Tuesday, September 18, 2012

They Seized Three Year Old Children and Shot Them: Darkest Atrocities of the Nazis Laid Bare

Nazis lead Polish women to slaughter
Nazi machine gunner over a Polish city. They bragged of targeting mothers with strollers. 
"They Seized Three Year Old Children and Shot Them: Darkest atrocities of the Nazis laid bare in the secretly recorded conversations of German prisoners of war"

From the Daily Mail.

Bestselling German book to be published in English next week
Chilling insight into what turns an ordinary soldier into a monster
Dispels the idea that it was only a few who committed such horrors

By Allan Hall

16 September 2012

Some of the most brutal and horrifying atrocities of the Nazis at war are laid bare in secretly recorded conversations of captured German soldiers published in Britain for the first time today.

The prisoners, mostly ordinary soldiers, sailors and airmen as opposed to SS hardliners, are overheard bragging about shooting women and children for sport as well as raping and slaughtering innocent civilians.

Historian Sönke Neitzel's 2001 book 'Soldiers; diaries of fighting, killing and dying', caused a sensation when it was published in Germany last year. And next week it will be published in English for the first time.

It shows the impact of war on…40 per cent of German men between the years of 1939 and 1945 - the nearly 20 million who donned a uniform for their Fuehrer.

Both the ordinary German soldier, and the self-regarding officer corps, are condemned in their own words in the secret recordings, shattering the myth that excesses in wartime were the responsibility of a few fanatical party members.

One man, Hartigs was speaking of the targets he liked to go for - unarmed civilians - when the microphones were switched on one day in January 1945.

'I used to shoot at everything,' he said laconically, 'certainly not just military targets. We liked to go for women pushing prams, often with children at their sides. It was a kind of sport really.....'

Or this from another unnamed Oberleutnant of the Luftwaffe, captured on July 17 1940 after baling out from his aircraft over Kent; 'It became a need in me to drop bombs. It tingles me, gives me a fine feeling. Just as beautiful, in fact, as shooting at someone.'

This banishment of morality, of ethical behaviour, is apparent in transcript after transcript. Hitler had boasted in the early days of the regime of turning the youth of Nazi Germany into 'magnificent beasts of prey.' But even wild beasts never killed for sport, like radio operator Eberhard Kehrle and infantryman Franz Kneipp.

Kehrle; 'In the Caucasus, when one us went down, we didn't need a lieutenant giving the orders, telling us what to do. Pistols out, women and children, everything you saw...cleansed.'

Kneipp; 'With us, one time, a partisan band had overrun a convoy of our wounded. They offed everyone. Half an hour later they were caught near Novgorod. They were brought into a sandpit and then, from all sides, we let rip with the machine guns and the pistols....'

Kehrle; 'That was too good for them. They deserved to die slowly, not to be killed by shooting!'

In WW2, in a pre-Internet age, pre mobile-phone age - a time when a German soldier could be executed for taking a camera into combat - they were, by and large, confident that their excesses would never be detected.....rape being one of them.

Germany has long castigated the leadership of the Red Army and Stalin himself for turning a blind eye to the mass rapes carried out by the conquering armies of Zhukov and Rossokovsky when they hit German territory in 1945. But, in reality, it was payback on a massive scale for crimes carried out by men like Sgt. Mueller.

'When I was in Kharkov,' he said dreamily, clearly remembering happier times, 'everything in the old town was destroyed. It was a wonderful town with wonderful memories. All the people spoke a little German that they had learned in school.

'Also in Taganrog, wonderful cinemas and beautiful beach cafes. I went everywhere in the car. You saw nothing but women.'

His friend Fausst says; 'Oh, you bastard!'

Mueller went on; 'They were working to repair things, these deadly beautiful girls. We simply drove by them, tore them into the car, lay them down, and then chucked them out when we had finished. Man, did they fly!'

Indoctrinated since their childhood by Nazi propaganda into believing they were supermen who could take what they wanted, defeat and capture had clearly not tilted their world view one bit.

One junior officer boasted of what he and his men did to a woman they thought was a Russian spy: 'We beat her on the tits with a stick, clobbered her on the arse with a pistol, then all eight of us had her, then we threw her out and as she lay there, we threw grenades at her.

'She didn't half scream when they went off!' Even one fellow German officer, Reimbold, was sickened by the telling of the tale and said; 'Gentlemen, this is too much to bear.'

Aside from the depravity of individuals, the transcripts reveal that which the war generation, and in many ways the one that followed it, tried to deny: direct knowledge of the extermination programme of the Jews...


Entire article visible here

16 comments:

  1. Dear Goska,Id like to recommend a good,scientific book which explains the psychology behind such evil pretty well (and also suggests,how to use the same mechanism to better human beings)- Zimbardo-The Lucifer Effect.How is it possible to feel virtually no responsibility for such crimes? The answer is human nature,still, the perpetrators are responsible...

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  2. I haven't read it Danusha, thanks for the warning, just did a very quick skim of what you have posted. This is mainly for Psalm 37 reasons - I don't want to get heated up so that I end up behaving in a horrible way myself - but also because I no longer know what to believe of what I am told about WW2, because of the way Poland is being moved into the Axis camp as the official history of the war spins to its political agenda.

    Could such things have happened?

    How could I doubt it? I only wish I could. I have just been trying to read - but once again can only skim - the story of Robert Blincoe, called "the real Oliver Twist".

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Real-Oliver-Twist-Illuminates/dp/1840467274

    I think my skimming of it has stopped me being able to sleep - which is why I am posting to your blog in the early hours. Robert's first memory was being taken to the Workhouse at the age of 4, then, in the 1790's he is given to a cotton mill owner in the North of England. What happens to him is beyond deprivation. The children were tortured and killed. There was a plentiful supply of them. They cost nothing and worked non stop on a starvation diet.

    Amazingly, Robert Blincoe managed to survive, grow up and make something of himself, and i think tried to do something to help destitute children. I wasn't able to go on reading it. He bore the scars of the torture he suffered all his life.

    From the little I was able to read of his story, the children were tortured for the "fun" of it, because they were completely defenceless and because the mill owner and his supervisors, and his family, could.

    So certainly this article could be true. Every word of it.

    Here is a question though. Why? Why did these things happen in Christendom? What was the Church of England, so powerful at that time, teaching people?

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  3. Hanna, yes, Zimbardo. And also the Nazis developed an ideology that made their behavior not only excusable, but admirable.

    See this blog post:

    http://bieganski-the-blog.blogspot.com/2010/10/peasants-darwin-nazis.html

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  4. Sue, thank you for Robert Blincoe's story.

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  5. I posted the above article at least partly because the Bieganski stereotype is often justified by saying, hey, Poles didn't suffer like Jews did.

    It's undeniable that the fate of the Jews, as a group, in Poland, differed greatly from the fate of the Poles, as a group.

    But Poles were treated horribly by the Nazis. They are often depicted in films as living a high life while blissfully uncaring about Jewish suffering.

    Also, as "Bieganski" makes clear, the Nazis were not the first invaders, exploiters, or colonizers to exploit stereotypes of Poles as brutes to justify their abuse.

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  6. To see works that I have reviewed on the WWII genocidal German crimes in Poland, directed against both Jews and Poles, please click on my specific name in this posting.

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  7. There is a trend to whitewash German crimes such as those described in this blog. To refute this revisionism, that is, falification of history, please see my Listmania of self-reviewed books on this subject by clicking on my name in this posting.

    As for the cause of these behaviors among "ordinary" Germans, I think that it stems from centuries of German chauvinism and militarism. I am not saying that ALL Germans were like this, but rather suggest that the main trends in German thinking, over many centuries, had been ones of belligerence and other base instincts.

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  8. Yes, clearly, for this to happen, you have to "other" or "unter" people. Under Nazi ideology, Poles (and many others) were "untered" by their race. Robert Blincoe was "othered" by his poverty and his being an orphan with no protector in the adult world.

    Yet Christian teaching is the perfect antidote to all this. It does not allow "untering", as it says we are all the fatally flawed children of Adam - all one family, none of us perfect. And both Hebrew and Christian Greek Scriptures teach us that we are to care for the weak and defenceless - especially "widows and orphans". Jehovah knows how vulnerable they would be, and are, in a world system run by Satan.

    So, had Germany been a Christian country, could Nazi ideology have taken hold?

    Had England been a Christian country, could orphans have been used as slave labour - under conditions so brutal that I could not even bear to read the full account of them?

    And re your publishing the article, there is a balance to be struck between not keeping account of the injury and trying to get the truth out there in the face of the political agenda you refer to which is trying to spin Poles into allies of the Nazis, rather than a direct target of them. This article demonstrates very clearly that Poles were victims, not allies, of Hitler.

    So thanks for posting.

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  9. I just found a touching and fascinating article by one of the descendants of Robert Blincoe.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2005/sep/28/fiction.shopping

    It ends like this, for he has no idea what Robert's name was or who his parents were. He would have been allocated a name at the Workhouse: "So what should I make of my name - in all likelihood, a slave name? For better or worse, it is Dickensian: exotic and silly. It sounds a lot like Bilko, something one is acutely aware of in a family of big-nosed, short-sighted folk. But it is better than Swubbles or Vilkins, and after reading The Real Oliver Twist, some pride in my family name is restored. I will not be changing my name to Nicholas X."

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  10. As I have said, its no good me trying to tell myself that these things could not have happened. They do, and they have, and they are happening now. Isn't that why we pray for God's kingdom to come? For His will to be done upon the earth? Then all these horrors will vanish, never to return.

    But what makes me wonder is this: "Germany has long castigated the leadership of the Red Army and Stalin himself for turning a blind eye to the mass rapes carried out by the conquering armies of Zhukov and Rossokovsky when they hit German territory in 1945. But, in reality, it was payback on a massive scale for crimes carried out by men like Sgt. Mueller."

    If the crimes of Stalin can no longer be hidden under the gigantic carpet where they have been swept, if the blood of those millions of victims keeps oozing out, then isn't there going to be an insistent and all-pervasive campaign to excuse them and explain them away?

    So is this article simply the terrible truth, or is it propaganda, or is it a clever mixture of the two?

    How can I know? But it does underline the importance of never letting anything "the world" tells us get us so heated up that we are in danger of doing evil ourselves. How can we ever know if it is telling us the truth?

    The Christian Greek Scriptures have been warning us for over 2,000 years now that "the father of the lie" is in charge of the present system of things on the earth. And how he loves to turn us, the children of Adam, against each other.

    If this article is true, then it was another success for him.

    And did the Stalin regime need any incitement to cruelty, rape and killing? Look what Stalin did in the Ukraine before WW2 even started.

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  11. Gosh, I hope no one thinks that I am whitewashing German Nazi murderers,on the contrary. Still, I believe to understand motives is important in order to keep history from repeating itself. After I have read this,and several other books, I have come to the following conclusions regarding Nazi German crimes-

    1. Some people are psychopaths-see Himmler,Hitler,Hedryich.They are COMPLETELY deprived of empathy-A Polish psychiatrist,Łobaszewski,has written a very interesting book about how political movements (like f.e communism) can turn into organized nightmares,f.e through psychopaths gaining absolute power.This was the case in Germany.

    2. In order to organize a genocide one needs Himmlers (architects),propaganda (dehumanization of a group) and a,uhm,lets call it "task force" (a rather small group of dedicated (more or less) people)-the members of which will find ways to auto-justify their own behaviour (like "Im not as bad as XY" or "I just doing my job".Group pressure,ideology and the likes will see to the rest)

    3. At the end of the war,only a small group was punished.This is completely wrong. Lets take the cases of concentration camps guards.Are they guilty? Of course,understanding why many of them turned that bad does not mean that they should not be punished severely-Still, executing them was completely wrong.Here is why-1. a life as a beast of burden in f.e Polish custody for life would have been in my eyes the approprate harsh sentence for the worst of the worst. 2. Excecuting them made them scapegoats for the rest of the German people. Were the hundreds of journalists punished for their incitement of hate? German policemen for their contribution in f.e catching targeted people? German administrators for organizing the whole thing? Of course not-and,with people like Hoess,Mandl,Grese,Geisler executed and themselves having gotten off scott-free they could feel themselves redeemed-without having to do anything to righten their wrongs. This is,in my humble opinion,the main reason why most Germans today are so very ignorant,an often arrogant, about what has happened in Poland during the German occupation.

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  12. Also,Mr. Peczkis,
    great list-I have ordered some of these books from my libary :-)
    I agree with you-there IS definitively a trend to whitewash German history,and it started much,much earlier. I recommend the books of the respected German historian Goetz Aly, f.e Unser Kampf 68 (there is a Polish translation-its about how the 1968 generation actually did not really give a damn about the Shoah,rather,they were quite comparable to the generation of the 20s) or how ordinary people profited from Hitlers Volksstaat. Also, the German government instrumentalized Auschwitz politically, when they argued the Serbia was going to exterminate the Kosovo Albanians (a lie, but apparently no one cares) and Foreign Minister Fischer (a former hippie) shouted: Nie wieder Auschwitz (Never again Auschwitz). And there were people who are still thinking that Auschwitz is a burden to the Germans....

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  13. Also,Mr. Peczkis,
    great list-I have ordered some of these books from my libary :-)
    I agree with you-there IS definitively a trend to whitewash German history,and it started much,much earlier. I recommend the books of the respected German historian Goetz Aly, f.e Unser Kampf 68 (there is a Polish translation-its about how the 1968 generation actually did not really give a damn about the Shoah,rather,they were quite comparable to the generation of the 20s) or how ordinary people profited from Hitlers Volksstaat. Also, the German government instrumentalized Auschwitz politically, when they argued the Serbia was going to exterminate the Kosovo Albanians (a lie, but apparently no one cares) and Foreign Minister Fischer (a former hippie) shouted: Nie wieder Auschwitz (Never again Auschwitz). And there were people who are still thinking that Auschwitz is a burden to the Germans....

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  14. Correction: The link to the reviewed books about German genocidal crimes against Poles can now be found by clicking on my name in this specific posting.

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  15. I have actually reviewed several works by Gotz Aly. For instance, please click on my name in this specific posting to see how individual Germans, and not only wealthy Germans, profited handsomely from the despoiling of not only Jews but also Slavs.

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  16. If any of these young Germans are still around - and if these transcripts are true, as they well could be - then I would like them to tell us what they feel about it now.

    Only i know when I wake in the early hours - and I have got to that age where you so often do - it is my own many failures of love and my own selfishness that come back to haunt me. I have such regrets.

    I am wondering how you feel if you have done the sort of things they did.

    ReplyDelete

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