Horrors of War

Auschwitz poster in Berlin, Summer 1945

German Civilians were informd about German atrocities in conquered countries. Transparent explaining number of deaths in Concentration Camp in Oswiecim (Auschwitz) posted  in Neukölln, Hermannstrasse Ecke Warthestrasse on Summer 1945.

In this page you find some basic information about grim life during war including attrocities. Some Allied forces atrocities in Germany took a place. They should be strongly condemned but could not be used as an excuse for German war crimes that were part of official policy of Nazi government. There were also different policy and different attitude in Allied armies. Some Soviet and French colonial troops were the worst. Both Western and Soviet controlled Polish armies were usually very correct.

Documents

First are  documents issued by three armies involved in Berlin siege about treating civilians:

German Barrbarossa Order. In face of “final struggle with Bolshevism” punishment of all war crimes against civilians were practicaly suspended.

Soviet propagandist Ilya Ehrenburg author of the Red Army’s newspaper  “Krasnaya Zviezda” articles an propaganda leaflets distributed among Soviet soldiers. They were in fact not official orders  but they were tolerated, thus accepted by Soviet authorities. Stalin said “There is no need to edit Ehrenburg. Let him write as he pleases.” Molotov told that Ehrenburg “was worth several divisions”. Red Army soldiers loved his texts because he assessed German forces and admitted Soviet sacrifice. He hated Germans: “If you have killed one German, kill another” what was very liked by Soviet soldiers.

Order No 51 of Polish Army High Command about German civilians. Issued 22nd March 1945 after entering pre war German territories, just after capture of Kolobrzeg (Kolberg). In Kolobrzeg Polish Army meet German Volkssturm first time. It was recognised as Armed Force and treaten as POW when captured.

See also Katyn Massacre and German AB-Action in Poland

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