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Nazi Commander's picture being used by DOD to recognize the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge

Not exactly the most tactful way to remind people that the Battle of the Bulge started today 75 years ago today. Peiper was supposed to be in overall charge of the offensive and did a very good job initially. Everybody's so sensitive these days though. You can't give the Devil his due without triggering some snowflake. It's probably the crop coming up; the schools don't properly teach military history anymore.

I wonder what the snowflakes would think of the funny as fcuk t-shirts my unit had made after Panama? I've got a couple that I secured from the mess sergeant and they are funny, but you had to be there.

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Army and DoD post image of Nazi war criminal to commemorate Battle of the Bulge

By: Shawn Snow   29 minutes ago

A colorized photo of a war criminal and Nazi Waffen-SS officer responsible for the deaths of American prisoners of war during World Word II was posted to U.S. Army and Defense Department Facebook accounts commemorating the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge.

The image of Joachim Peiper — a Panzer tank commander involved in the deaths of 84 Americans in what is known as the Malmedy massacre — was originally posted to Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps, and subsequently shared by Department of Defense and Army 10th Mountain Division.

The image featuring the Nazi commander generated massive push back on social media with some describing the post as “vile” and “disturbing.” The post included a narrative featuring excerpts from Peiper’s journal entry that some commentators on social media described as a “fanboy” account of the Nazi commander’s exploits during the Battle of the Bulge.

“The mission was called “Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein” (“Operation Watch on the Rhine”), and Joachim would lead it. The fate of his beloved nation rested on his ability to lead his men through the American lines,” the now edited narrative reads.

“This surprise western counteroffensive Peiper was set to launch was the only hope for the survival of Nazi Germany,” the narrative states

The image has since been removed from the Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps Facebook post and it’s narrative of the Battle of the Bulge has since been edited.

The Army and DoD have yet to explain why the colorized image of a Nazi war criminal was prominently placed on its social media accounts. Military Times reached out to the Pentagon Monday evening and was told that the DoD currently had nothing to provide.

Brian Fickel

@USArmyPAO

I am dumbfounded by the decision to prominently display a Nazi on military social media on the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge.

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

“I’d point to the comment at the bottom of the post. That it’s a series of historical posts that begin here and will tell the entire story of the Battle of the Bulge through January 22nd,” a Pentagon spokesperson said in an emailed statement to Military Times.

The Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps apologized on Twitter for using the image of the Nazi commander.

“We regret the use of the photograph of Joachim Peiper. The intent was to tell the full story of the Battle of the Bulge, which will continue here, by explaining the incredible odds that were stacked up against the American Soldier by the time the reserve was called in on 18 Dec,” the Army airborne unit tweeted Tuesday morning.

Military Times has reached out to the Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps and has yet to receive a response.

The thread sparked outrage even among Army public affairs personnel.

“I am dumbfounded by the decision to prominently display a Nazi on military social media on the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge," Lt. Col. Brian Fickel tweeted.

“I was surprised to see this “fanboy” flavored piece was written by 18th Airborne Corps. I was all like, wut”," one person wrote in the comments section of the Army’s Facebook post. “This piece fanboyed the hell out of Pieper [sic], a convicted war criminal who’s men murdered four score American soldiers. Do you expect something similar where Osama Bin Laden or Abu Bakr al Baghdadi are lauded?”

“I sure hope you understand how vile and disturbing that pic is!!!," another Facebook user commented.

The Washington Post reported that the Army’s XVIII Airborne Corps deleted a tweet where the unit described Peiper as a “terrible person” while calling him an “effective combat leader” who “rocketed through the ranks during the war, racking up medals, & promotions.”

However, not everyone was outraged by the posting. Boris Stern, an Army veteran of the Battle of the Bulge, told Military Times he was not really concerned about the posting after learning about the incident.

Stern was a sergeant and infantry squad leader in the U.S. Army when Nazi Germany made a surprise last offensive against the Allied forces in World War II.

“I was sleeping around 5:30 a.m. when I heard very powerful explosions and I knew something was wrong. They were shelling the hell out of us," Stern said recounting the early hours of the fight. “We didn’t know what was going on.”

“We lost a lot of guys,” Stern Sid. Stern, now 94 resides in Tampa Bay, Florida.

The Washington Post and journalist Corey Pein noted the image of Peiper appears to have been colorized by an alleged neo-Nazi sympathizer.

The bottom right corner of the image features a watermark that states, “Colored by Tobias Kurtz.” The same image and watermark appears on a website called Deviant Art and posted by a user who goes by the name “kapo-neu." The about section for Deviant Art claims the he is “Tobias Kurtz and I’m young boy what does he like Photography, Games, Sport, Graphic Designs etc. For now I’m living in Bratislava ( the capital city of Slovakia ).”

The Deviant Art gallery includes scores of colorized photos of Nazi soldiers during World War II and Nazi propaganda including an image of Adolf Hitler laughing as German soldiers are about to execute a kneeling former Soviet leader Joseph Stalin.

Secretary of Defense Mark Esper was in in Bastogne, Belgium to mark the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge.

About this Author
About Shawn Snow
Peiper Commander.JPG

Shawn Snow is the senior reporter for Marine Corps Times and a Marine Corps veteran.

 
Could have been worse.

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Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
Well given Peiper's role and significance in the Ardennes, it's not actually inappropriate to post an image of him when they're remembering the start of the offensive.
 
Not exactly the most tactful way to remind people that the Battle of the Bulge started today 75 years ago today. Peiper was supposed to be in overall charge of the offensive and did a very good job initially. Everybody's so sensitive these days though. You can't give the Devil his due without triggering some snowflake. It's probably the crop coming up; the schools don't properly teach military history anymore.


“The mission was called “Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein” (“Operation Watch on the Rhine”), and Joachim would lead it. The fate of his beloved nation rested on his ability to lead his men through the American lines,” the now edited narrative reads.
Peiper was NOT in overall charge, he commanded a battlegroup of 1st LSSAH division smaller than a brigade in strength.
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
Peiper was NOT in overall charge, he commanded a battlegroup of 1st LSSAH division smaller than a brigade in strength.

You can't deny he's inextricably linked with the offensive in - if not popular culture, then mil history - though?
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
Or maybe Patton would be more appropriate?

Given it's a series of daily images reflecting the engagement, I imagine he's guaranteed to feature later since the early days didn't go too well for the allied side.
 
Given it's a series of daily images reflecting the engagement, I imagine he's guaranteed to feature later since the early days didn't go too well for the allied side.


I was more alluding to the fact that, in general [sic], he had bugger all to do with it until the absolutely final hour.

However, he's a well known American and therefore should do nicely! :)
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
Unternehmen Wacht am Rhein (“Operation Watch on the Rhine”) Model, commander of German Army Group B (Heeresgruppe B), and von Rundstedt, overall commander of the German Army Command in the West (OB West), were put in charge of carrying out the operation. Adolf Hitler personally selected for the counter-offensive on the northern shoulder of the western front the best troops available and officers he trusted. The lead role in the attack was given to 6th Panzer Army, commanded by SS-Oberstgruppenführer Sepp Dietrich. The Fifth Panzer Army under General Hasso von Manteuffel was assigned to the middle sector with the objective of capturing Brussels.
The 6th Panzer Army included the elite of the Waffen-SS, including four Panzer divisions and five infantry divisions in three corps. SS-Obersturmbannführer Joachim Peiper led Kampfgruppe Peiper, consisting of 4,800 men and 600 vehicles, which was charged with leading the main effort.
Unashamedly copied from https://historicalsocietyofgermanmi...war-two-battles/battle-normandy/battle-bulge/
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
It'll be interesting to see if they recognise the British contribution to the failure of "Operation Watch on the Rhine"
 

MoleBath

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Well given Peiper's role and significance in the Ardennes, it's not actually inappropriate to post an image of him when they're remembering the start of the offensive.
#
The responsibility for Malmedy is a bit grey.Some disputed evidence at the trial See The Devil's Adjudant by Mike Reynoldspp 252-259
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
Monty even more so- shame he couldn’t resist rubbing our US friends’ noses in it. For that reason he’s less likely to appear in this remembrance than a Nazi murderer.
He didn't - well, not to the extent thast the Americans believe(d) he did, the BBC interview he did (perhaps unwisely) was intercepted by ther Germans, re-written to show the Americans in a bad light and broadcast from occupied Netherlands, the Americans heard it and took it to be a genuine BBC broadcast - very good psyops by the Germans
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Monty even more so- shame he couldn’t resist rubbing our US friends’ noses in it. For that reason he’s less likely to appear in this remembrance than a Nazi murderer.

It was the action that finally exhausted people's patience with him.

A shame - not so much for him but for the British troops who did what needed doing.
 
Day one of the Bulge?



Lt Lyle Bouck Jr. Found his platoon, the Intelligence and Recce Platoon of 394th Infantry Rgt (18 men, accompanied by 4 artillery observers) in Lanzerath, right in the path of the Germans. Held off a battalion for nigh on 24 hours, buggered up the German timetable, inflicted somewhere in the region of 100 German casualties before being finally outflanked and taken prisoner.

Because of their being taken PoW, the story of what the platoon did took years to properly emerge, and Bouck - and everyone else in the platoon - was decorated in 1981; Bouck getting a Distinguished Service Cross.

Not tricky to find a photo for someone to be representative of Day 1...
 

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