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August 16, 1941

Discussion in '"Today in History", Literature & Media Review' started by Martin Antonenko, Aug 16, 2022.

  1. Martin Antonenko A Fixture

    Prisoners of war are declared "traitors to the motherland"...!

    On August 16, 1941, the High Command of the Red Army (actually Stalin himself, of course!)...


    ... the notorious Order No. 270 "On cases of cowardice and voluntary transfer to captivity and measures to prevent these acts".


    The order states that any soldier who withdraws from the front line without an order can be shot immediately without special circumstances - which happens in tens of thousands of cases...:


    In addition, through Order No. 270, without exception, all Red Army soldiers who have become prisoners of war are declared “traitors to the motherland” and “deserters”!

    The Red Army soldiers are also ordered to continue fighting to the death, even under hopeless circumstances.

    The families of soldiers who surrender "against orders" or are otherwise taken prisoner are immediately deprived of all state support (e.g. food allocations) - they also receive frequent visits from the NKVD...

    The order is signed by Stalin, Molotov and Marshals Voroshilov, Budyonny and Tymoshenko...


    ... and it is expressly ordered that Order No. 270 - here the first page of the specially printed version...


    ... must be read out at all soldiers of each unit!


    Among other things, this order will be fatal to the hundreds of thousands of Red Army soldiers who survived German captivity.

    Between 1941 and 1945, 5.7 million Soviet soldiers will end up in German captivity.





    The conditions in these "Russian camps" and in the forced labor are incomparably worse than for prisoners of other nations!



    3.3 million Red Army soldiers perish in captivity...:


    Here, in 1945, half-starved prisoners of war in the Dörverden powder factory (near Bremen) beg their liberators for bread...:

    For the just 1,836,000 liberated soldiers, misery continues as they now face months of interrogation, investigation and repression under Order No. 270.

    16-17 percent of them immediately end up in penal battalions, about the same number in penal camps - that's a third of them!

    The mortality rate is very high for both of them!

    The rest will not be punished directly, but will face lifelong harassment as they are classified as "political suspects," which will be noted in their files.

    For example, they are deliberately disadvantaged when looking for a job and the allocation of apartments and cannot become a member of the Communist Party (or are fired from the party if they were already a member).

    Order No. 270 will not be repealed until June 1952.
  2. Nap A Fixture

    These poor soldiers didn't stand a chance despite fighting in such harsh conditions, captured in the same conditions , destroyed by mother Russia

  3. Martin64 A Fixture

    not to forget: significant numbers of these liberated POW`s were returned to the Soviet Union against their wishes by the Allies!

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