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Penal Battalion Buckle: Real or Fake

Article about: Thanks everyone for the comments! I learned some facts. There is an interesting history of these units, perhaps most notably the 999th Rehabilitation Unit(North Africa) , and the infamous Di

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Penal Battalion Buckle: Real or Fake

    Thanks everyone for the comments! I learned some facts. There is an interesting history of these units, perhaps most notably the 999th Rehabilitation Unit(North Africa) , and the infamous Dirlewanger Brigade(Eastern Front) Dirlewanger.

    Sven Hassel's books were a romanticized depiction of a "Dirty Dozen," however I imagine that the reality was a very miserable form of service, and in fact more like a death sentence.
    The Soviets had simular formations. Composed of the politically unreliable, common criminals, and errant members of the armed forces.
    I was mostly suspicious of this being a fake because of the nice paint job.
    Last edited by Hesher; 03-20-2011 at 08:23 AM.

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  3. #12

    Default Re: Penal Battalion Buckle: Real or Fake

    These buckles are not fakes, they are just post-war produced for police, etc. There are a number of different "neutral" designs that were made for such purposes right after the war in both Eastern and Western zones. Some war-time buckles were overstamped with a new design, such as an edelweiss (the eagle and swastika can still faintly be seen under the edelweiss). Others, like the "brain" buckle with the 1943 stamp on it, were made using blank war-time buckle stocks. A photo was recently found by a friend ( I have yet to see it) showing the falsely named "penal battalion" buckle in wear by post-war German police. I hope this clears things up a bit.

  4. #13

    Default Re: Penal Battalion Buckle: Real or Fake

    Hey! If you have a chance to post that pic! It would certainly put the debate to rest! I agree with you completely in regards to it being used and it not being a fantasy piece! I have yet to find any pictoral evidence though! Hope to see that pic for sure!!

    Cheers!
    Rob

  5. #14

    Default Re: Penal Battalion Buckle: Real or Fake

    Quote by Ben Evans View Post
    M, there is a big belief that these are post war manufactured, however!!! I also believe that some of these have been ground dug from notorious battle areas, if Dimas reads this thread he may even have an example of one as I think it was Dimas that commented once that he had either seen Penal buckle that had been ground dug or even found them himself! So at the moment for me the verdict remains open on these buckles until more evidence can be found to say whether they are in fact TR era or post war produced.
    I was also led to believe that they are post-war buckles. I would like to see some pictures of ground-dug ones.

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