Warcrimes against 17 SS Götz von Berlichingen

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Marcus
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Warcrimes against 17 SS Götz von Berlichingen

Post by Marcus » 05 Jun 2003 19:04

The two below quotes detailing warcrimes committed against soldiers of the 17. SS-Panzergrenadier-Division Götz von Berlichingen are from "Iron Fist: A combat history of the 17. SS Panzergrenadier Division 'Gotz von Berlichingen'" by Antonio J. Munoz, and I'm wondering if anyone has any additional details on these events.
Thanks.
Ironically, Nuremberg fell on Hitler's birthday (the 20th). About two hundred SS grenadiers belonging to the I Battalion, 38th SS Regiment, were eventually captured by the 42nd Infantry Division. The fate of these men had been shrouded in mystery for many years. Eyewitnesses to what happened to these men were not forthcoming. Eventually, shortly after the war, some citizens of that city directed Red Cross officials to what turned out to be a mass grave which yielded two hundred bodies, all in Waffen-SS uniforms. The grave was located just west of the city. Nothing was done to identify these men or how they came to be there until 1976, when the remains of one of the corpses was positively identified as that of SS-Hauptsturmführer Kukula, the commander of I Battalion, 38th SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment. Further autopsies on the other bodies soon followed, showing that many of the men in that grave had been beated to death this blunt instruments (possibly rifle butts). Most had been shot at very close range, suggesting that a massacre had taken place.
Unconfired reports state that an additional seventeen members of the "Götz von Berlichingen" Division were shot at Eberstettin after they had surrendered. The presence of the Dachau camp in the vicinity might have had something to do with this massacre
/Marcus

Rob - wssob2
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17th SS Nuremberg

Post by Rob - wssob2 » 05 Jun 2003 20:40

Hi Marcus --

I've often wondered about that incident as well. Unfortunately Munoz doesn't site his source nor provide any footnotes. I've never seen mention of the incident anywhere else. You'd think that if there were a possibility of a war crime against the 17th SS, the HIAG and others would have publicized it.

Are you sure the "Eberstettin" incident you mention isn't actually the "Webling" incident mentioned in Andrew Mollo's article? (After the Battle #27) Sound very similar, if not the same. As far as I've been able to determine the incident at Webling happened before the 42nd troops entered the Dachau SS complex.

BTW one former US Army veteran mentioned to me that the unofficial "motto" of the 42nd was "One-third shootin', one-third lootin' and one-third painting rainbows" 8O I'm not sure if that's what the Rainbowmen said of themselves or if its just the joke of a rival division.

One issue that I've run into with regards to investigating the Webling ~ Dachau incidents in late April '45 is that the US XV corps basically stopped keeping POW tallies (i.e. recording prisioner's name, rank, serial unit, unit, etc.) in the last week of April due to the high volume of Germans surrendering. There were just too many to process. Which means its hard for us to determine which

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Marcus
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Post by Marcus » 05 Jun 2003 21:34

Thanks Rob, but the last part of your message seem to be missing.

/Marcus

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Arminiusder Cherusker1
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War Crmes against the 17. SS-Div. GvB

Post by Arminiusder Cherusker1 » 07 Jun 2003 20:26

Dear Marcus,
it is true, that the SS-Panzergrenadierregiment 38 had to stay at Nurem-
berg, while the rest of the Division was ordered south to Ingolstadt,
Pfaffenhofen and Bad Toelz.
So it's to explain, that in the "Kriegstagebuch" of the Division you can't
find anything about this massacre.
It is a fact, that GI's from the 222.Infantrie-Regiment draw a long blood-
trace from Heilbronn over Orlach, Jungholzhausen,Webling, Dachau, Haar,
Oberpframmern and Utting for example.
When I was a POW in Le Havre, a staffsergeant told me, that in this Division served a lot of former criminals for probation.That may explain
those warcrimes.
I don't have to tell you about the so called "Webling Incident",where 47
members of the Waffen-SS were murdered after they had surrendered.
(Mollo,after the battle, Nr. 27).
The same happened before and after Webling, a lot of unknown young
SS-Soldiers got murdered after they had surrendered on the way of
this so called Rainbow-Division on theyr way through South-Germany.
I worked some years in the "Suchdienst" of the 6. SS-Gebirgsdivision
"Nord" and visited some places, where I spoke to witnesses. Even the
pastor of Orlach/Crailsheim told me what happened and he wrote it
down in his monthly publication, which I still posess. He tells, how they
even treated him and didn't allow him, to take the "Soldbuecher" of the
murdered soldiers. Most of them were brought at nighttime to Bens-
heim/Bergstrasse, where they put them in a massgrave for unknown
soldiers.

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Deterance
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Post by Deterance » 10 Jun 2003 04:55

In regars to the possiblity of Rainbow Division having a disproportionate number of criminals.....

About 50 US soldiers were executed for criminal acts through out war. May be a disproportionate number were from the Rainbow Division?

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Post by Panzermahn » 10 Jun 2003 06:14

arminiusder,

are u a waffen ss veteran like HaEn? if you are, which waffen ss division you are formerly from?

panzermahn

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Arminiusder Cherusker1
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Warcrimes against 16. DD-Div. GvB

Post by Arminiusder Cherusker1 » 10 Jun 2003 07:00

Panmzermahn,

I was a member of the 6. SS.Gebirgsdivision "NORD".

Regards
Arminius

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