Soviet abductions of German General Officers

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David Thompson
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Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by David Thompson » 11 Jan 2003 22:50

Can anyone cast some light on these strange disappearances?

Boesser, Karl (1876-1945?) [Generalmajor] -- Reichswehr service; retired as Lieutenant Colonel (ausgeschieden als char. Obstlt.) 31 Jan 1926; re-entered military service as officer of provincial troops (Übernahme L-Offz.) 1 Oct 1933; entered Replacement Officer Corps (Übernahme E-Offz.Korps); OKH Inspector of Driving Troops (im OKH/Inspektion der Fahrtruppe [In 8]); zu den akt. Tr. Offz. Überf; OKH Inspector of Driving Troops (im OKH/Inspektion der Fahrtruppe [In 8]) 1 Sept 1939; senior officer for administrative troops in OKH (Höh. Offz. für Verwaltungs-Truppen im OKH) 1 Apr 1942; retired (Abschied) 31 Mar 1943 {disappeared 17 May 1945 in Soviet captivity ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H) and thereafter missing (verschleppt 1945 im Osten [vermißt]) (ABR-H).}

von Boltenstern, Walter (1889-1952) [Generalleutnant] -- Reichswehr service; commander, 71st Infantry Regiment 1 Sept 1939; commander, 29th Infantry Division (motorized) 7 Sept 1940-20 Sept 1941; commander, 179th Division 20 Jan 1942-10 May 1944; retired 30 Jan 1945 [Knights Cross 1941]{abducted by Soviet authorities at war's end (bei Kriegsende von den Russen verschleppt); died in Soviet captivity 19 Jan 1952 (ABR-H; ABR-Croisier-H; Hitler Moves East p. 43).}

Dahlmann, Reinhold [Generalmajor] -- O.F. St. Holland {MIA Apr 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Feichtmeier, Josef (1883-1945) [Generalleutnant] -- Austrian Army service (österr.Bundesheer); commander, Ist Battalion of XVII Provincial Defense Regiment (Lds. Schtz. R. 1/XVII) 1 Sept 1939; commander, 664th Infantry Regiment 10 Mar 1940; staff, Military District South (Abschn. Stab Süd) 27 Aug 1940; Kgf. Verf. St. Wien 24 Jun 1941; commander of POW camps in the Ukraine (Kdr Kgf. i. d. Ukraine) 1941-22 Nov 1942; Mob.Best.aufgeh 31 Mar 1943; z.V.Stellung aufgeh. 31 Aug 1943 {kidnapped or abducted 1945 by Soviet authorities and thereafter missing ("1945 verschleppt u. seitdem vermisst") (ABR-H); ("von Sowjet.verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Grachegg, Gustav [Generalmajor] -- z.V. Stellung aufgehoben {MIA 13 May 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("von Sowjet.verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Hauffe, Artur (1891-1944) [General der Infanterie] -- commander, XIII Army Corps [Knights Cross] {KIA near Lvov 22 Jul 1944 (Quiet Flows the Rhine p. 126; ABR-Croisier-H); or taken prisoner 23 Jul 1944 southwest of Brody (NYT 26 Jul 1944:4:2), transported to Moscow and subsequently disappeared (Galicia Division pps. 485-6 f.1).}

Heidrich, Fritz [Generalmajor] – commander, 326th Artillery Regiment {MIA 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

von Kurnatowski, Ernst [Generalmajor] -- officer for special assignments (Offz. z.b.V.) {disappeared in Soviet custody 18 Aug 1945 ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Ohnacker, Jakob [Generalmajor] -- service, 20th Field Inspection Unit (Fldzg. Insp. 20) {MIA 1 Aug 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("verschleppt und seither vermisst") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

von Plotho, Wolfgang Edler Herr und Freiherr [Generalleutnant] – commander, 285th Security Division 15 Mar 1941-5 Sept 1942 (Third Reich Factbook) {MIA Jul 1946 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("verschleppt und seither vermisst") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Sachsee, Eugen [Generalmajor] – commander, 530th Field Command (Feldkommandantur - F.K. 530 {MIA Aug 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

Saalwächter, Alfred (1883-1945) [Generaladmiral] – chief, Navy Group Command West Aug 1939-Sept 1942 (Nazi Conspiracy & Aggression VI, pps. 624-634 [Document 3739-PS]); special assignments officer, Kriegsmarine high command (z. Vfg. d. OB d. Kriegsmarine) [Knights Cross] {taken prisoner by Soviet troops; sentenced to death by firing squad and executed 17 Oct 1945 ("06.12.1945 am 11.07.1945 von den Russen verschleppt; 17.10.1945 zum Tode verurteilt und erschossen.") (ABR-Croisier-K).}

von Vollard-Bockelberg, Alfred (1874-1945) [General der Artillerie] – WWI veteran; military commander of Paris (Mil. Bef. Paris) [Pour le Merité] {MIA 1945 – disappeared in Soviet custody ("von Sowjet. verschleppt") (ABR-Croisier-H).}

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Post by Peter » 12 Jan 2003 09:27

David
I reckon that here you are looking at the casual attitude of the Soviets to the lives of prisoners generally. I dont think there is anything particular to connect these disappearances.

I'm currently researching 130 British & Commonwealth ex-Prisoners liberated by the Red Army who then disappeared and never came home, just like the Vietnam POW/MIA issue. There are additional numbers of ex-POW's both British & Commonwealth and US who were simply shot out of hand after "liberation by Soviet forces" as they were considered "suspicious".

Pete

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Post by Minotauros » 12 Jan 2003 10:37

Hi David ! :)

I'll take the liberty to add to your list Generalmajor Max Ilgen (13.4.1894 in Königsberg-15.11.1943 disappeared near Rovno, Ukraine).
He was the commander of [/i]Osttrupp.740.
Awarded the
Deutsches Kreuz in Gold on 17.9.1944.

German documents state that he disappeared ("seit 1943 bei Rowno vermisst").
He was, in fact, ambushed by Soviet partisans on 15 November 1943, captured, put in a small plane and flown out to Moscow.

Hope this helps !

Regards ! :D

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Post by David Thompson » 12 Jan 2003 21:27

Thanks, guys! When I was reading through old (1945-1950) issues of the New York and London Times, I would occasionally come upon stories of prominent persons, living in West Germany and Austria, who would be kidnapped and thereafter never heard from. These abductions were usually attributed to Soviet agents. I wondered if anything had been published on the subject.

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Post by Peter » 13 Jan 2003 08:30

The "Iron Cage" by Nigel Cawthorne deals with US & British officers and men kidnapped by the Soviets but despite searching I've found nothing on German's although I was sure that I'd read a "Gehlen" type book which mentioned several incidents (Not found the book again though).
cheers
Pete

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Disappearances in Soviet captivity

Post by David Thompson » 01 Feb 2009 18:37

After six years, I thought I'd give this thread a bump and see if anyone had information on these abductions, or any more examples of other alleged Soviet abductions. The topic seems to be an historical "black hole."

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Re: Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by David Thompson » 06 Feb 2015 07:06

Another six years have passed, so I'll try another "bump" to see if anyone knows something about this.

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JakeV
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Re: Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by JakeV » 06 Feb 2015 10:14

Hello,

This topic draws also my interest. But admittedly, even 12 years later there hasn't been any substantial progress.

GL Walter Hugo Thurow von Boltenstern
† 19.01 1952 im Lager Nr. 48 Tschernzy (Чернцы)/Oblast Iwanowo/Rußland (died of sepsis after a surgery)

GdI Arthur Hauffe
† 22.07.1944 bei Knyasche (Княже) bei Solotschiw/Ukraine (Hauffe had been captured on 22.07.1944 in Solotschiw and was marched westwards, but was killed on the same day, when a vehicle in front of him was hit apparently by a high explosive shell

GL Wolfgang Moritz Delphin Edler Herr und Freiherr von Plotho
† 09.11.1946, apparently at a soviet Speziallager [this is the usual assumption in the cases no place of death is given]

GM Ernst von Kurnatowski
† 08.05.1948 im Butyrka-Gefängnis in Moskau

GenAdm Alfred Saalwächter
† 06.12.1945 in Berlin (hingerichtet) (shot after he was convicted of war crimes by a Soviet military tribunal)

Sources: http://samlib.ru/m/minaew_d_n/generals_z_1.shtml and Volksbund

Now, as for the Austrians: I point you to the book Sowjetisierung oder Neutralität? Optionen sowjetischer Besatzungspolitik in Deutschland und
Österreich 1945–1955
, p. 202ff and Österreichs Generale im deutschen Heer: 1938–1945, p. 94ff: During the early phases of the Soviet occupation of Austria, the Soviet authorities naturally began to search for Wehrmacht officers who were implicated to war crimes. Those includer Hugo Schäfer, Josef Feichtmeier, Gustav Grachegg and Paul (Ritter von) Wittas — all of them, at some point during WWII, were commanders of POW camps or were employed in the POW affairs area. Hugo Schäfer, when learned he was sought, naively reported himself to the authorities, and shortly thereafter he was denounced by a KPÖ functionary. He was convicted of war crimes on 13.09.1945 by a Soviet tribunal and was executed by firing squad on 12.11.1945 in St. Pölten. Wittas was luckier, as he managed to flee to the western occupation zone before he was arrested.

The book Sowjetisierung oder Neutralität? claims that it is probable that Grachegg was also executed in a similar fashion, although officially he is still classidfied as "missing". I would argue that perhaps the same happened to Feichtmeier. I am interested in him, as he is one of the few cases we don't even know when he went missing. I thought of sending a tracing request to the Austrian Red Cross, but since I'm not related to him and I don't possess the required information pertaining to his parents, wife etc, I am reluctant to do so. In any case, he was still living in Wien in 1944.

Regards

Jake

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Georges JEROME
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Re: Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by Georges JEROME » 08 Feb 2015 18:57

Hello,

here is a list of Generals who died as russian P.O.W. (A-B)

ADAM Wilhelm Gen.Lt 1946
ALTRICHTER Friedrich Gen. Lt 1949
AREBSTORFF von Hans Adolf Gen. Maj. 1952
BARENDS Erwin Gen. Maj. 1952
BAURMEISTER Hans Joachim Gen. Maj. 1950
BAYER Friedrich Gen. Lt. 1953
BELOW von Gerd Gen. Maj. d R. 1953
BOCK Max Gen. d. Inf. 1946
BOECKH-BEHRENS Hans Gen. Lt. 1955
BOLTENSTERN von Walter Gen. Lt 1952
BRAUNER von HAYDRINGEN Josef Gen. Lt 1953

Georges

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Georges JEROME
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Re: Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by Georges JEROME » 08 Feb 2015 19:03

Generals who died as russian P.O.W. (C-E)
DAUBER Julius Gen. Maj. 1947
DEBOI Heinrich Gen. Lt. 1953
DEWITZ von gen. von KREBS Stanislaus Gen. Maj. 1953
DUTZMANN Dr Max Gen. Int. 194?
DYBILASZ Dipl. Ing. Walter Gen. Maj. 1950
EBERTH Anton Gen. Maj. 1955
ENCKEVORT von Gerhard Gen.Maj. 1945 (he was himself kdt Stalag III D)

Georges

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Re: Soviet abductions of German General Officers

Post by Kriegsmarine Großadmiral » 23 Sep 2019 18:57

Is it confirmed Saalwächter died in Berlin? Some sources mention Moscow.
Kriegsmarine Großadmiral

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