German claims of Australian/New Zealand Attrocities on Crete

Discussions on the Holocaust and 20th Century War Crimes. Note that Holocaust denial is not allowed. Hosted by David Thompson.
User avatar
Anzac
Member
Posts: 264
Joined: 01 Jun 2004 15:54
Location: Australia

German claims of Australian/New Zealand Attrocities on Crete

Post by Anzac » 13 Jan 2005 15:23

Hey all, i read somewhere a while back about claims that Australian & New Zealand forces on Crete clubbed and bayonetted to death surrendering Germans on Crete. Does anybody have anymore information on these claims?
Thanks
#RP#

User avatar
Phil V
Financial supporter
Posts: 1635
Joined: 21 May 2002 12:18
Location: Australia (usually)

Post by Phil V » 13 Jan 2005 15:34

Anzac - do you remember where you got this information from?

I've never come across any such suggestions.

P

User avatar
Anzac
Member
Posts: 264
Joined: 01 Jun 2004 15:54
Location: Australia

Post by Anzac » 13 Jan 2005 15:48

Phil V , i don't remember where i read it, it was a while ago. But i have found this websit that brings it up briefly.
On the morning of 27 May 1941 this was the site of one of the most remarkable charges not only in the Crete campaign, but in Australian and New Zealand military history.

First, why is it called 42nd Street? Late in 1940 a small British force had been sent from Egypt to garrison Crete. It included the 42nd Field Company of the Royal Engineers. The sappers bivouacked beside a dirt sunken lane running south from just west of the port of Suda. They christened the lane '42nd Street'. The name was inspired of course by the Ruby Keeler film 42nd Street, winner of the Oscar for best picture for 1933

German accounts of 42nd Street alleged that Australians had bayoneted or clubbed to death men attempting to surrender. There are references in the papers of the British military journalist basil Liddell Hart to rumours which circulated after Crete that the Australians had killed wounded Germans. A German investigation regarded as suspicious the fact that some of the German dead had "stab wounds or broken skulls".
- http://www.iwm.org.uk/upload/package/21 ... rete06.htm

#RP#

User avatar
Juha Hujanen
Financial supporter
Posts: 2196
Joined: 20 Mar 2002 11:32
Location: Suur-Savo,Finland

Post by Juha Hujanen » 13 Jan 2005 16:32

There's more of the subject in Alfred de Zayas book The Wehrmacht War Crimes Bureau 1939-1945.

This might be the same case:

From page 155

2.During the battle around Suda Bay on 27 May 1941 the 1st Mountain Infantry Regiment NO.141 had to retreat temporary to a better position because of enemy superiority and on account of the difficult terrain.

a) All wounded who could not be transported were murdered.

b) Many of the corpses found the next day had been mutilated.

Regards/Juha

JamesL
Member
Posts: 1647
Joined: 28 Oct 2004 00:03
Location: NJ USA

Post by JamesL » 13 Jan 2005 19:34

FWIW.

A friend of mine grew up on Crete. As a little boy, he was forced to watch his grandfather being executed by German soldiers. The grandfather allegedly helped hide British Army stragglers.

With this thread, I can't help but wonder if the Germans were in a dangerous mood because of the atrocities committed on their fellow German soldiers ...... and took revenge on those who helped the Brits.

Its not something I want to bring up with him because it still deeply hurts him.

User avatar
Xavier
Financial supporter
Posts: 3258
Joined: 12 Nov 2002 02:01
Location: Swedish guinea

Post by Xavier » 13 Jan 2005 22:13

the theme has been discuSsed before on this forum, and is well documented, please do a forum search
if you want to see really GROSS pictures of the "claimed" atrocities (are true...).
check here:

http://home.online.no/~vestil/crete/index.htm
and click on the "invasion 1941", lots of pictures..
BE WARNED, SOME IMAGES OF GRAPHIC VIOLENCE...

best regards

Xavier
Instandsetzungtruppfuhrer

David Thompson
Forum Staff
Posts: 23572
Joined: 20 Jul 2002 19:52
Location: USA

Post by David Thompson » 13 Jan 2005 22:43

Thanks Xavier -- You certainly live up to your "Linkfinder" nickname.

User avatar
Phil V
Financial supporter
Posts: 1635
Joined: 21 May 2002 12:18
Location: Australia (usually)

Post by Phil V » 14 Jan 2005 07:54

Anzac wrote:Phil V , i don't remember where i read it, it was a while ago. But i have found this websit that brings it up briefly.
On the morning of 27 May 1941 this was the site of one of the most remarkable charges not only in the Crete campaign, but in Australian and New Zealand military history.

First, why is it called 42nd Street? Late in 1940 a small British force had been sent from Egypt to garrison Crete. It included the 42nd Field Company of the Royal Engineers. The sappers bivouacked beside a dirt sunken lane running south from just west of the port of Suda. They christened the lane '42nd Street'. The name was inspired of course by the Ruby Keeler film 42nd Street, winner of the Oscar for best picture for 1933

German accounts of 42nd Street alleged that Australians had bayoneted or clubbed to death men attempting to surrender. There are references in the papers of the British military journalist basil Liddell Hart to rumours which circulated after Crete that the Australians had killed wounded Germans. A German investigation regarded as suspicious the fact that some of the German dead had "stab wounds or broken skulls".
- http://www.iwm.org.uk/upload/package/21 ... rete06.htm

#RP#
Thanks for the link.

Interesting stuff.

P

JariL
Member
Posts: 425
Joined: 15 Mar 2002 08:45
Location: Finland

Post by JariL » 14 Jan 2005 08:59

Hi,

Beevors book about Crete describes these events as well. As I don't have the book at hand I cannot give any direct references. I don't think that German attrocities against the civilian population were provokes by what the ANZAC troops did. It was a reaction to the armed resistance that the local population offered in many locations. Later on, when British troops had already been evacuated, one of the reasons to support the local resistance movement was to trigger brutal German responses that alienated the population from the Germans for good. Same motive was important also when supporting resistance in France, Norway, Belgium, etc. Germans were easy targets for this kind of harrasment because they often responded so brutally that deed and its concequences were totally out of proportion.

Best regards,

Jari

Panzermahn
Member
Posts: 3639
Joined: 13 Jul 2002 03:51
Location: Malaysia

Post by Panzermahn » 14 Jan 2005 11:51

Later on, when British troops had already been evacuated, one of the reasons to support the local resistance movement was to trigger brutal German responses that alienated the population from the Germans for good. Same motive was important also when supporting resistance in France, Norway, Belgium, etc. Germans were easy targets for this kind of harrasment because they often responded so brutally that deed and its concequences were totally out of proportion.
Hi Jaril,

This is known as the asymmetrical warfare, first perfected by the communist partisans of Tito, partisans in Russia and in Europe. And then repeated back in Vietnam where the Americans won the battle but lose the war and now the same thing in Iraq..Perhaps David could share some of his asymmetrical warfare experience himself during his service as an infantry officer back in the 60s and 70s to us?

Panzermahn
Member
Posts: 3639
Joined: 13 Jul 2002 03:51
Location: Malaysia

Post by Panzermahn » 14 Jan 2005 12:09

Xavier wrote:the theme has been discuSsed before on this forum, and is well documented, please do a forum search
if you want to see really GROSS pictures of the "claimed" atrocities (are true...).
check here:

http://home.online.no/~vestil/crete/index.htm
and click on the "invasion 1941", lots of pictures..
BE WARNED, SOME IMAGES OF GRAPHIC VIOLENCE...

best regards

Xavier
Instandsetzungtruppfuhrer
Hey Xavier,

thanks for the link!! Now i had some materials for Allied war crimes on Crete for our book!!! :wink: :wink: Thanks a lot again!!!

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 14 Jan 2005 14:12

German warcrimes Crete May/June 1941 are discussed here:

http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... ight=crete

Karl Student's trial,May 1946,can be found here:

http://www.ess.uwe.ac.uk/WCC/student.htm

A German White Paper on supposed Allied War Crimes on Crete was issued soon after the event.I'll see if i can dig it up.While mentioning New Zealanders firing under a white flag,and the Cretan populace in rebellion etc,it makes no mention of the Australians,New Zealanders in the 42nd Street battle committing war crimes.

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 14 Jan 2005 14:21

Panzermahn wrote:
Xavier wrote:the theme has been discuSsed before on this forum, and is well documented, please do a forum search
if you want to see really GROSS pictures of the "claimed" atrocities (are true...).
check here:

http://home.online.no/~vestil/crete/index.htm
and click on the "invasion 1941", lots of pictures..
BE WARNED, SOME IMAGES OF GRAPHIC VIOLENCE...

best regards

Xavier
Instandsetzungtruppfuhrer
Hey Xavier,

thanks for the link!! Now i had some materials for Allied war crimes on Crete for our book!!! :wink: :wink: Thanks a lot again!!!

I wouldn't press you luck in taking any of his photos though:the Webmaster has total copyright.

The photos of the German corpses inside the building is at Kandanos "attacked in an ambush,their bodies found mutilated",blamed on the local Cretans and nothing to do with Freyberg's command.

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 14 Jan 2005 14:30

Later on, when British troops had already been evacuated, one of the reasons to support the local resistance movement was to trigger brutal German responses that alienated the population from the Germans for good. Same motive was important also when supporting resistance in France, Norway, Belgium, etc. Germans were easy targets for this kind of harrasment because they often responded so brutally that deed and its concequences were totally out of proportion.
Can you support the allegation that the SOE formented actions that would lead to reprisals?
Hi Jaril,

This is known as the asymmetrical warfare, first perfected by the communist partisans of Tito, partisans in Russia and in Europe. And then repeated back in Vietnam where the Americans won the battle but lose the war and now the same thing in Iraq..Perhaps David could share some of his asymmetrical warfare experience himself during his service as an infantry officer back in the 60s and 70s to us?
David's military service is irrelevant to the discussion:at least he has "walked the walk" though.

David Thompson
Forum Staff
Posts: 23572
Joined: 20 Jul 2002 19:52
Location: USA

Post by David Thompson » 14 Jan 2005 18:38

The Official History of New Zealand in the Second World War 1939–1945
http://www.nzetc.org/corpora/WH2.html

Hopefully the volume on Crete will be released this month, as promised.

Return to “Holocaust & 20th Century War Crimes”