningrad which was never occupied? How was this number tabulated?

2) Magnum357 wrote: (…) But on the whole the german army just didn't care for "sub-humans", like we don't care about ants when we are walking toward our aim in the forest. This comes from their ideology, as we all know (…).

An ideology (no matter how inhuman) is usually a more complex set of ideas than just “did not care for”. According to Nazis all races and nations were organized into a certain hierarchy. The place for Slavs was near the bottom, but certainly above Jews and Gypsies. And that is already more complex than “just didn’t care". (A. Rosenberg had rather elaborate plans about organizing life on the Russian territory after the war. DT can probably help with sources)

3) Magnum357 wrote: (…) And one last non-statistical fact: you can never find a USSR comedy on the WW II subject. People here still remember the horror of that war (…).

There was a comedy (a movie) released in the 70s about a young soldier-girl and her sidekick, an older soldier, wrecking havoc behind enemy lines. (I saw it as a kid and I will post the name when it comes to me). The movie was a mild commercial success, but was heavily criticized in the official press for showing WW2 too lightly. The movie was definitely an exception from the official Soviet view on WW2.

What’s more important though is that, despite the fact that almost every Russian family was touched by the war, there were plenty of so-called “anekdots” (i.e. funny stories) circulating among (younger) population which in many instances were outright cynical about the Great Patriotic War. The official Party line as expressed in mass media, movies, books, commemorations, etc, was much more visible to the outside world than those “anekdots”.

4) Dora wrote: (…) Also your statement about the "need" for a Stalin at the time of the German invasion is also "right on the money". I think a lessor man, a more deliberative, more cautious man would have lost his nerve or control over the military and the government and would have been replaced and this indecision, this disruption of command at the highest levels could have spelled desaster for the new U.S.S.R (…)

Actually Stalin “lost his nerve” and panicked in October 1941 when he abruptly left Moscow, presuming it is to be lost, for Kuibyshev (former/and now Samara), returning later, in time for Nov. 7, 1941 military parade on Red Square.

5) Magnum357 wrote: (…) One is the Soviet rules for how to treat POWs and the other is German instructions on treating POWs and especially Soviet POWs. The Soviet rules are very humane, and the German instruction is absolutely not humane (…)

Worth keeping in mind that Stalin never signed the Geneva Convention, did not care if the Germans ever applied its rules to the Russian POW’s (who in his eyes were traitors anyway). His treatment of the Russian POW’s who survived German captivity was unjustly harsh.

Knowing how Soviet authorities treated its own imprisoned population, "very humane" "rules" when applied to German POW, either calls for a clarification of the words "very humane" or, if these words are used in a generally accepted sense, for specific examples of the "very humane" "rules" as applied to the German POW's. Never the less, considering the circumstances, German POW’s in Russia were treated adequately (no worth than the rest of the GULAG population) by the officials and the general population. Many died while in Russia but not at a higher rate than the GULAG's Russians, some of the Germans fathered children in Russia and in general were remembered without any hate (and sometimes fondly) by the Russians who knew them. Says a lot about Russian ability to forgive, if not to forget.
Last edited by bratello on 07 Dec 2004 21:54, edited 6 times in total.

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Post by David Thompson » 07 Dec 2004 19:13


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Post by magnum357 » 13 Dec 2004 07:15

To Bratello:

It was a surprise for me to know that you are not familiar with the work of Krivosheev. Here is the some information on this book. (by the way - this book in English is avaialble at any internet book store.)

SOVIET CASUALTIES AND COMBAT LOSSES IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY

Edited by Colonel - General G.F. Krivosheev

Translated by Christine Barnard

Foreword by Professor John Erickson

CONTENT:

This comprehensive technical reference book details Soviet casualties and losses in wars, military actions and conflicts throughout the twentieth century from the 1918 civil war to Afghanistan. The data comes from thousands of separate documents and reports from different archives, examined and compared over a number of years by an expert team of historians in Moscow, whose aim is to shed light on contradictory and often arbitrary claims about the USSR's war losses.

Details are given for four main periods. The first gives Red Army losses from 1918 to 1922, during and after the civil war. The second covers Red Army losses in the period between the two world wars, occurring in the Sino - Soviet conflict of 1929, in the Soviet–Japanese conflict of 1938 - 39, in the war with Finland in 1939–40, and in other incidents. The third and largest section of the book presents Soviet losses in the Great Patriotic War, 1941 - 45, giving figures by campaign and strategic operation, in different arms of the service, for officer casualties, for prisoners of war and those missing in action, for the production and loss of arms and equipment, and so on. The last part presents Soviet losses after World War II, such as those in Korea in 1950 - 53, Hungary in 1956, Czechoslovakia in 1968 and Afghanistan up to 1989.

This invaluable reference book has been translated from the Russian original and is now available to western scholars in English for the first time.

KEY POINTS:

• Detailed figures for Soviet casualties and losses

• Accurate data on the subject available in English for the first time

• Based on thousands of documents examined by experts in Moscow

• Placed in context in the Foreword by Professor John Erickson

REVIEWS:

'...Greenhill Books have done a great service by making this monumentally detailed and indispensable work available in English. ... The 111 detailed tables are a source of endless fascination and stimulus for further enquiry.' - Christopher Bellamy, Journal of The Royal United Services Institute.

'...Greenhill Books are to be congratulated for publishing what must be a unique history of all the losses of the Soviet armed forces from 1917 to 1989. It is a real gem for all military historians and students of modern warfare.' - The Information Digest of The Society for Co - operation in Russian and Soviet Studies.

'...This is a book that belongs in every serious research library.' - Rob Cowley, Editor MHQ.

'A remarkable volume ... for specific operations the information is convincing and of unparalleled details ... the value of this book is immense.' - Simon Trew in The Wish Stream: The Journal of the War Studies Department, Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst

'One of the most valuable books to have appeared on the history of the Soviet Union. An extraordinary mass of hitherto unavailable statistics culled from the archives of the former Soviet Union. ... The book also includes analyses of strength figures at various periods, which have themselves been quite elusive. An indispensable reference for anyone with a serious interest in the history of the twentieth century.' - The Newsletter of the NYMAS (USA) reviewing Soviet Casualties and Combat Losses in the Twentieth Century, Edited by G. F. Krivosheev.

'An excellent and detailed reference book ... this very detailed reference work lists the Soviet military casualties and losses in each of the Soviet Union's major wars and minor involvements ... this is a very significant work and a worthwhile book in the library of any reader of military history, particularly those interested in World War II.' - Command (USA) reviewing Soviet Casualties and Combat Losses in the Twentieth Century

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Post by magnum357 » 13 Dec 2004 13:22

To Bratello:

I thought it was necessary to reply to the points of your message that refer to me.

1. Does the number of civilian losses (be it accurate or not) includes only people actually living on the territories occupied by the Germans and their allies (i.e. Odessa under Romanians)? Does it include civilian losses in Leningrad which was never occupied? How was this number tabulated?

Answer: pls read my previous post. The book by Krivosheev is considered to be the most detailed and accurate even by some of his opponents. I think it would be a useful reading for anyone who is interested in WW II history.

2) An ideology (no matter how inhuman) is usually a more complex set of ideas than just “did not care for”. According to Nazis all races and nations were organized into a certain hierarchy. The place for Slavs was near the bottom, but certainly above Jews and Gypsies. And that is already more complex than “just didn’t care". (A. Rosenberg had rather elaborate plans about organizing life on the Russian territory after the war. DT can probably help with sources)

Answer: sorry, but you have an insteresting skill of interpreting your opponent's words wrong. Of course the Nazi ideology was more complex than "no care". But what I meant was just ONE OF THE CONSEQUENCES of the Nazi ideology.
Slavs above jews? To survive to become a slave, because the Third reich needed working force? Rosenberg's "plans"? I can't understand your logic - what exactly you wanted to say by these words?


3) There was a comedy (a movie) released in the 70s about a young soldier-girl and her sidekick, an older soldier, wrecking havoc behind enemy lines. (I saw it as a kid and I will post the name when it comes to me). The movie was a mild commercial success, but was heavily criticized in the official press for showing WW2 too lightly. The movie was definitely an exception from the official Soviet view on WW2.
What’s more important though is that, despite the fact that almost every Russian family was touched by the war, there were plenty of so-called “anekdots” (i.e. funny stories) circulating among (younger) population which in many instances were outright cynical about the Great Patriotic War. The official Party line as expressed in mass media, movies, books, commemorations, etc, was much more visible to the outside world than those “anekdots”.

Answer: I really don't remeber that movie, even though I always loved to watch war movies. Are you sure it was Soviet? There was one famous WW II comedy (I've seen it when I was a child in early 1980s), but it was French, translated into Russian (La Grande Vadrouille). I don't remember any other comedies.
Yes, there are plenty of "anekdots", but they are told at a certain time and sertain situations. A believer will not tell jokes about God in the church, and "USSR" person will not tell war jokes in the war memorial.

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Post by magnum357 » 13 Dec 2004 14:23

And one more message to Bratello:

It's really hard for me to comment on so many points, Bratello (have to use work computer and work time), and I do believe that the best and only way to fruitfully discuss any subject is to concentrate on ONE specific question. For example - the subject "Life in the Third Reich and the occupied territories" is so vast that we are doomed to right huge novels to each other any time we want to participate in discussion.
Why don't we (you and me) choose, for example, just discussing the attitude of Wehrmacht soldiers toward slavs, leaving aside the question of POWs?
Then, we should decide, whether we agree on some principal subjects or not, and define our contradiction (if there is any) cartefully.

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Post by bratello » 15 Dec 2004 03:59

Magnum,

re: Krivosheev’s book.
Thank you for the reference. I will look up the info.

re: Nazi ideology in regards to the “sub-human”.
Nazi ideas in regards to Jews can be put in one word: extermination. However, it did not prevent Hannah Arendt from writing in a book called “Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil”.

Saying “…the german army just didn't care for "sub-humans", like we don't care about ants when we are walking toward our aim in the forest” simplifies the issue which judging by 11 links to the documents regarding organizing life on the occupied Eastern territories provided by DT this issue is anything but.

Magnum wrote: “But what I meant was…”. I only comment on what is written not meant.

re: Movie.
No reason to doubt my words. If I recall correctly, the movie's title: "Katen'ka-Katyusha".

re: “Anekdots”.
Magnum wrote (underlining mine): “Yes, there are plenty of "anekdots", but they are told at a certain time and sertain situations. A believer will not tell jokes about God in the church, and "USSR" person will not tell war jokes in the war memorial.

My comments only state the existence of such “anekdots” without specifying circumstances under which such “anekdots” are told.

re: POWs
Magnum wrote (underlining mine): “Why don't we (you and me) choose, for example, just discussing the attitude of Wehrmacht soldiers toward slavs, leaving aside the question of POWs”

The original statement about “very humane” “rule” applied to German POWs was not mine. Mine were comments to it.

Regards.

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Post by Obserwator » 15 Dec 2004 17:04

Why don't we (you and me) choose, for example, just discussing the attitude of Wehrmacht soldiers toward slavs, leaving aside the question of POWs?

In case of Poles the usuall atittude was that of that of racial hatred for the Poles, and mass murders was experienced during the September Campaign-German Wehrmacht soldiers murdered on their own(without any orders) up to 20.000 civilians in just two months.
Many Wehrmacht soldiers were indoctrinated by Nazi ideology and it showed in their harsh treatment of population.Poles and Germans were to set apart, rapings weren't common because Poles were seen as inferior dirty race,beatings, insults,murder, robbery were on the other hand widespread and institutionalized by orders of Hans Frank.
Also-kidnapping of children on mass scale (to search for Aryan traces), elimination of Polish elites as part of the plan to exterminate the majority of Polish people and turn the rest into slave race, expulsions, deliberate starvation of the population, razing of cities, orders forbiding education, culture activities, deportations of slave workers to Reich, and to concentration camps.
viewtopic.php?t=52090&
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jso ... rank1.html

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Post by G. Trifkovic » 15 Dec 2004 20:34

Sorry to interupt your discussion,but I just remembered the story my father once told me:
It was begining of 1945,and Army group "E" was retreating from the Balkans.One of the vital transportation hubs was Sarajevo.Those who still remember those days,say they were the darkest during the whole occupation.Poglavnik sent one of his most trusted subbordinates,Maks Luburic (former commander of Jasenovac concentration/death camp) to steel the backs of NDH units in that part of the country.He was known to be a sadistic maniac and soon he and his thugs were at work.People were taken from their homes and dissapeared.Those happy enough were shot. Wave of terror engulfed the city.One day,my father's aunt heard the knocking.She was terrified,not knowing what'll happen when she opens the door.When she opened,she had something to see-young,impeccably dressed german officer.His manners were impeccable as well and he spoke some croatian.He asked her,in most polite manner,that he needed accomodation for his men for the night.He said that he would provide all the necessities and that he guaranteed for the conduct of his men.Aunt accepted,of course-what else could she do?The way he behaved must have looked strange,to say at least,in those days...

Cheers,

Gaius

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Post by bratello » 16 Dec 2004 12:02

magnum357 wrote:Why don't we (you and me) choose, for example, just discussing the attitude of Wehrmacht soldiers toward slavs, leaving aside the question of POWs?
Then, we should decide, whether we agree on some principal subjects or not, and define our contradiction (if there is any) cartefully.


There is hardly a possibility of disagreement on the subject: a) the "official attitude" of Wehrmacht soldiers towards Slavs as prescribed by the Nazi leadership or by Wehrmacht HQ can be found in many documents (see links by DT) and as such can not be disputed; b) there are plenty of documents regarding the implementation of such "attitude" which are impossible to contest and c) there always were and always will be exceptions to the rule--not everyone can be brainwashed into becoming a soulless beast. Stories illustrating such exceptions are sometimes documented but mostly anecdotical (see the previous posting) and as such are not to be discussed, but simply to be believed or not.

Regards.

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Re: Ocupied population and Wehrmacht

Post by tigre » 07 Dec 2014 17:44

Hello to all :D; photographs showing the relationship between the forces of invasion / occupation and the inhabitants during the various stages of the war ....................

The Wehrmacht and civilians.

Source: http://www.odkrywca.pl/wrzesien-1939-zd ... tml#578396

Cheers. Raúl M 8).
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Re: Ocupied population and Wehrmacht

Post by wm » 07 Dec 2014 22:52

Although they show nothing. There is nothing wrong with the shown behavior.
Giving some help to enemy soldiers is perfectly legal (excluding totalitarian countries), those soldiers were not monsters but people like them.
Furnishings information about their own army is not. It's even forbidden to force civilians to do so.
German civilians were giving "some help" to Russian soldiers in the same way in 1945.

Those children waving to the German soldiers for the heck of it - because that was something cool that happened among the usual rural boredom, with the same enthusiasm would have later shot at them for the same heck of it.

And - people living in the rural areas have to be careful not to antagonize an invading soldiers, and always were - because they were totally on their own, without even the protection that numbers give in towns/cities.

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