Scrapbookpages Blog

May 3, 2017

May 1945 — Germans surrender

Filed under: Germany, Uncategorized, World War II — Tags: — furtherglory @ 10:26 am

Execution of 16 Year Old German Heinz Petry by the US Fire Squad 

We are lucky to have someone commenting on my blog, who served as a German solderer in World War II, and was an eye witnesses to the end of war.  My blog post today includes material from his blog which you can read in full by following the links provided.

The two links are a two part account of HK Stolpmann of those days.  The second link is from his account of his experience on May 9th 1945.  The first link is about the general mistreatment and often execution of German youth at the end of the war.  I have selected a few highlights, but those interested in learning more about those days should definitely follow these links.

http://dachaukz.blogspot.com/2011/03/my-own-surrender-to-3rd-us-army-9th-may.html

Begin quote from the above link:

It was an entirely different position the Allies took when HJ [Hitler Youth] members were captured or surrendered in their original uniform, with their swastika armband on their sleeves….

These boys had no rights under any rules to be treated as POW’s when captured and were faced with summary execution.

End quote

http://dachaukz.blogspot.co.nz/2011/03/sonndorf-pow-camp-to-dachau-kz.html

Begin quote:

The final act was  signed in Berlin together with the Russians in the morning of May the 8th.  At that time my platoon of 15 boys and one Officer, Lieutenant Becker marched towards the German border from within Czechoslovakia in the area of Schuettenhofen.  There was a sort of no-mans land and all troop movements were strictly forbidden, we did not adhere to this order. As we had thrown all our weapons down to comply to Doenitz’s command, except our Lt. who carried his MP38 to protect us to some degree against Czech partisan’s ambushes when [on May 9th 1945] we met the first American soldiers confronting a massive column of tired and dejected Germans that all were trying to avoid capture by the Russians.  I have never seen my Lieutenant ever since.

End quote.

Further down in the same blog post, Stolpmann continues:

Begin quote

At that time we did not know that Eisenhower had issued an order on March 10th 1945 and verified by his initials on a cable of that date, that German Prisoners of War be predesignated as “Disarmed Enemy Forces” or DEF.  Eisenhower  ordered that these Germans did not fall under the Geneva Convention, and were not to be fed or given 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.

End Quote.

Stolpmann remembered about these days in a recent comment on this blog:

…’Unser Führer ist gefallen’ – which means ‘[Our Führer died in combat action’]

Indeed I did find a scrap of newspaper while spending the first days as a POW (DEF) in Sonndorf, which claimed that our beloved leader with the flag in one hand and a rifle in the other died fighting for the glory of our people and the Third Reich. Beside it was one of the first actual accounts of another newsprint that Hitler had committed suicide in his bunker prior to marrying Eva Brown!

I was so disgusted by what I felt was American propaganda that I tore the paper to pieces and held the other one to my chest, proud of my Führer!

So much for brainwashing.

End quote.

3 Comments »

  1. Call it callousness, call it reprisal, call it a policy of hostile neglect: a million Germans taken prisoner by Eisenhower’s armies died in captivity after the surrender.

    Comment by Herbert Stolpmann — May 8, 2017 @ 1:37 am

    • You wrote: “a million Germans taken prisoner by Eisenhower’s armies died in captivity after the surrender”

      I wrote about Eisenhower’s death camps on this blog post,
      https://furtherglory.wordpress.com/2013/01/29/eisenhowers-death-camps-a-stain-on-american-history/

      Comment by furtherglory — May 8, 2017 @ 7:03 am

      • CAMP SONNDORF

        Foll0wing is an extract written by a German Blogger published two years ago, which I translated into English. Although he knew about intimate details about the camp, i can only guess that he was there as a POW.

        As he writes under a Pseudonym his name or any other references are unknown to me as all comments on this website were deleted.

        Exactly 70 years was officially ended the 2nd World War, on May 8, 1945 at 11 pm. On May 7, 1945, Generaloberst Jodl signed the unconditional surrender of the German Reich in Reims at the headquarters of General Eisenhower, Commander-in-Chief of the Allied Forces in Europe.
        The “millennial” Nazi realm sank in a sea of ​​blood and tears. When the weapons finally silenced on May 8, more than 60 million people were dead. Fallen on the front, murdered in concentration camps, burned in bomb nights, died of hunger, cold and violence on the great flight.

        Germany was divided by the Victory Powers in occupation zones: in British, Soviet, French and American. All Bavaria and beyond belonged to the southeast zone, that is, to the American zone, until the foundation of the Federal Republic of Germany in May 1949.

        Near Freyung there existed exactly 70 years ago, since May 1945 a prison administrated by the Amis: P.O.W. Sonndorf (Prisoners of War) briefly called Camp Sonndorf.
        Unfortunately, there is insufficient information about this. Through my interest in the local history I have researched a little myself, so here is my brief presentation:

        After the war was lost there were hundreds of prisoners of war in Germany. Camp Sonndorf was an collection site from the Plattling camp (Bavaria). Ideal for the geographic location on the border with Czechoslovakia, where the Red Army was stationed and the infrastructure in tatters. So the proximity of the city of Freyung, on the main road B12 to Passau and still intact with rail transport to Plattling. Commanding and Contracting officer was Richard E. Fletcher from Iowa, who was responsible for the construction of the camp in May 1945.
        The camp was intended for about 1,300 refugees and home displaced people, but up to 2,000 men and women were accommodated.
        Camp Sonndorf was right next to the B 12, a turn-off to Hinterschmiding. From the village of Sonndorf – Lagerstraße, across the river Saußbach in the direction of Kreuzberg. (This is today’s industrial area for the Bundeswehr). This area was widely confiscated, fenced with barbed wire, while Prisoners using their own standard triangle tent sheets and built huts a the time of evacuation, the SS prisoners being blocked behind meter-high fence, however, many jumped over joining different sections, rremoving their blood group with buring cigrette butts, a certain give-away mark.
        Prisoners arrived in daily growing numbers, including wounded and amputees, perhaps also children’s soldiers of the Hitler Youth, came from all over Europe to give themselves up. The soldiers from southern Europe came mostly from Passau, the Ostfront via Grafenau, then they were divided into so-called sections.

        At first the survival in the camp was very hard, the Americans had perhaps logistical problems, the prisoners did not get food for days. Out of their misery they had eaten grass, e.g. Dumpling soup tasted very bitter. The Geneva Conventions, on human and international law, were also temporarily suspended, the Germans were seen as Disarmed Enemy Forces. Nevertheless, a Feldlazarett (Field Hospital) – across the river was established at the Saußbach. The prisoners were reported to have been treated relatively well by the GIs. (Compared to other camps). Of course there were also hundreds of people who died from hunger, illness or flight (shooting). These dead were stacked and stored in the nearby farmer’s barn, later transported by trucks and buried in a mass grave.
        Some of them, mostly young men, had to work under supervision.
        Mainly in the road construction at Grafenau or Passau, a rebuilding program of the infrastructure which was destroyed during the war.
        The camp lasted for a good three years, some of them were released or moved to another camp. Some came before the court of the others were afterwards free-martial men.

        As a by-note:
        I was detailed to Grafenau to do roadworks although still weak from hunger this place for us 30 men was paradise. We had a cook who obtained meat from the local abattoir and other foodstuff.
        After our transfer to Regensburg this place was outright hell!

        This is waht he extracted from my own narrative:
        …. With Leutnant Becker we marched back with 15 men from Czechoslovakia to the German border. All troops were strictly forbidden and had to succumb to a definite order, the weapons we already laid down. We wanted to avoid a capture by the Russians and gave us up to the American soldiers. We were searched and taken by truck to a small village in the Bavarian Forest. Later we found out that it was Sonnorf, a practically large plowed potato field, obliquely down with a wide meadow towards a river. This was a blessing, with the possibility to wash and have water to drink. As more youths arrived in uniforms, we were all grouped together in so-called sections, mine was section 16. There were no facilities of any kind at Sonndorf, except for an old abandoned farm and barn occupied by the Americans. Older, more experienced soldiers who came from the Russian front began digging a pits immediately and using a tree trunk to make a loo, which was also called the “thunderbolt” (Donner Balken)…..

        Read more at: http://dachaukz.blogspot.de/2011/03/sonndorf-pow-camp-to-dachau-kz.html

        Comment by Herbert Stolpmann — May 9, 2017 @ 10:15 pm


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