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SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

Article about: Josef Pfaffenbichler was born on the 9th February 1915 in the small town of Ybbsitz in the Amstetten area of Lower Austria. After joining the Polizei he spent time at the Polizei Waffenschul

  1. #1

    Default SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    Josef Pfaffenbichler was born on the 9th February 1915 in the small town of Ybbsitz in the Amstetten area of Lower Austria. After joining the Polizei he spent time at the Polizei Waffenschule I located at Dresden-Hellerau before joining 8(schw)/SS-Pol.Rgt 26 on the 1st April 1943 (5 months before this soldbuch was issued). Unfortunately, this soldbuch does not have a photo of Josef.
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    At the end of July 1942 Polizei Regiment Nord Norwegen consisting of Pol.Btls 251, 255 & 256 was renamed Polizei Regiment 26. At the beginning of May 1943 it was moved to Wehrkreis XX (Danzig-West Prussia) and reorganized for employment in the east, receiving 700 recruits.

    Prior to its most notorious action it operated in the Tomaszow area of the Generalgouvernement in June & July 1943 as well as participating in Operations Werewolf I & II in the Zamosc-Bilgoraj area. In July it moved to the Lutsk-Kovel area of the Ukraine before moving on to the Stanislau-Hungarian border area where it took part in Operation Weichsel III.
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  3. #2

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    However, it was the actions in August 1943 that wrote its name in the history of the Holocaust.

    In mid-July 1943, the authorities in Berlin decided to liquidate the Bialystok ghetto and move its production facilities to the Lublin area. The ghetto had a population of 30,000 at this time and the decision to liquidate it was kept secret, in part to forestall a repeat of the recent uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto.
    On August 16th 1943, before daybreak, German soldiers, SS men and Ukrainian auxiliary forces under Georg Michalsen ringed the ghetto. In the ghetto streets posters printed in the name of the Judenrat urged all Jews to report to the ghetto gate for deportation. While most inhabitants heeded the call, a number went into hiding in bunkers and hideouts prepared in advance.
    German & Ukrainian forces spent the next five days systematically combing the ghetto and trapping thousands of fugitives.
    Despite German attempts, the final liquidation of the ghetto was met with stiff resistance from the Jewish Underground but coming so soon after Warsaw, the Germans were in no mood to allow any resistance to gain ground and with brutal measures defeated the resistance within a number of hours.

    Between 17th - 23rd August 1943, more than 26,000 Jews were deported from the ghetto some 7,600 to Treblinka, about 4,000 to Auschwitz-Birkenau and approximately 15,000 to labour camps in the Lublin district to which 5 ghetto factories were transferred as well. During the operation, hundreds of Jews were killed in and around the ghetto and some 300 patients in the hospitals were murdered. On August 24th about 1,200 children and 60 elderly Jews were deported to Theresienstadt; on 7th October 1943 they were subsequently deported to Auschwiz-Birkenau and murdered after a plan to swap them for German PoWs fell through.

    As can be seen from the entry in the campaign listings of the soldbuch, Josef Pfaffenbichler was a member of the force that liquidated the Bialystok ghetto with brutal force.
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    Further proof that Josef Pfaffenbichler was involved at Bialystok comes from an Einsatz slip that came with the soldbuch and stamped & signed by the Regimental Adjutant.
    This particular slip lists those actions that Pfaffenbichler participated in and which counted as Bandenkampftage for which Pfaffenbichler had 18 days in total - just 2 days short of the 20 needed for the award of the Anti-Partisan Badge In Bronze. However, it is those listed from days 8 to 12 that show that the Germans counted the liquidation of the Bialystok ghetto as anti-partisan actions rather than the murderous action it was.
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  4. #3

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    All the Jews, according to the deportation plan, had to be sent to Treblinka in five train transports. The transports, which included 76 freight cars, arrived in Treblinka on August 18 & 19th (3 of the transports passed through Treblinka heading to Auschwitz, Majdanek & Theresienstadt) Two transports from Bialystok were the last to arrive and be murdered in Treblinka.
    At that time the camp had already ceased to be fully operational. Part of it had been destroyed during the uprising a few weeks earlier and the number of Jews remaining in the camp to carry out the grim work had been greatly reduced so that the time taken to process the Bialystok transports had been greatly increased. These difficulties were the reason why 2 of the other 3 transports were sent on to Majdanek & Auschwitz. It had always been part of the plan to send the children to Theresienstadt for the prisoner swap plan.
    The deportation & liquidation of the Jews from Bialystok was the last large-scale killing operation in which Globocnik and the Operation Reinhard staff were involved. Upon accomplishing this mission and in recognition of his work, Globocnik was promoted and appointed by Himmler as the Higher SS & Police Leader (HSSPF) in the Trieste area of northeast Italy.
    Between 11,000 to 15,000 of those deported to the Lublin area from the Bialystok ghetto were murdered in November 1943 during the Aktion known as Erntefest (Harvest Festival) at Majdanek.

    After the liquidation of the ghetto SS-Polizei-Regiment 26 continued with its anti-partisan operations as well as being thrust in the front line.
    In September 1943 it operated against the partisans of the Kolpak Brigade in the Zamosc area before taking part in Operation Heinrich in Oct-Nov 1943 between Nevel & the Latvian border. For the final month of 1943 it took part in Operation Otto and advanced from both sides of Zebezh and aimed to push south to the Dvinsk-Polotsk rail line.
    In January 1944 as part of Polizei-Kampfgruppe Jeckeln it deployed with the 263 Infantry Division as part of the 16 Armee.
    It was during this fighting in the Nevel area in early 1944 that Josef Pfaffenbichler met his fate. During the fighting on 14th January 1944 Pfaffenbichler was killed in action near the village of Pogary.
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    As well as the Bandenkampftage slip, there were another 4 similar slips with the soldbuch. Two of these were the typed-up versions of the other 2 that had hand written entries.
    One listed days that had counted as Sturmtage while the other slip listed Nahkampftage. By the time of his death Josef Pfaffenbichler, who held the rank of Zugwachmesiter d.Schutzpolizei, had been awarded 2 'Sturm' days and 4 'Nahkampf' days - the last of which was the day he was killed.
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    Josef Pfaffenbichler had been awarded the Sudetenland Medal & the KvK II Kl mit Schwertern.

    Sources Used:
    Combat Operations Of The German Ordnungspolizei 1939-45 by Rolf Michaelis
    The Yad Vashem Encyclopedia Of The Ghettos During The Holocaust Vol 1
    Belzec, Sobibor, Treblinka - The Operation Reinhard Death Camps by Yitzhak Arad
    The Uniformed Police Forces Of The Third Reich 1933-45 by Phil Nix & Georges Jerome

  5. #4

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    Very interesting Soldbuch Hucks216

  6. #5

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    Well done ...

  7. #6

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    There are still so many items out to be found but little real history behind them.
    Very interesting and thank you for the effort.

    Rudy

  8. #7
    ?

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    Hello Hucks, Thats quite a storey...very interesting! I like items like this that are personalized..it sheds a whole new light on the things we collect and the war. Great job on all the research and thanks much for posting and sharing with us. I appreciate all the time you've put into it.

    Regards, Edwin

  9. #8

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    Very nicley researched.

    Cheers, Ade.

  10. #9

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    A very good presentation indeed; thanks for your efforts!

  11. #10

    Default Re: SS-Polizei Soldbuch With A Link To Treblinka

    I wish I had your patience Hucks, again, another fine researched piece. Nice one!

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