Massacre on the Isthmus of Maaselkä?

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Rauli
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Massacre on the Isthmus of Maaselkä?

Post by Rauli » 23 Feb 2005 18:07

[This thread was split from "The moderators are all Scandophiles" thread by the moderator -- DT]

Personally my interest to the war crimes is purely historical. Some of us might have more personal issues but the idea that swedish or finnish war crimes etc. is some sort of taboo... Not likely.

I will give you example: During the summer 1942 a soviet "partisan brigade" managed to pass finnish outposts in the Isthmus of Maaselkä. Finnish found out their existence in the rear area and went after the partisan brigade. The Partisan brigade was circa 600 strong. A Series of chaotic and sporadic firefights ensued and only handfull of "partisans" managed to reach back to the soviet lines.

Sometime in the 70´s soviets found a place where in the small area was 150+ bodies from the Partisan brigade. No finnish unit reported having had a battle in that area. Mysterious... A possible war crime? Perhaps, perhaps not. But once again, I don´t take these discussions personally.

Best regards,

Rauli

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Juha Tompuri
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Re: Massacre on the Isthmus of Maaselkä?

Post by Juha Tompuri » 23 Feb 2005 22:54

Rauli wrote:During the summer 1942 a soviet "partisan brigade" managed to pass finnish outposts in the Isthmus of Maaselkä. Finnish found out their existence in the rear area and went after the partisan brigade. The Partisan brigade was circa 600 strong. A Series of chaotic and sporadic firefights ensued and only handfull of "partisans" managed to reach back to the soviet lines.
According to "Suomi Sodassa" (Finland at War) by Jorma Järventaus etc. The strenght of the unit was 592 male and 46 female "partisans". According to the Finnish version of the Soviet era "Za tsertoj miloserdija" ( Korpi ei tunne armoa, No mercy at the wilderness) by Dimitri Gusarov 119 (120?) of them got home ("less 20" of them being female). Of the KIA 80 male "partisans" had died of hunger. According to the "Sissiprikaatin tuho" ( The Destruction of the Partisan Brigade) by Pentti H. Tikkanen 24 "partisans" were taken POW. Finnish casualities at the operations were KIA: 2 officers, 7 Nco and 28 privates. WIA: 9 officers, 18 Nco and 54 privates. One officer was MIA ( probably taken POW by the "partisans" and executed later. A war crime.
Sometime in the 70´s soviets found a place where in the small area was 150+ bodies from the Partisan brigade. No finnish unit reported having had a battle in that area.
From the Tikkanen and Gusarov books it can be found out that the unit was ambushed while crossing an open swamp. October 4th 1970 the remains of the 70 fallen "partisans", found few months earlier, were buried at the cemetery of the village Paatene.

Regards, Juha

Here two pics from the Tikkanen book:
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Post by David Thompson » 23 Feb 2005 23:10

Readers who want to know more about Soviet partisans operating in Finnish-controlled areas during WWII may find this thread of interest:

Warcrimes of Soviet partisans at Finnish front 1941-44
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=47227

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 23 Feb 2005 23:39

Thanks David,

Regards, Juha

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Juha Hujanen
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Post by Juha Hujanen » 25 Feb 2005 16:46

There's a article in Kansa Taisteli magazine 7/67 that could fit to this case.The article is written by 1st Lt.Viljo Vierimaa.He was CO of 7./12th Brigade and his company encircled and destroyed an partisan unit North of River Tumba around 6-7.8.42.

The partisan unit didn't surrender but fought to their death.Some 80 dead partisan were counted,including 8 women.That could be the case which Järventaus mentions "...c.70 men strong partisan unit Avengers was send to fetch rations from Lake Sidra.Whole unit was found dead in close of each others in 1970..."

The Avengers partisan unit was likely the Detachment 116 (Mstitelj),which operated in Sekee sector earlier.Its CO was Karelian known as Nikolajev.

I know a man whos granfather was in machine-gun crew,when remains of Partisan Brigade broke thru Finnish lines in Valkealammella in 15.8.42.This man has collected his granfathers tale to a book and will publish it sometimes.I'll post his story when book is released.

Cheers/Juha

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Post by David Thompson » 25 Feb 2005 16:55

Thanks for the additional information, Juha.

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 25 Feb 2005 17:51

Here is a little background information on the 1st Partisan Brigade:

Commander Maj. I. Grigoryev (Karelian)
Commissar N. Aristov
Chief of Staff Capt. Koleshnikov

HQ
Reconnaissance Platoon (30 men; 3x Recon Squad, equipped with 12 SMGs and semi-automatic rifles)
Engineer Platoon (32 men, 3x Engineer Squad)
Medical Platoon (46 women, Physician; tent; 7x Medical Squad, equipped with pistols)
Detachment "Antikainen"
Detachment "Avengers"
Detachment "Tshapayev"
Detachment "Brothers-in-Arms"
Detachment "For Fatherland"
Detachment "Stormbird"

Detachments (strength about 100 men and women) were as follows:

Leader (Lieutenant or Senior Lieutenant)
Deputy Leader
Political Conductor
Messengers
7x Female Army Surgeon
3x Platoon (30 men)

Equipment of each Detachment:
- LMG (Dektyarev or Browning)
- 9x SMG (captured Suomi m/31 or PPSh)
- other men had rifles (for example Mauser)
- light pistols
- each men had two hand grenades
- detachment had 1000 cartridges for LMG, 300 for each SMG and 150 for each rifle
- food for 20 days (mostly of American origin)
- radio
- 2 - 3x compass
- normal Soviet military uniforms, American boots

Brigade had a total of nine detachments but only the six best ones were selected for this mission.

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Topspeed
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Post by Topspeed » 25 Feb 2005 22:27

Is a fight against enemy partisans behind the lines a war crime ?

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 25 Feb 2005 23:13

No. That's why I suggest this thread should be moved to Winter and Continuation War section and re-named. I think David [Thompson] misunderstood the meaning of Rauli? I think he only speculated about the typical Soviet claims.

On the other hand Finnish troops that chased Partisan Brigade had an order to kill all Partisans of the brigade. That was probably not difficult because Partisans usually didn't surrender and they fought until the last bullet or handgrenade (which was reserved for themselves). They didn't take prisoners and killed them immediately or after interrogation. So, the Partisan warfare was merciless on both sides and the Finnish troops were well aware of that too.

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Post by David Thompson » 25 Feb 2005 23:30

Rauli said, of the discovery of a group of bodies of Soviet partisans :
Sometime in the 70´s soviets found a place where in the small area was 150+ bodies from the Partisan brigade. No finnish unit reported having had a battle in that area. Mysterious... A possible war crime? Perhaps, perhaps not.
Topspeed said:
Is a fight against enemy partisans behind the lines a war crime ?
Harri replied:
No. That's why I suggest this thread should be moved to Winter and Continuation War section and re-named. I think David [Thompson] misunderstood the meaning of Rauli? I think he only speculated about the typical Soviet claims.
There was no misunderstanding about Rauli's post. Rauli raised the possibility that the discovery might or might not indicate a war crime. That is why I put a question mark in the the thread title. Furthermore, a fair reading of the thread shows that I neither expressed an opinion nor offered any speculation whatsoever on the matter.

We get "Possible war crime?" threads in the H&WC section fairly frequently. The idea is to get more information on the subject -- one of the main purposes of a research section of the forum.

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 24 Mar 2005 23:13

Last weekend I visited the War Museum at Helsinki.
Here some items that once belonged to the partisan brigade commander I.Grigoryev.
Can anybody translate the text at the plate at the Mauser stock?

Regards, Juha
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RoW
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Post by RoW » 24 Mar 2005 23:40

Juha Tompuri wrote:Last weekend I visited the War Museum at Helsinki.
Here some items that once belonged to the partisan brigade commander I.Grigoryev.
Can anybody translate the text at the plate at the Mauser stock?

Regards, Juha
Keepsake on patriotic
war 1941-42
to I.A.Grigoryev

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 25 Mar 2005 00:00

RoW,

Thank you very much for your help

Best Regards, Juha

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igor_verh
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Re:

Post by igor_verh » 20 Feb 2013 10:45

Juha Hujanen wrote: I know a man whos granfather was in machine-gun crew,when remains of Partisan Brigade broke thru Finnish lines in Valkealammella in 15.8.42.This man has collected his granfathers tale to a book and will publish it sometimes.I'll post his story when book is released.
Hello! What about this memoirs - was it published somewhere?

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