Cretans atrocities against German Fallschirmjaegers 1941

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Panzermahn
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Cretans atrocities against German Fallschirmjaegers 1941

Post by Panzermahn » 12 Dec 2003 11:08

Reinforced Platoon of 72 men from the 2nd Battalion under the command of Leutnant Peter Mürbe. The objective, capture the unfinished airfield at Kastelli Kissamos. (This platoon landed upon 2 battalions of Greek troops and large groups of armed civilians. Leutnant Mürbe and 58 other Fallschirmjäger were killed. The 13 surviving paras under the command of Feldwebel Kroll were forced to surrender late in the morning. Were it not for the intervention of the New Zealand commander in the Kastelli area, Major Bedding, the paras would have been executed. Some of the killed and missing Fallschirmjäger of Kampftruppe Mürbe were later found to have been badly mutilated)





95th Gebirgs Pioneer Battalion – Major Schatte (as this unit fought its way westward to Kastelli, it took fire from groups of armed civilians, which included women and children. They also found many mutilated Fallschirmjäger who had been the victims of these partisans. During the night of May 20th/21st, these armed bandits roamed the countryside looking for dead and dying paras. Nearly 140 men from III/LL.St.Rgt were allegedly murdered or mutilated during that night at the hands of Cretan civilians.)


Had anyone heard of this?

source from

http://www.eagle19.freeserve.co.uk/crete.htm

alf
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Post by alf » 12 Dec 2003 12:23

Reminds me of the Dudley Do Right movie, when the baddie whines

"it isnt fair, they have got rocks and we only have machineguns"

My father fought on Crete, yes the Cretans fought back ferciously, isnt that what your supposed to do when your country is invaded?
My father told me of an incident where his platoon rescued 8-9 German paratroopers who were about to meet the locals villagers. They were relieved to surrender to Allied troops as they had been cut off, when dropped.

Did my dad judge the locals? No, When your villages are bombed and strafed, then the rules of war don't mean anything. The Luftwaffe was indiscriminate in its bombing, whether by intention or accident, who knows now, but for the Cretans , it was the Germans killing their people.
(as an aside, dad thought the German Paratroopers the hardest foes he would ever face, till he met the Japanese Marines and Imperial Guard)

Perhaps panzermahn should broaden his reading and read of the armed german civilians in 1945 fighting the Russians, (including women). John Toland in his book "The Last Hundred Days" descibes such incidents. Undoubtably though that is acceptable and not a war crime.

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Post by Hop » 12 Dec 2003 13:19

Hague IV (1907) speciically allows citizens to take up arms and fight against an invading army, as long as they carry arms openly.

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Peter H
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Post by Peter H » 12 Dec 2003 13:49

Some discussion also on the German punitive actions can be found here:

http://www.thirdreichforum.com/viewtopi ... ight=crete

Under the Hague Convention Article 2 Laws and Customs of War on Land
"The inhabitants of a territory which has not been occupied, who, on the approach of the enemy, spontaneously take up arms to resist the invading troops without having had time to organize themselves in accordance with Article 1, shall be regarded as belligerents if they carry arms openly and if they respect the laws and customs of war."

Unfortunately the no quarter actions of certain Cretan civilians put them outside the protection of this clause and hence the German reprisals were legitimatised.No war crime prosecutions resulted from either side in this sorry state of affairs.

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Post by Witch-King of Angmar » 12 Dec 2003 16:27

Hop wrote:Hague IV (1907) speciically allows citizens to take up arms and fight against an invading army, as long as they carry arms openly.


Then, aren't invaders in the position to shoot them back? :roll: it takes at least 2 sides to fight

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Post by Xavier » 12 Dec 2003 17:30

retailations (heavy handed) arised after the paras discovered bodies of fellow paras mutilated, (eyes gouged out, testicles cut, thoats sliced) and the deceased appeared unarmed (disarmed and then killed), since no weapons were to be found in the vincinity of the bodies.


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Oleg Grigoryev
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Post by Oleg Grigoryev » 12 Dec 2003 19:10

Xavier wrote:retailations (heavy handed) arised after the paras discovered bodies of fellow paras mutilated, (eyes gouged out, testicles cut, thoats sliced) and the deceased appeared unarmed (disarmed and then killed), since no weapons were to be found in the vincinity of the bodies.


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no weapons was probaly found becouse partisans took it with them- they could use any additional unit.

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...

Post by Michael Miller » 12 Dec 2003 22:55

no weapons was probaly found becouse partisans took it with them- they could use any additional unit.



Really? Then add "Thievery of Reich Property" to the list of charges! (just kidding)

~ Mike

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Re: ...

Post by Xanthro » 12 Dec 2003 22:56

Michael Miller wrote:
no weapons was probaly found becouse partisans took it with them- they could use any additional unit.



Really? Then add "Thievery of Reich Property" to the list of charges! (just kidding)

~ Mike


Stop that, I'm not supposed to laugh in the Holocaust section. :D

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Re: ...

Post by White Phosphorus » 12 Dec 2003 23:07

Michael Miller wrote:
no weapons was probaly found becouse partisans took it with them- they could use any additional unit.



Really? Then add "Thievery of Reich Property" to the list of charges! (just kidding)

~ Mike


Wasn't Hartman charged with destruction of Soviet government's property?

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Xavier
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Post by Xavier » 12 Dec 2003 23:12

yes, Indeed.

so it was (is) legal to accuse them of "theft of reichs property..."

and I should have added (or clarified ) in my past post, that the paras seemed to have been disarmed first and then executed (I meant, not killed in combat, ie: the guns taken away first and then shot.)

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Last edited by Xavier on 12 Dec 2003 23:14, edited 1 time in total.

Xanthro
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Re: ...

Post by Xanthro » 12 Dec 2003 23:12

White Phosphorus wrote:
Michael Miller wrote:
no weapons was probaly found becouse partisans took it with them- they could use any additional unit.



Really? Then add "Thievery of Reich Property" to the list of charges! (just kidding)

~ Mike


Wasn't Hartman charged with destruction of Soviet government's property?


I believe he was charged with unintentional killing of civilans, the reasoning being that the shell casing dropped to the ground and killed people.

I haven't read his autobio in a while, so this is both from memory, and only his version of the event.

Xanthro

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Re: ...

Post by John W » 12 Dec 2003 23:36

Xanthro wrote:
White Phosphorus wrote:Wasn't Hartman charged with destruction of Soviet government's property?


I believe he was charged with unintentional killing of civilans
It's the same thing Xanthro :P

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Re: ...

Post by Xanthro » 13 Dec 2003 00:26

John W wrote:
Xanthro wrote:
White Phosphorus wrote:Wasn't Hartman charged with destruction of Soviet government's property?


I believe he was charged with unintentional killing of civilans
It's the same thing Xanthro :P


This thread is going to turn into the comedy channel. LOL.

That was a clever pun, I wish I would have thought of it. :cry:

Xanthro

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Post by David Thompson » 13 Dec 2003 01:39

For interested readers -- Erich "Bubi" Hartmann's account of his war crimes trial can be found here:

http://www.thirdreichforum.com/viewtopi ... c&start=15

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