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Egorka
01-14-2009, 04:07 PM
At Greek village Kondomari (http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kondomari)on Kreta island a group of German paratroopers was ambushed and several of them got killed by forks and axes.
Two days later, 2-june-1941, they came back and executed all adult males.
The same day in the neighbouring village 300 more locals were executed.

Photographs of the event in Kondomari: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Kondomari_Massacre

Schuultz
01-14-2009, 04:54 PM
So how many victims are we talking?

300 in a different village + how many in the original village?

Also, in the linked article, the author claims that the partisans killed a group of German soldiers in such brutal ways that it enraged the Germans to commit these war crimes.

Any further info on that?

flamethrowerguy
01-15-2009, 02:23 AM
Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (supreme command of the Wehrmacht), May 30 1941:

During the Battle of Crete wounded german soldiers were mutilated in such a brute way which had only occured in this war during the polish campaign so far...with the strictest tribunal the german Wehrmacht will strike upon the responsible troops or the guilty inhabitants.

"Die Bildchronik der Fallschirmtruppe 1935-1945" (Arnold von Roon)

Cretian liberation fighters did not fight with stones only but murdered with hunting weapons in ambushes. They even used international banned dum-dum bullets. Wounded soldiers and those injured after the jump were their usual victims and then often robbed them.

"Sonderauftrag Südost 1940-1945" (Hermann Neubacher)

...terrifyingly mutilated, crucified, impaled, roasted alive...then, in the first moments of horror and wrath there's no stopping the longing for revenge. Who dares to judge the case in calm temper after finding his comrades as bloody stumps because they were sentenced to a slow death?"

However this painting shows the way the partisans of Crete considered their struggle:
3122

Egorka
01-15-2009, 04:47 AM
Nice painting...
Why is that the German paratrooper doesn't fire his submachine gun???
I guess it is not because he did not want to shoot nobody...

Were not German paratroopers tought how to use ordinary objects as weapons? Whould they hessitate to use a stone to crush the enemy skull?

Any way, the death of the ambushed Germans probably (likely) was very terrible.
The punishement was a war crime. A preplanned war crime commited in cold blood.

saffer
01-15-2009, 05:18 AM
Just again showing how perplexing the question of who's right and who's wrong in war. barbarity begets barbarity.

Chevan
01-15-2009, 05:27 AM
Oh my god.
The peoples obviously didn't suspect what will going on.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/39/Bundesarchiv_Bild_101I-166-0525-28%2C_Kreta%2C_Kondomari%2C_Erschie%C3%9Fung_von_Z ivilisten.jpg
This scene reminds me the ethnic execution in Yugoslavia.


During the Battle of Crete wounded german soldiers were mutilated in such a brute way which had only occured in this war during the polish campaign so far...with the strictest tribunal the german Wehrmacht will strike upon the responsible troops or the guilty inhabitants
But how many GErmans were killed and by which exactly barbaric way?

Rising Sun*
01-15-2009, 05:58 AM
Just again showing how perplexing the question of who's right and who's wrong in war. barbarity begets barbarity.

It also shows how interpretations depend upon one's standpoint.

On the Allied side, the Cretans were regarded as enormously courageous by going up against well armed soldiers with only civilian firearms and anything else they could get their hands on.

It's understandable for the German troops to be outraged about extreme actions by Cretans, but this rather denies the Cretans their much more justified outrage about Germans invading their island and their right to resist by whatever means they could. Maybe the Germans should have been grateful that the Cretans weren't an organised and properly equipped military force defending with the same vigour.

I don't have a problem identifying who's wrong in this sort of case. It's always the aggressive invader, in the same way that an armed man who invades my home and starts attacking me or my family is liable to be belted to death with whatever I can get my hands on, if that's what it takes to stop him.

Chevan
01-15-2009, 06:31 AM
I don't have a problem identifying who's wrong in this sort of case. It's always the aggressive invader, in the same way that an armed man who invades my home and starts attacking me or my family is liable to be belted to death with whatever I can get my hands on, if that's what it takes to stop him.
Does your point advocate that the Allies in 1945 were agressors who invide the GErmany, and it was legitime for GErmans to use whatever they can gat into the hands?
The poisoning the water and food includes.

Egorka
01-15-2009, 07:13 AM
barbarity begets barbarity.
Who is exactly arguing against this, may I ask?

Rising Sun*
01-15-2009, 07:18 AM
Does your point advocate that the Allies in 1945 were agressors who invide the GErmany

No, the aggressor in Europe was Germany and the invasion of Germany was necessary to put an end to that aggression and all that followed until Germany surrendered.


and it was legitime for GErmans to use whatever they can gat into the hands?

This raises an interesting question contrasted with the previous one.

Perhaps somewhat inconsistently with my previous answer, I'd say that the answer for German civilians acting independently of the military is probably: Yes.

The fact that Germany started the war would be irrelevant to me as a German citizen in a German town being shelled by the advancing Allies who are trying to kill me. I'd feel like striking back at them and I think I would be justified at a personal level in doing so. And if the bastards had just wiped out my family by shelling my house, I would if I could.

What is right or wrong in international law and in events between nations is utterly irrelevant to the people facing each other on the ground in war, and personal considerations often override the laws of war and so on. As in the Cretan example in this thread.


The poisoning the water and food includes.

Yeah, why not?

Pursuing the last example, Allied artillery has just killed my wife and two children when they shelled my house, along with most other houses in the town even though none of the civilians were offering resistance. The Allies have just destroyed everything that matters to me. I am, as I really am, an unfit man nudging 60 with no chance of doing much damage by taking up arms against the advancing infantry before they kill me, but I am determined to kill and harm as many of the bastards as I can.

Even though the advancing infantry had nothing to do with shelling my home and might even treat me well once they occupy my town, as far as I'm concerned they're all part of the same side who killed my family.

So as they come into the town I wave an American or British flag and I give them food and wine, laced with rat poison. By the time they start feeling sick, I've sent a company or two to their graves.

Sure, their mates are going to work out what happened and hunt me down and kill me if they can find me, but that was going to happen if I took up a rifle and killed only two or three of them before they killed me. At least this way I die having done more damage to them than they deserve, the same as they've done to me and my family, and the same way that Allied bombers have been doing to the major towns, industries, railways, and public utilities in my region for the past few years.

What's wrong with me responding with a bit of indiscriminate death when the Allies come within my range?

(When I consider these situations, I am forced to conclude that, as a pacifist, I am not a very good one. :rolleyes: )

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 07:52 AM
(When I consider these situations, I am forced to conclude that, as a pacifist, I am not a very good one. :rolleyes: )

You sure aren't. :D

The mass execution of the civilians was a war crime - this is a fact, no matter what the motivation of the German soldiers was.

Still, considering the circumstances, it is a lot more understandable than the ethnic cleansing the Germans liked to do to Russian civilians.

Crete isn't very big, and as I read it, the majority of the murders was committed in a certain town, which must have been near the site of the ambushing and killing of the Paratroopers. So the soldiers obviously assumed that those fellas were responsible for it. Knowing the Southern-European temper, I'm sure the Cretans also had absolutely no scruple showing their "discontentment" with the German occupation.

And it's not like the German Military High Command really cared to much about the lawful conduct of war, and they probably thought that the execution of anybody suspected to be a partisan would not only crush/deter resistance, but also boost the morale of the soldiers.

I'm sure as heck that I would want revenge, too, if I saw my comrades slaughtered and tortured to death by an otherwise invisible enemy...

flamethrowerguy
01-15-2009, 08:57 AM
But how many GErmans were killed...

On the quick I don't have any numbers but will look for it.


...and by which exactly barbaric way?

I'd like to refer to my original post here:

...terrifyingly mutilated, crucified, impaled, roasted alive...

Where I come from this would usually considered "barbaric".

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 09:02 AM
Where I come from this would usually considered "barbaric".

I don't think he fully read your post. No need to jump at him ;)

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 09:04 AM
Just again showing how perplexing the question of who's right and who's wrong in war. barbarity begets barbarity.


I'm pretty sure taking people into custody and then massacring them is more than "wrong," it's a war crime....and especially well-photographed one here...

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 09:13 AM
You sure aren't. :D

The mass execution of the civilians was a war crime - this is a fact, no matter what the motivation of the German soldiers was.

Still, considering the circumstances, it is a lot more understandable than the ethnic cleansing the Germans liked to do to Russian civilians.

Crete isn't very big, and as I read it, the majority of the murders was committed in a certain town, which must have been near the site of the ambushing and killing of the Paratroopers. So the soldiers obviously assumed that those fellas were responsible for it. Knowing the Southern-European temper, I'm sure the Cretans also had absolutely no scruple showing their "discontentment" with the German occupation.

And it's not like the German Military High Command really cared to much about the lawful conduct of war, and they probably thought that the execution of anybody suspected to be a partisan would not only crush/deter resistance, but also boost the morale of the soldiers.

I'm sure as heck that I would want revenge, too, if I saw my comrades slaughtered and tortured to death by an otherwise invisible enemy...

Well, I'd like to know the specific Fallschirmjäger gripes about their treatment meted out by Cretan civilians using stone age weapons and ancient firearms....

Was it that they were attacked in the very vulnerable few minutes from which they parachuted down, landed, and were able to collect their weapons? Because the US 82d Airborne would have had cause to massacre a lot of Germans in Normandy if that were the case.

I doubt the Cretan civilian population had very much time to torture anyone. I think it might be more a case of the paratroops setting the tone for their occupation, and being embarrassed about suffering such high casualties in what was ultimately a Pyrrhic victory...

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 09:20 AM
Well, I'd like to know the specific Fallschirmjäger gripes about their treatment meted out by Cretan civilians using stone age weapons and ancient firearms....

Was it that they were attacked in the very vulnerable few minutes from which they parachuted down, landed, and were able to collect their weapons? Because the US 82d Airborne would have had cause to massacre a lot of Germans in Normandy if that were the case.

I doubt the Cretan civilian population had very much time to torture anyone. I think it might be more a case of the paratroops setting the tone for their occupation, and being embarrassed about suffering such high casualties in what was ultimately a Pyrrhic victory...

You didn't read flamethrowerguy's post, did you? They were not only killed in quite some horrific ways, but tortured to death, and their bodies mutilated.
I also don't think this happened immediately during the invasion, but rather during the time of occupation, IIRC?

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 09:34 AM
You didn't read flamethrowerguy's post, did you? They were not only killed in quite some horrific ways, but tortured to death, and their bodies mutilated.
I also don't think this happened immediately during the invasion, but rather during the time of occupation, IIRC?


Actually I did, though admittedly scanned over it quickly. I have to say that I'm pretty skeptical of such claims. Especially since they sound little more "horrific" than any battlefield situation where the Germans, or paratroops in general, suffered heavy casualties...

There were cases in Western Europe where US paratroops claim to have found their dead castrated --with their balls in their mouths-- and they typically blamed the SS. I'm also aware of a situation where a US paratrooper came up to a glider that had been severed by a German booby-trap pole wire to find everyone inside had been decapitated...

But just for the sake of argument, if a German soldier that was "wounded" and hacked to death by farm implements would appear "mutilated." But then, so would a "wounded" man hit by an artillery shell and they really would have had a hard time discerning who was killed after they were wounded or who was just killed by a garden hoe and looked really messy...

And for your last point, how long would Fallschirmjäger units been used as occupation troops on Crete? And how did Crete townspeople, barely organized enough to be called partisans, come into custody of wounded German paratroops if the island was under their control and occupation? :confused:

I think they were trying to send a message, and the photos show that this was anything but spontaneous outrage. It seems far too calculated and planned...

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 10:11 AM
Actually I did, though admittedly scanned over it quickly. I have to say that I'm pretty skeptical of such claims. Especially since they sound little more "horrific" than any battlefield situation where the Germans, or paratroops in general, suffered heavy casualties...

There were cases in Western Europe where US paratroops claim to have found their dead castrated --with their balls in their mouths-- and they typically blamed the SS. I'm also aware of a situation where a US paratrooper came up to a glider that had been severed by a German booby-trap pole wire to find everyone inside had been decapitated...

But just for the sake of argument, if a German soldier that was "wounded" and hacked to death by farm implements would appear "mutilated." But then, so would a "wounded" man hit by an artillery shell and they really would have had a hard time discerning who was killed after they were wounded or who was just killed by a garden hoe and looked really messy...

And for your last point, how long would Fallschirmjäger units been used as occupation troops on Crete? And how did Crete townspeople, barely organized enough to be called partisans, come into custody of wounded German paratroops if the island was under their control and occupation? :confused:

I think they were trying to send a message, and the photos show that this was anything but spontaneous outrage. It seems far too calculated and planned...

Ok, here's a scenario that could work:

It's the first few days of the occupation, the Allied military forces have been defeated, and the Germans start to occupy the cities.

A squad/group of paratroopers is sent on a patrol to look for any more surrendering soldiers/enemy placements. On their patrol, they get ambushed by townspeople (partisans), and killed/wounded. Out of rage and avenging their friends/family/comrades who died during the actual invasion, they mutilate the bodies of the dead and torture the wounded, eventually killing them, too. If it was just reprisal or whether they were trying to send a message is relatively unimportant.
A few hours later, a bigger squad/group of Germans is sent to look for the missing paratroopers, finding them in the mutilated and tortured way the partisans left them. They report it to their superiors, who are outraged at not only the murder of the soldiers, but also the mutilation. They decide that it is unacceptable for them to let partisans walk around and kill their soldiers, and because they have no way of finding out who actually did it, they decide to make an example.
They round up all of the men in the village nearest to the killing, and have them executed. At the same time, paratroopers all over the (small) island have already heard of the killings, and are equally enraged at the treatment of their comrades. They round up anybody who looks suspicious to them, and kill them, some get drunk and randomly kill Cretans.

As to differing between getting killed by an artillery shell/explosive and stones/cutting/stabbing weapons, here are some assumptions:

-I doubt that the partisans would take the bloody stones with them, so you could see them lying around all over the place.

-Cutting and stabbing wounds look - to my limited knowledge - quite different from explosive wounds.

-Under mutilations, I understand things like cutting off penises, ears, noses, eyes, fingers, tongues and other gruesome things. I don't know if/what exactly they did to qualify their treatment of the dead as mutilations, but I'm sure they wouldn't be things you see in a common combat scenario.

-Cretan partisans didn't have artillery;)

saffer
01-15-2009, 10:33 AM
Who is exactly arguing against this, may I ask?

Not with you - please explain for a dunderhead

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 10:42 AM
Ok, here's a scenario that could work:

It's the first few days of the occupation, the Allied military forces have been defeated, and the Germans start to occupy the cities.

Um, the photos were taken on the 2nd of June. The Battle of Crete only ended to day prior according to Wiki.


A squad/group of paratroopers is sent on a patrol to look for any more surrendering soldiers/enemy placements. On their patrol, they get ambushed by townspeople (partisans), and killed/wounded. Out of rage and avenging their friends/family/comrades who died during the actual invasion, they mutilate the bodies of the dead and torture the wounded, eventually killing them, too. If it was just reprisal or whether they were trying to send a message is relatively unimportant.

So a squad of well armed German paratroops carrying Schmeisser submachine guns, Mauser rifles, and probably an MG-34 --and possibly other weapons typically giving them higher organic firepower than the typical Heer unit-- were cut off and ambushed by townspeople? The day after the final organized Allied resistance is considered to have ended?

Maybe the soldiers should have massacred their own idiot officer(s) who gave the orders for a small unit to enter an unsecured town?


A few hours later, a bigger squad/group of Germans is sent to look for the missing paratroopers, finding them in the mutilated and tortured way the partisans left them. They report it to their superiors, who are outraged at not only the murder of the soldiers, but also the mutilation. They decide that it is unacceptable for them to let partisans walk around and kill their soldiers, and because they have no way of finding out who actually did it, they decide to make an example.
They round up all of the men in the village nearest to the killing, and have them executed. At the same time, paratroopers all over the (small) island have already heard of the killings, and are equally enraged at the treatment of their comrades. They round up anybody who looks suspicious to them, and kill them, some get drunk and randomly kill Cretans.

Or more likely, they found the festering bodies of fallen Fallschirmjäger that were killed during the battle and made quite a few assumptions...


As to differing between getting killed by an artillery shell/explosive and stones/cutting/stabbing weapons, here are some assumptions:

-I doubt that the partisans would take the bloody stones with them, so you could see them lying around all over the place.

-Cutting and stabbing wounds look - to my limited knowledge - quite different from explosive wounds.

So soldiers that use means other than bullets and explosives to kill deserve to be massacred? What about the cliche of the soldier swinging his entrenching tool in brutal hand-to-hand combat? Or the relatively rare use of the bayonet? Stones, crude firearms, and farm implements are certainly not banned by the Geneva Convention...

The soldiers they found could just have conceivably been laying on the battlefield for a week, decomposing in the Spring sun...


-Under mutilations, I understand things like cutting off penises, ears, noses, eyes, fingers, tongues and other gruesome things. I don't know if/what exactly they did to qualify their treatment of the dead as mutilations, but I'm sure they wouldn't be things you see in a common combat scenario.

-Cretan partisans didn't have artillery;)

IIRC, but there were some heavier arms carried by the local Crete populace that were composed of militia. But then, it's all hearsay. We have photos of German paratroops (who suffered heavy casualties and almost certainly would have been defeated had the Commonwealth defenders had had better communications and transport) and no said pics of Cretan atrocities - which almost certainly would have taken place during battle as it ended officially the day before.

I think you're reaching here. These were revenge killings for the locals uprising, not for what they used or did to German wounded...

saffer
01-15-2009, 10:46 AM
I'm pretty sure taking people into custody and then massacring them is more than "wrong," it's a war crime....and especially well-photographed one here...

I'm not saying it's not a war crime, but i'm also saying slicing up defenseless, wounded soldiers is also a war crime. I'm not apportioning blame or trying to justify either action, all i'm saying is that in war the lines between right and wrong can be very wavey. Once again you need to be able to put yourself in each protagonists shoes to try and understand their actions. Yes the Parras were the invaders but I bet they never saw themselves as such. I bet the American troops in Iraq don't feel like invaders. I bet if an American platoon was found horribly mutilated in Iraq - there would some revenge dished out.

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 10:51 AM
I'm not saying it's not a war crime, but i'm also saying slicing up defenseless, wounded soldiers is also a war crime. I'm not apportioning blame or trying to justify either action, all i'm saying is that in war the lines between right and wrong can be very wavey. Once again you need to be able to put yourself in each protagonists shoes to try and understand their actions. Yes the Parras were the invaders but I bet they never saw themselves as such. I bet the American troops in Iraq don't feel like invaders. I bet if an American platoon was found horribly mutilated in Iraq - there would some revenge dished out.

Haha, saffer, you're a bit late to the party, aren't you? We're long past this original argument, please don't bring it back. :D

Ivaylo
01-15-2009, 10:55 AM
war crime is a war crime and it need to be punished no matter of your allied view of point of heroes that defend their homes and another statements like that cause the soviets did many killings of the same time in the name of "liberation" including civilians with bare hands . And actually in this war expecially there were no rules expecially after Stalingrad , so it was common practice to do such brutal acts by any side no matter if fighting for high ideals ( such big ideals always serve as hiding place for the bad things hiding behind that for example the Crusaders with their high ideal of christianity and "liberation" of the Holy places ) or simply fighting for the great german reich .

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 11:10 AM
Um, the photos were taken on the 2nd of June. The Battle of Crete only ended to day prior according to Wiki.

I'm sure that before it officially ended, some areas would have already been "pacified"?


So a squad of well armed German paratroops carrying Schmeisser submachine guns, Mauser rifles, and probably an MG-34 --and possibly other weapons typically giving them higher organic firepower than the typical Heer unit-- were cut off and ambushed by townspeople? The day after the final organized Allied resistance is considered to have ended?

Maybe the soldiers should have massacred their own idiot officer(s) who gave the orders for a small unit to enter an unsecured town?

True, this does sound pretty dumb. But if enough people had been involved, an unsuspecting troop surely could have been killed quickly enough by Militia before they had any real chance to react? Maybe some were actually already wounded and looking for a field hospital/their unit?


Or more likely, they found the festering bodies of fallen Fallschirmjäger that were killed during the battle and made quite a few assumptions...

Possible, but don't you think soldiers should be able to differ between rotting bodies and mutilated ones?


So soldiers that use means other than bullets and explosives to kill deserve to be massacred? What about the cliche of the soldier swinging his entrenching tool in brutal hand-to-hand combat? Or the relatively rare use of the bayonet? Stones, crude firearms, and farm implements are certainly not banned by the Geneva Convention...

I'm not saying that it was the weaponry used to kill them, that infuriated the soldiers, but rather what was (possibly) done to the soldiers after wards (the mutilations).


The soldiers they found could just have conceivably been laying on the battlefield for a week, decomposing in the Spring sun...

Again, shouldn't experienced soldiers be able to tell the difference between decomposition and mutilation?


IIRC, but there were some heavier arms carried by the local Crete populace that were composed of militia. But then, it's all hearsay. We have photos of German paratroops (who suffered heavy casualties and almost certainly would have been defeated had the Commonwealth defenders had had better communications and transport) and no said pics of Cretan atrocities - which almost certainly would have taken place during battle as it ended officially the day before.

Again, maybe it happened in a pacified area? And also, I think the Germans automatically assumed that it must have been partisans simply because of the mutilations. The British soldiers had fought the Germans, but they would have had absolutely no real incentive to do this to the German dead/wounded. Partisans and militia would be more likely to do something like that, because they would take the invasion of their home a lot more personal, obviously.


I think you're reaching here. These were revenge killings for the locals uprising, not for what they used or did to German wounded...

Oh, I'm definitely making nothing but assumptions here, but so are you with your last sentence, aren't you?

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 11:36 AM
I'm not saying it's not a war crime, but i'm also saying slicing up defenseless, wounded soldiers is also a war crime.

Um, my point is that this was a severe exaggeration on the part of the Germans. See this parallel thread at AxisHistory. (http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=30297&sid=c5ea7cf6a64e3e9d87c6a1da0109dd73) Even their warning plaque indicates that it was a military "ambush" of 25 paratroops.


The famous 'sign of Kandanos',still preserved in Crete..."in retribution for the bestial murder of a paratroop platoon and half an engineer platoon by armed men and women in ambush."


Irregardless of the "slicing up of soldiers" which is hearsay, there was an official, sanctioned policy to punish the Cretan populace for supporting the British Commonwealth forces irregardless of particular outrages:


"When Crete was taken in late May [1941], similar policies [reprisal actions] were introduced. Outraged by the part the islanders had played in resisting the invasion and attacking German paratroopers, General Kurt Student, commander of the XI Air Corps, ordered 'Revenge Operations', and explained to his troops what these were in terms that left no room for ambiguity: '1) Shootings; 2) Forced Levies; 3) Burning down villages; 4) Estermination (Ausrottung) of the male population of the entire region'. What these instructions led to was captured on film by Franz-Peter Weixler, who photographed an ad hoc firing party shooting the men of Kondomari in cold blood in the olive groves outside their village on 2 June. In Student's words: 'All operations are to be carried out with great speed, leaving aside all formalities and certainly dispensing with special courts.... These are not meant for beasts and murderers.' Greek sources estimate that 2,000 civilians were shot on Crete at this time. This figure is probably exaggerated; but we do know that the village of Kandanos was razed to the ground as a warning, and that large numbers of villagers were summarily shot not only in Kondomari but also in in Alikianos and elsewhere." (Mark Mazower Inside Hitler's Greece , 1993).

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


I'm not apportioning blame or trying to justify either action, all i'm saying is that in war the lines between right and wrong can be very wavey. Once again you need to be able to put yourself in each protagonists shoes to try and understand their actions. Yes the Parras were the invaders but I bet they never saw themselves as such. I bet the American troops in Iraq don't feel like invaders.

Um, the massacre of 300 unarmed civilians in response to a legitimate act of resistance and a "military ambush" is far more gauling...

Do we massacre soldiers now for ambushes? And where is the actual "proof" of widespread mutilation? If 25 Germans were hit in an ambush, then most of them probably died fairly quickly and the only way this could have taken place was if the Germans were tied down in heavy fighting which indicates a legitimate battle...

This was revenge, but not for "mutilations." It was revenge for resistance plain and simple...


I bet if an American platoon was found horribly mutilated in Iraq - there would some revenge dished out.

This has happened. And they were tried for War Crimes...

Nickdfresh
01-15-2009, 11:51 AM
I'm sure that before it officially ended, some areas would have already been "pacified"?


Apparently not the one we're discussing...


True, this does sound pretty dumb. But if enough people had been involved, an unsuspecting troop surely could have been killed quickly enough by Militia before they had any real chance to react? Maybe some were actually already wounded and looking for a field hospital/their unit?

I think it was stated to have been a recce in force...


Possible, but don't you think soldiers should be able to differ between rotting bodies and mutilated ones?

Or maybe the allegations were largely inventions or exaggerations in order to increase the bile of the German paratroops to not question their directives?


I'm not saying that it was the weaponry used to kill them, that infuriated the soldiers, but rather what was (possibly) done to the soldiers after wards (the mutilations).

The majority were probably dead even if they were mutilated, and even so, it was 25 soldiers in battle to 300 or so afterward...


Again, shouldn't experienced soldiers be able to tell the difference between decomposition and mutilation?

I'm not sure what always constitutes mutilation. What I'm saying that even if the Germans had been killed "honorably" by Greek militia, the town would have largely had the same fate. It was the fact they resisted fiercely, not HOW they chose to resist...

This would be indicated in all the cases where the Heer, Luftwaffe ground forces, and SS committed reprisal killings for even guerrilla ambushes and actions deemed legitimate by any standard...


Again, maybe it happened in a pacified area? And also, I think the Germans automatically assumed that it must have been partisans simply because of the mutilations. The British soldiers had fought the Germans, but they would have had absolutely no real incentive to do this to the German dead/wounded. Partisans and militia would be more likely to do something like that, because they would take the invasion of their home a lot more personal, obviously.

I think that's the point. The Germans expected it to be pacified and it wasn't to their chagrin. And again, since when was the mutilation of German troops a prerequisite for their reprisal killings from France to the inner areas of the Soviet Union?


Oh, I'm definitely making nothing but assumptions here, but so are you with your last sentence, aren't you?

Maybe, but mine are far more supported by evidence and precedent. Aren't they?

There are numerous accounts of Fallschirmjäger allegedly killing US Ranger wounded at Cisterna in order to force a surrender. Or what about the massacre of Belgian civilians (by the SS) simply in order to spite US engineers blowing bridges during the Battle of the Bulge?

Need I go into German reprisal policies that didn't involve accusations of "bestial mutilations" of their wounded or dead?

Chevan
01-15-2009, 01:18 PM
I don't think he fully read your post. No need to jump at him ;)

Don't need to answer for your countryman ,mr Schuultz , by such way.
I've read the flamethrowerguy's post enough attentively.
But i did wish to verify some details.
The few phrases, mentioned in post , "terrifyingly mutilated, crucified, impaled, roasted alive... " is bit...vague, becouse such "occasions" were MORE them REGULAR for WHOLE Eastern/Balcan Front.
I know a dozen stories when Germans executed the Red Army wounded soldiers or treated them to death via famine,fire or simply leaved them alone to die without any medical help.And wise versa- the Red Army soldiers treated and executed the GErmans civils very often in 1945.
Sometimes there ( in the East) were occured the such terrible things that the "mutilation of 25 German soldiers in Crete" looks like the childish play on sand.You know what i'm talking about.
Sorry for cynical metaphor.

Chevan
01-15-2009, 01:26 PM
Need I go into German reprisal policies that didn't involve accusations of "bestial mutilations" of their wounded or dead?

I do agre with Nick, actualy the occupants often justified their behaviour and "repressive actions" by the crimes , commited by the local population.
It was so familiar in Ukraine and Belorussia, where there were a special order to SS and Police to execute 50-100 "communists" ( mostly local peasants) for every one German soldier, killed by partisan.Some peoples might doubt that those German were really killed by "barbaric" way.But not me.

Chevan
01-15-2009, 01:59 PM
What is right or wrong in international law and in events between nations is utterly irrelevant to the people facing each other on the ground in war, and personal considerations often override the laws of war and so on. As in the Cretan example in this thread.

Sadly ,this just prove that the Huge's "Rules of War" is nothing but cynical empty papers.
Both you and me might turn to be the real beasts if there would be the real war.



Yeah, why not?

Pursuing the last example, Allied artillery has just killed my wife and two children when they shelled my house, along with most other houses in the town even though none of the civilians were offering resistance. The Allies have just destroyed everything that matters to me. I am, as I really am, an unfit man nudging 60 with no chance of doing much damage by taking up arms against the advancing infantry before they kill me, but I am determined to kill and harm as many of the bastards as I can.

Even though the advancing infantry had nothing to do with shelling my home and might even treat me well once they occupy my town, as far as I'm concerned they're all part of the same side who killed my family.

So as they come into the town I wave an American or British flag and I give them food and wine, laced with rat poison. By the time they start feeling sick, I've sent a company or two to their graves.

Sure, their mates are going to work out what happened and hunt me down and kill me if they can find me, but that was going to happen if I took up a rifle and killed only two or three of them before they killed me. At least this way I die having done more damage to them than they deserve, the same as they've done to me and my family, and the same way that Allied bombers have been doing to the major towns, industries, railways, and public utilities in my region for the past few years.

What's wrong with me responding with a bit of indiscriminate death when the Allies come within my range?

You've portrayed the too ideal picture mate.
Indeed even if you would kill the couple of enemy soldiers or poisoned few of them by your unfair rat poison - the rest migh be pissed off , then round up all you family, your childrens and your old parents, then PUBLICALLY EXECUTE them ALL ( PLUS optionaly 50-70 mens from your street) right near the your sheling house.
Say, it wasn't real?
It was REAL in ww2.It was everywhere on occuped territories.
It was called "anti-partisan tactic".


(When I consider these situations, I am forced to conclude that, as a pacifist, I am not a very good one. :rolleyes: )
But you are very good michine-gunner:D

Egorka
01-15-2009, 03:33 PM
Oh, I'm definitely making nothing but assumptions here, but so are you with your last sentence, aren't you?
Maybe, but mine are far more supported by evidence and precedent. Aren't they?

There are numerous accounts of Fallschirmjäger allegedly killing US Ranger wounded at Cisterna in order to force a surrender. Or what about the massacre of Belgian civilians (by the SS) simply in order to spite US engineers blowing bridges during the Battle of the Bulge?

Need I go into German reprisal policies that didn't involve accusations of "bestial mutilations" of their wounded or dead?
What happened in Kondomari is as old as armed conflicts self - the guilt and punishement is trown upon the local people in whose domain the ambush happened.

I do not know for sure if the Germans were really mutilated and tortured (possible), but what I do know is that neither death nor tortur was a necessary prerequisity for such broad repraisals.

My granddad mentiones in his memoirs and quotes an order that was made public in Odessa on the 7th of November 1941, 3 weeks after town of Odessa was occupied by German and Rumanian forces:

paragraph 2
All inhabitants of this territory are to be responsible with their lifes and the lifes of their families for any damage caused by saboteurs to any military property or materials belonging to the Rumanian or allied forces.

paragraph 3
For any damage, cutting and theft of telephone, telegraph or electrical wires, all local inhabitants living around the point of damage will be executed.

paragraph 4
The house inhabitants and the yardmen are to be responsible with their lifes for incidents of disappearence, damage or destruction to the military materials, vehicles, equipment and other state property, which is placed on their property (in the building, storages, factories) as well as on adjacent areas: sidewalks, roads, squares and vacant lots.

Schuultz
01-15-2009, 06:42 PM
paragraph 2
All inhabitants of this territory are to be responsible with their lifes and the lifes of their families for any damage caused by saboteurs to any military property or materials belonging to the Rumanian or allied forces.

paragraph 3
For any damage, cutting and theft of telephone, telegraph or electrical wires, all local inhabitants living around the point of damage will be executed.

paragraph 4
The house inhabitants and the yardmen are to be responsible with their lifes for incidents of disappearence, damage or destruction to the military materials, vehicles, equipment and other state property, which is placed on their property (in the building, storages, factories) as well as on adjacent areas: sidewalks, roads, squares and vacant lots.

I'm pretty sure these regulations were quite common in all areas occupied by Axis forces.
It took quite some bravery/ruthlessness for the partisans to oppose them anyway...

flamethrowerguy
01-16-2009, 01:55 AM
I'm pretty sure these regulations were quite common in all areas occupied by Axis forces.
...and not only there! Mind No. 5 in particular.
3125


It took quite some bravery/ruthlessness for the partisans to oppose them anyway...
Because it was part of the plan. The partisans knew that their action would cause german measures against the civil population. These measures again fueled hatred against the opressor and caused another increment to the partisan movement.

Egorka
01-16-2009, 03:08 AM
can you please translate the leaflet, please. I have an idea but not more than that.

Regarding the second point, that would be completely true If ALL of the partisans were not local people, like special forces and such. But many of them were indeed locals.
Especially in case of Creta.

Chevan
01-16-2009, 03:52 AM
Yeah we would like to see the english translation of that leaflet, if you please flamethrowerguy?

Rising Sun*
01-16-2009, 05:46 AM
Sadly ,this just prove that the Huge's "Rules of War" is nothing but cynical empty papers.

I think they're very well-intentioned rather than cynical. The cynicism is in the disregard that some people and some nations have for them.

The problem isn't with the laws of war (a somewhat absurd concept in its own right) any more than the problem in criminal law is that it doesn't stop some people breaking it.

Better to have good laws which some people break than a lawless world where everybody can do whatever they want, with no consequences.

The difficulty with all forms of international law is that, unlike state laws, there is no police force and court system to enforce them.


Both you and me might turn to be the real beasts if there would be the real war.

You probably wouldn't as your Lada wouldn't get you to the recruiting depot before the war was over :D, but I expect that in certain circumstances I might be capable of things that, sitting here and not being in those circumstances, I condemn and which would be war crimes and utterly immoral. But it wouldn't be anything that probably millions of otherwise decent men did during WWII in various armed forces.


You've portrayed the too ideal picture mate.
Indeed even if you would kill the couple of enemy soldiers or poisoned few of them by your unfair rat poison - the rest migh be pissed off , then round up all you family, your childrens and your old parents, then PUBLICALLY EXECUTE them ALL ( PLUS optionaly 50-70 mens from your street) right near the your sheling house.
Say, it wasn't real?
It was REAL in ww2.It was everywhere on occuped territories.
It was called "anti-partisan tactic".

It was certainly real.

The reasons my little fantasy didn't happen too often were that, first, the Allied troops didn't engage in the same sort of collective punishment and extermination that the Nazis and Japanese did so they didn't engender the same response as typified by the partisans and, second, in the case of people subjected to Nazi and Japanese punishments there weren’t too many left to respond violently and even if they were they usually had no means to do so.

But, applying my fantasy to your comments, if I’ve just been enraged by the destruction of everything that matters to me, am I going to worry about the possible reprisals upon others later or just focus on hurting the people I hold responsible for it?

If I know that reprisals affecting a lot more people are likely I might decide not to do anything, but if I don’t know that or I just don’t care because I am so focused on my own revenge then I will probably try to kill as many of them as I can. Maybe there and then in a suicidal effort or, as many did as a result of similar experiences, by becoming a partisan.


But you are very good michine-gunner:D

Yes, I once killed a derelict car body, which was behaving suspiciously by just lying there in an obvious ambush position, on a tank range before it could fire back. ;) This is what kept Australia safe in 1970. :D

Schuultz
01-16-2009, 10:09 AM
Translation of the Leaflet posted by FTG:

REGULATION!
The French occupying force instates the following regulations:

1. Between 5pm and 7am, nobody may be outside his home.

2. Until Friday, April 27th 1945, at noon, 12 o'clock, all stabbing, cutting, fire[arms] and blunt weapons - including Hunting Rifles - have to be brought alongside their ammunition to the Police Departments, as well as any Radios or Photo-cameras.
The above mentioned objects are to be marked with the Name and address of the Owner.
Every household is responsible for the weaponry and ammunition found in its home.

3. Bicycling is banned, as well as private vehicular and motorbike traffic.

4. Telephone conversations are only allowed through the local network, long distance calls are banned. Any telephone conversations will be monitored for its content.

5. Any hostile actions against the occupying force will lead to harsh retaliation, for example:
-Death Penalty
-Shooting of Hostages
-Burning down of buildings out of which shots were fired
-Also the burning down of any buildings in the vicinity.

Konstanz, the 26th of April 1945

The Colonel and City Commander

flamethrowerguy
01-16-2009, 10:33 AM
Yeah we would like to see the english translation of that leaflet, if you please flamethrowerguy?

I admit I was too lazy and hoped for Schuultz to do it.:D

Schuultz
01-16-2009, 11:32 AM
I admit I was too lazy and hoped for Schuultz to do it.:D

I feel so used... :(

:mrgreen:

Nickdfresh
01-16-2009, 11:35 AM
...and not only there! Mind No. 5 in particular.
3125


Because it was part of the plan. The partisans knew that their action would cause german measures against the civil population. These measures again fueled hatred against the opressor and caused another increment to the partisan movement.


Or in the case of the French Maquis, turned them from the conduct of usually ineffectual pin***** attacks to intelligence gathering, which greatly eased the Allied advance and reduced casualties...