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  1. Martin Antonenko A Fixture

    Ozaritchij: A Wehrmacht extermination camp

    Due to the hopeless military situation in the spring of 1944, the 9th Army of the Nazi Wehrmacht is preparing to withdraw from Belarus.

    The Commander-in-Chief, General Josef Harpe...


    ... issues the order in March 1944 to forcibly recruit and take away all civilians who are able to work in his area of command. They should continue to do forced labor for the Germans and not for the Soviets!

    But what should happen to their relatives who are unable to work (children, the sick and the elderly), who could then no longer take care of themselves?

    Harpe's solution: They should be concentrated in a camp near the Belarusian village of Ozarichij, north of the town of Masyr...:


    The aim of the campaign is "to get rid of or no longer have to take care of people who are sick,
    cripples, old people and women with more than two children under the age of ten and others who are unable to work in all areas of the corps", as stated in the corresponding order.

    On March 12, 1944, the "camp" - in reality an area fenced off with barbed wire in an open field - is set up...:



    There, more than 40,000 civilians are crammed together without any supplies - the action involves the 35th, 36th, 110th, 129th, 134th and 296th German Infantry Divisions as well as the 5th and 20th Panzer Divisions. ..:


    Already on the "transport" to this "camp" - the vast majority of the detainees have to go there on foot! - there are countless murders by members of the Wehrmacht:

    "At least 500 of them, including children, were shot dead by the escorts because they could no longer walk."


    This was not reported by a historian after the war, but was written by the Security Service (SD) of the SS to the Reich Security Main Office in Berlin!

    According to the same SD report, members of the 35th Infantry Division in particular were particularly cruel:
    They shot "often for the slightest reason or without any reason at all, including children (...) even when the internees tried to drink from the swamp water."

    When the Red Army liberated the "camp" on March 19, 1944, they found 9,000 dead and a few survivors there...:



    According to Belarusian data, more than 20,000 civilians were killed there in the short period of time between March 12 and 19!

    Army Commander Harpe was satisfied with the "results" of the Wehrmacht death camp:

    The action "brought considerable relief to the entire battlefield. The residential areas were considerably loosened up and freed up for troop quarters. Food is no longer used for useless eaters. The sources of infection were significantly reduced by deporting those infected with the disease."

    Harpe, who successfully evaded capture by the Red Army, was not harmed after the war!

    He died peacefully in bed in 1968!

    The 35th Infantry Division of the Nazi Wehrmacht is still honored today at its forder home base at Karlsruhe:


    There is no indication on the memorial there that members of the division played a prominent role in this only extermination camp operated by the Wehrmacht during the Nazi era.

    By these historical facts at the latest, the widespread fiction in Germany after the war of the Wehrmacht fighting "cleanly and honorably" as the counterpart to the murderous SS has been refuted!

    At Ozaritchij today a memorial commemorates the murders of the Wehrmacht...:


    Harpe's chief of staff (and deputy) General Johann-Georg Richert...


    ... and one of the corps commanders of the units involved in the murders, General Heinrich Otto Gottfried von Erdmannsdorff...


    ... weren't as lucky as their boss!

    They ended up in Soviet captivity, were tried in Minsk after the war...



    ... sentenced to death on January 29, 1946 - and one day later publicly hanged together with 11 other lower-ranking members of the Wehrmacht in front of more than 10,000 spectators at the Minsk racecourse.

  2. Nap Moderator

    At least some got the justice they fully deserved for this horror

    Cheers Martin


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