POW's

Discussions on WW2 in Western Europe & the Atlantic.
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Pips
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Location: Canberra, ACT, Australia

POW's

Post by Pips » 06 Nov 2019 05:13

Curious if anyone has specific numbers of British and American soldiers taken prisoner, dating from D-Day to war's end.

Note: British would include any nationality that fought under British control eg Canadians, Polish etc. American would include the Free French units that fought under US control.

Cheers :)

Art
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Re: POW's

Post by Art » 06 Nov 2019 08:38


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Pips
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Re: POW's

Post by Pips » 09 Nov 2019 01:25

Thanks Art. :)

Knouterer
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Re: POW's

Post by Knouterer » 10 Nov 2019 08:06

By the end of 1940 over 40,000 British and Commonwealth prisoners were in German hands, this number had increased to 169,000 by the end of 1944. The number taken in 1945 must have been very small. There were some exchanges of seriously ill or disabled POWs in the course of the war.

The overall death rate was about 3% it seems. The rations provided by the Germans were insufficient in the long run but were compensated by food packages which POWs received through the Red Cross.

The Australian government worked it out precisely for its POWs in German hands, many of whom were taken relatively early in the war in North Africa:

Total returned 6,346

Of which:

Escaped 135

Repatriated (exchanged) 811

Liberated at end of war 5,400

149 died, of which 45 through enemy action (mainly during escape attempts presumably), 25 of wounds, and 79 of diseases.

This seems to have been fairly representative for Commonwealth prisoners.
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