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German troops executing Polish civilians at Bochnia, near Kraków, Poland, 18 Dec 1939

Caption   German troops executing Polish civilians at Bochnia, near Kraków, Poland, 18 Dec 1939 ww2dbase
More on...   
Invasion of Poland   Main article  Photos  
Photos on Same Day 18 Dec 1939
Added By C. Peter Chen
Added Date 26 Sep 2009

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Anonymous says:
22 Jan 2011 09:33:57 AM

I believe the firing squad is either SS or Police. There is a distinct difference between the caliber of these men and regular army soldiers that should be made clear.
2. Anonymous says:
30 Jul 2013 09:10:03 AM

No there is no diffrence. Wehrmacht was equally involded in genocide and it is already proven. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_crimes_of_the_Wehrmacht#Invasion_of_Poland
3. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2013 09:04:04 AM

dont forget..there was those poles who wore the uniform also..even more disgusting
4. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2013 09:04:21 AM

No difference. For example at Stalingrad, German got into hospital for mentally challenged children and killed them all. No SS units fought in the Battle of Stalingrad, only Paulus' 6th army.
5. Geoffrey Megargee says:
18 Dec 2013 09:11:50 AM

Yes, those are SS/police. This does not absolve the Wehrmacht of responsibility for the crimes it committed in Poland; I post it simply for the sake of accuracy.
6. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2013 09:43:00 AM

I think 'einsatzgruppe' . Check wiki for what they did...
7. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2013 09:51:54 AM

looks like a movie still
8. Richard W. Hobbs says:
18 Dec 2013 12:12:04 PM

Question. Is the man second from left possibly a junior officer by the leather chest strap that I see and the P08 Luger holster? Lugers were not generally issued to regular soldiers but were instead issued to officers and/or special ranks. It is also not unheard of for officers to step in with a firing squad if necessary for some reason to them.
9. JRN says:
18 Dec 2013 01:52:34 PM

See the black collars? SS.. (Schutzstaffeln) Further, the 'regular army' did NOT subscribe to this sort of thing but Hitler's SS, his personal army, was ruthless. I have/had friends who were in the WWII German Army. The Wehrmacht did not approve of Hitler and there was more than just one attempt on his life, most of which have never been publicized and all instigated by the regular army.
10. Anonymous says:
19 Dec 2013 02:18:02 AM

Wiki said so. Then it must be true.
11. Anonymous says:
19 Dec 2013 02:32:42 AM

Waffen SS were highly trained elite soldiers
12. Geoffrey Megargee says:
19 Dec 2013 08:06:24 AM

To JRN: The collars are actually green, though you can't tell in this B&W photo, of course. More telling: the decal on the side of the helmet, which marks them as Schutzpolizei.

As for the role of the army: There were 17-19 million people in the Wehrmacht, and most of them probably committed no crimes. However, as an institution, the army cooperated fully in the regime's crimes. That fact has been documented over and over for decades now. True, a few officers tried to kill Hitler, but they were the exceptions. Most senior officers, out of obedience, a twisted sense of honor, or enthusiasm, cooperated fully in all that they were asked to do.
13. Geoffrey Megargee says:
19 Dec 2013 08:08:58 AM

My mistake - those collars *are* black. Still Schutzpolizei, though.
14. freakPanc says:
19 Dec 2013 12:37:44 PM

germany murderer
15. peych13 says:
19 Dec 2013 01:43:06 PM

wehrmacht or ss it doesn't matter, they were all German.
16. olo says:
19 Dec 2013 02:56:58 PM

JRN co ty opoiwadasz ! mój dziadek walczy l w czasie kampani wrzesniowej zołnierze niemeiccy to hańba
17. Yesugey says:
19 Dec 2013 03:09:41 PM

Yes Wehrmacht might involved with war crimes for sure, but not more than any other army, American, British, or even Poles if they have one.
18. Anonymous says:
19 Dec 2013 04:21:02 PM

Not black collars, probably dark green (early enough in the war).
19. JRN says:
22 Dec 2013 07:35:24 AM

TO GEOFRREY: These guys are not SS/Police they are "Armed SS" and this is referenced in the book "German Uniforms of the Third Reich" by Brian Leigh Davis Image 162. I do welcome corrections to anything I post on here as I am still learning. Thanks!
20. JRN says:
22 Dec 2013 07:43:35 AM

TO OLO>>> I'm sorry to hear that your Grandfather had to fight in that way, my uncle also fought in the Battle of the Bulge (U.S. Army.) Yes, the actions of so many soldiers and leaders was a disgrace and all in the name of politics. I don't know your language (Polish) so I'm using an on-line translator. Do OLO >>> Przykro mi słyszeć, że Twój dziadek miał walczyć w ten sposób, mój wujek walczył także w bitwie o Ardeny (US Army). Tak, działania tak wielu żołnierzy i przywódców było hańbą i wszystko w imię polityki. Nie wiem, język (polski), więc używam tłumacza on-line.
21. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2014 07:20:50 AM

Crimes of Wehrmacht were an everydays routine, espacially in Poland. Criminal SS and noble Wehrmach is just a myth.
22. Anonymous says:
18 Dec 2014 10:23:57 AM

einsatzgruppe. they followed the wehrmacht in there footsteps. 'clearing' the land behind the troops. awful what they did before the gaschambers where invented.

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