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Penal Battilions Did They Exist

Article about: Hi guys , a mate of mine is a mad buckle collector , we were talking the other night about these Penal Battilion Belt Buckles , i found a bit of info on another forum regarding these and the

  1. #1

    Default Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Hi guys , a mate of mine is a mad buckle collector , we were talking the other night about these Penal Battilion Belt Buckles , i found a bit of info on another forum regarding these and there history . It seems the vast majority of input was of the opinion these battilons did not exist .It was stated that these buckles were produced shortly after the war ended , has anyone got any history on these buckles and evidence of the penal battilons , did they realy exist , cheers Raymond
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Buckles i can't tell you about. But Penal battalions did exist & there are award docs to penal batts. floating around. Mine clearing was a favourite. Stewy S

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    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Thanks Stewy , i have heard also of the mine clearing duties these guys had as well as other hash tasks , as the story goes not many survived .
    Interesting you point out about award documents in existence , one of these would be proof beond doubt , i hadnt heard of these at all , thanks for your input , cheers Raymond

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    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    A Discussion on SS Fallschirmjager Btl 500 / 600 some of whom were soldiers from Penal units ,

    http://warrelics.eu/forum/history-re...egiment-10572/

    cheers

    Paul
    The gates of hell were opened and we accepted the invitation to enter" 26/880 Lance Sgt, Edward Dyke. 26th Bn Northumberland Fusiliers , ( 3rd Tyneside Irish )

    1st July 1916

    Thought shall be the harder , heart the keener,
    Courage the greater as our strength faileth.
    Here lies our leader ,in the dust of his greatness.
    Who leaves him now , be damned forever.
    We who are old now shall not leave this Battle,
    But lie at his feet , in the dust with our leader

    House Carles at the Battle of Hastings

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    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Thank you Paul , very interesting links , i think it is fair to say they did exist , quite a subduged subject in third richt history , cheers Raymond

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    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Quote by ironcross1 View Post
    Thanks Stewy , i have heard also of the mine clearing duties these guys had as well as other hash tasks , as the story goes not many survived .
    Interesting you point out about award documents in existence , one of these would be proof beond doubt , i hadnt heard of these at all , thanks for your input , cheers Raymond
    Hi Ray,i've sent you a PM. Stewy S

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    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist


  8. #8

    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    The german author sven hassel writes in most of his books about penal regiments although based on fictional people he seems to write with a fair bit of personal insight into the 27th armoured (penal)regiment the books are well worth a read i have them all please feel free to blow me out of the water as a newb on here but i was just passing and saw this thread all the best Rob

  9. #9

    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Quote by robin59 View Post
    The german author sven hassel writes in most of his books about penal regiments although based on fictional people he seems to write with a fair bit of personal insight into the 27th armoured (penal)regiment the books are well worth a read i have them all please feel free to blow me out of the water as a newb on here but i was just passing and saw this thread all the best Rob
    I think the Dirlewanger units were semi- penal:

    On 14 June 1940, the Wilddiebkommando Oranienburg (Poacher's Command Oranienburg) was formed. On 24 June 1940, Himmler admitted Dirlewanger into the Waffen-SS to be commander of this newly formed unit. By July 1940, the unit numbered 84 men.

    Initially a unit of convicted poachers, it became over time composed of increasing numbers of common criminals. In contrast to those who served in the German penal battalions for minor offences, the volunteers sent to the "Dirlewanger" were convicted of major crimes which would be considered criminal in civilian courts. While the theory was that service in the "Dirlewanger" would rehabilitate the criminals, it in fact provided them with the ability to continue committing criminal acts with no repercussions. The actions of the battalion was the subject of several complaints by high-ranking Wehrmacht officers, but these went unnoticed or were ignored.

    As the news spread of the new formation, hundreds of concentration camp prisoners applied for service with the unit. By September 1940, the formation numbered over 9000 men. With the influx of criminals, the emphasis on poachers was now lost, and those convicted of other more severe crimes, including assault, burglary and rape joined the unit. Accordingly, the unit name was changed to Sonderkommando "Dr. Dirlewanger" (Special Command "Dr. Dirlewanger"). As the unit strength continued to grow, the unit was placed under the command of the SS-Totenkopfverbände (the formation responsible for the administration of the concentration camps) and it was redesignated SS-Sonderbatallion "Dirlewanger" (it became a Waffen-SS unit again in the late 1944).

    In January 1942, the unit was authorised to recruit from Russian and Ukrainian volunteers to rebuild its strength. In its final phase, Dirlewanger's men came to include, besides common criminals, increasing numbers of political prisoners, homosexuals, Gypsies (likely recruited from Dachau and Sachsenhausen concentration camps), and patients from psychiatric hospitals, as well as others considered unfit to serve in normal military units[citation needed].
    "In all my years as a soldier, I have never seen men fight so hard." - SS Obergruppenfuhrer Wilhelm Bittrich - Arnhem

  10. #10

    Default Re: Penal Battilions Did They Exist

    Hi Rob, the unit is the Hassle books like the stories, are fictional.

    But I have read them all and enjoyed them for what they are.

    Cheers, Ade.

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