Scrapbookpages Blog

March 15, 2014

The late Harry W. Mazel is back in the news

Filed under: Dachau, Germany, Holocaust — Tags: , — furtherglory @ 11:58 am

You can read the latest news about the late Harry W. Mazel at http://www.colorado.edu/news/releases/2014/03/04/momentous-gift-holocaust-archive-cu-boulder-will-draw-scholars-around-world

This quote is from the news article:

The archive is the life work of Harry W. Mazal, a retired businessman from Mexico City who made San Antonio, Texas, his home and became an internationally recognized Holocaust collector and researcher. Working with numerous volunteers, Mazal dedicated his life to creating a vast repository committed to defending the voices and memories of the victims of the Holocaust around the world by promoting scholarly research related to Holocaust studies, Holocaust denial, anti-Semitism and bigotry.

The website of Harry W. Mazel, entitled The Holocaust History Project was one of the first websites that I ever visited when I started studying the Holocaust.

I blogged about Harry W. Mazel on this blog post:  https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/tag/harry-w-mazal/

General Patton’s policy regarding the treatment of German POWs

Filed under: World War II — Tags: , , , — furtherglory @ 10:00 am

A reader of my blog recently made a comment in which he stated that General Patton told his men: “Any man who brings me an SS prisoner will be court Marshalled!”?

I interpret this to mean that General Patton wanted his men to take no prisoners when fighting in battle against Waffen-SS soldiers. Even more explicit, General Patton ordered his men to kill all Waffen-SS soldiers who surrendered.

I have been searching for some verification of this order, but have found nothing.  What I did find in my searching was an article about General Eisenhower and his treatment of German POWs at http://www.rense.com/general46/germ.htm

This quote is from the website cited above:

One month before the end of World War 11, General Eisenhower issued special orders concerning the treatment of German Prisoners and specific in the language of those orders was this statement,

“Prison enclosures are to provide no shelter or other comforts.”

Eisenhower biographer Stephen Ambrose, who was given access to the Eisenhower personal letters, states that he proposed to exterminate the entire German General Staff, thousands of people, after the war.

Eisenhower, in his personal letters, did not merely hate the Nazi Regime, and the few who imposed its will down from the top, but that HE HATED THE GERMAN PEOPLE AS A RACE. It was his personal intent to destroy as many of them as he could, and one way was to wipe out as many prisoners of war as possible.

Of course, that was illegal under International law, so he issued an order on March 10, 1945 and verified by his initials on a cable of that date, that German Prisoners of War be predesignated as “Disarmed Enemy Forces” called in these reports as DEF. He ordered that these Germans did not fall under the Geneva Rules, and were not to be fed or given any water or medical attention. The Swiss Red Cross was not to inspect the camps, for under the DEF classification, they had no such authority or jurisdiction.

This quote from the website cited above is the most important:

Months after the war was officially over, Eisenhower’s special German DEF camps were still in operation forcing the men into confinement, but denying that they were prisoners. As soon as the war was over, General George Patton simply turned his prisoners loose to fend for themselves and find their way home as best they could. Eisenhower was furious, and issued a specific order to Patton, to turn these men over to the DEF camps. Knowing Patton as we do from history, we know that these orders were largely ignored, and it may well be that Patton’s untimely and curious death may have been a result of what he knew about these wretched Eisenhower DEF camps.  […]

General Patton’s Third Army was the only command in the European Theater to release significant numbers of Germans.

Others, such as Omar Bradley and General J.C.H. Lee, Commander of Com Z, tried, and ordered the release of prisoners within a week of the war’s end. However, a SHAEF Order, signed by Eisenhower, countermanded them on May 15th.

I wrote about Eisenhower’s DEF camps on my website at http://www.scrapbookpages.com/EasternGermany/Gotha/