Foreign Volunteers during the Battle of Berlin, 1945

Discussions on the foreigners (volunteers as well as conscripts) fighting in the German Wehrmacht, those collaborating with the Axis and other period Far Right organizations. Hosted by George Lepre.
Panzermahn
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Post by Panzermahn » 16 Mar 2005 06:29

Allen Milcic wrote:
Panzermahn wrote:By the way, the flak unit of the Domobranstvo, is it Slovenian or Croatian? The name sounds familiar..


Hi Panzermahn:

The NDH was the acronym of the Independent State of Croatia (Nezavisna Drzava Hrvatska), so the flak unit was obviously of the Croatian Domobranstvo (regular armed forces). Slovenia did not have a state during WW2, and could not have had an embassy in Berlin.

Allen/


So, we had Croatians fighting during the Battle of Berlin. What was their fate?

Thanks for the info

Mikedc
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Post by Mikedc » 16 Mar 2005 12:15

Who can tell me more about the following Latvian officers, I believe they all served with the Waffen-SS.

Eduards Stauers
Voldemars Laivins
V. Baumans
Rutkis
E. Zalums
R. Kilevics
Rubjas
Titmanis
Liepniks


Any information about these men is welcome, couldn't find anything myself on this forum or on the internet about them.
Greetings,
Mikedc

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VJK
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Post by VJK » 16 Mar 2005 15:51

Hi!

As regards the number of Latvians fighting in Berlin, today I met one of those men, a member of the 15. Fus. Btl. and he said that there were about 240 Latvians in Berlin.

Mike - I'll see what I can find out about the Latvian officers you mention and get back to you.

Regards,

VJK

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Annelie
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Post by Annelie » 16 Mar 2005 16:11

VJK

Latvians fighting in Berlin, today I met one of those men, a member of the 15. Fus. Btl. and he said that there were about 240 Latvians in Berlin.


Interesting since it is widely thought that there were 80 Latvians?

I am supposing that the Latvian Veteran you met with survived the Russian POW camp?
Would be interesting to know if he knew of how many other Latvians survived?

Mfg
Annelie

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VJK
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Post by VJK » 16 Mar 2005 16:30

Hi Annelie!

The 80 men that is so often referred to is what was left of the Batallion by the time it had fought its way through to the Unter den Linden. There had been many casualties and others had simply got detached or wandered away. My friend reckons that about 100 survived. You are correct that my friend went through and survived the Russian POW system.

Regards,

VJK

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Annelie
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Post by Annelie » 16 Mar 2005 16:43

VJK

My friend reckons that about 100 survived



I am interested in the 100 that survived. Would like to know if these
Veterans are accounted for somewhere?

Annelie

Mikedc
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Post by Mikedc » 16 Mar 2005 16:58

VJK wrote:
Mike - I'll see what I can find out about the Latvian officers you mention and get back to you.


Hello VJK,
Thank you very much, like always it's much appreciated. Would be real nice indeed if you could find
out a bit more about these officers. And if you find some more Latvian officers who fought in the
defense of Berlin, just let us know. I'm for sure not the only one who's interested in this.

Greetings,
Mike

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VJK
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Post by VJK » 16 Mar 2005 18:34

Hi Mike!

Not too much to tell, I'm afraid.

Stubaf. Valdemars Kristaps Baumanis:- b. 19.04.1905 in Liepaja (Libau). Entered Legion - August 1943 as Ostuf., kdr., 15. Div. Stabskomp. Later appointed Div. Ordonanz Offizier (O2). June 1944:- 15. Div. Supply Commander; March 1945: kdr. Versorgungs Reg. Holder of EKII; KVK I & II.

Ustuf Stauers:- II Zugführer, 1. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.
Zugführer, 2. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.
kdr. 2. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Oschaf Laivins:- Zugfuhrer, 2. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Ustuf Rutkis:- 3. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Ustuf Zalums:- Btl. Stab

Ustuf Titmanis - Zugführer, 2. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Ustuf Liepnieks:- Zugführer, 1. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Hstuf. Rubis:- 4. Komp., I Btl., 33. Gren. Reg.
kdr. I/33. Gren. Reg.

Other officers:-

Oschaf. Antons - Btl. Adjutant
Oschaf. Melderis - Zugführer, 1. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.
Oschaf. Sils - Zugführer, 1. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.
Oschaf. Krumins - Zugführer, 3. Komp., 15. Fus. Btl.

Regards,

VJK

Mikedc
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Post by Mikedc » 16 Mar 2005 19:18

Hello VJK,

Indeed, not that much. But hey, it's something and that's always better then totally nothing.
So again you get my total appreciation, nicely done.


And if you ever should find more, well, for sure you'll tell us I suppose.


Best regards,
Mike

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Allen Milcic
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Post by Allen Milcic » 16 Mar 2005 19:28

Panzermahn wrote:So, we had Croatians fighting during the Battle of Berlin. What was their fate?

Thanks for the info


Hi Panzermahn:

The Croatian (NDH) Military Attache in Berlin was General Milan Desovic, and he held this post from 1943. His deputy, in charge of weapons procurement for the Croatian state, was General Djuro Dragicevic. The embassy building was protected by a security detachment consisting of Poglavnik Bodyguard Division (Ustasa) and regular Army (Domobranstvo) soldiers, as well a Flak unit of the Croatian Airforce (as of November 1944 the Ustasa forces and the regular forces were amalgamated into the Croatian Armed Forces, which affected the embassy detail only on paper). General Dragicevic survived the seige of Berlin and subsequent imprisonment by the Soviets (served 9 years in a prison camp). Upon his release he described the defense of the embassy building by the security detachment, which for several hours held the Soviets at bay - aparently, rumours of massacres in Berlin at the hands of Soviet soldiers convinced the Croatians that they had nothing to lose by going down fighting. Other than General Dragicevic, there are no other known survivors.

Regards,
Allen/

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Klemen L.
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Post by Klemen L. » 16 Mar 2005 21:25

General Dragicevic survived the seige of Berlin and subsequent imprisonment by the Soviets (served 9 years in a prison camp). Upon his release he described the defense of the embassy building by the security detachment, which for several hours held the Soviets at bay - aparently, rumours of massacres in Berlin at the hands of Soviet soldiers convinced the Croatians that they had nothing to lose by going down fighting.


Allen, you say General Dragicevic described the defense of the embassy buildingby the Croatian security detachment in Berlin in May 1945. May I ask where did you find this description? Did Dragicevic write his memoires after the war? Considering he returned from Soviet captivity in 1954 and settled down in Vienna, where he died in July 1980, he did have IMHO plenty of time to write down his experiences. Not to mention he was a Hero from World War 1 (a MMThO recipient), so he was bound to write something for Kriegsarchiv or Archiv der Republic. Stjepan Duic did, so most likely did he too... :wink:

Other than General Dragicevic, there are no other known survivors.


General Milan Desovic survived the Battle for Berlin too, didn't he?

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Allen Milcic
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Post by Allen Milcic » 16 Mar 2005 23:19

Hi Klemen:

General Desovic (a Montenegrin in NDH service) was not in Berlin during the final battle. He was captured by the US 7th Army in May 1945 [as per his short biography in 'Tko je tko u NDH'], and I suggest he was attached to Donitz's headquarters.

The Dragicevic description of the final days of the NDH's Berlin embassy appeared in an interview published in a Croatian-Canadian newspaper; there is also a short biography in 'Tko je tko u NDH'.

Regards,
Allen/

Panzermahn
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Post by Panzermahn » 17 Mar 2005 07:21

Allen Milcic wrote:
Panzermahn wrote:So, we had Croatians fighting during the Battle of Berlin. What was their fate?

Thanks for the info


Hi Panzermahn:

The Croatian (NDH) Military Attache in Berlin was General Milan Desovic, and he held this post from 1943. His deputy, in charge of weapons procurement for the Croatian state, was General Djuro Dragicevic. The embassy building was protected by a security detachment consisting of Poglavnik Bodyguard Division (Ustasa) and regular Army (Domobranstvo) soldiers, as well a Flak unit of the Croatian Airforce (as of November 1944 the Ustasa forces and the regular forces were amalgamated into the Croatian Armed Forces, which affected the embassy detail only on paper). General Dragicevic survived the seige of Berlin and subsequent imprisonment by the Soviets (served 9 years in a prison camp). Upon his release he described the defense of the embassy building by the security detachment, which for several hours held the Soviets at bay - aparently, rumours of massacres in Berlin at the hands of Soviet soldiers convinced the Croatians that they had nothing to lose by going down fighting. Other than General Dragicevic, there are no other known survivors.

Regards,
Allen/


Hi Allen,

Thanks for the interesting info..General Dragicevic was the only Croatian survivor of the 100+ Croatian security detachment who fought at Berlin....Those Croatian soldiers were certainly true to their Za Dom Spremni ideal in the final conflagaration in Berlin

Kunnar Kesküla
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Post by Kunnar Kesküla » 17 Mar 2005 10:10

Estonians was in Berlin probably 30 young boys from Luftwaffen hilfsdienst.
No evidences that any of them survived.

Panzermahn
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Post by Panzermahn » 17 Mar 2005 12:12

Kunnar Kesküla wrote:Estonians was in Berlin probably 30 young boys from Luftwaffen hilfsdienst.
No evidences that any of them survived.


Hello comrade Kunnar,

Brigadefuhrer Gustav Krukenberg's (commander of the 33rd Waffen Grenadier Division Charlemagne) unpublished memoirs mentioned that there were some remnants of the 20th SS estonian division in his sector

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