Second world war through the lenses of German soldiers

Mrs Slocombe

War Hero
In 1939, thousands of German soldiers, many of them conscripts, were dispatched across Europe. They went armed not only with weapons but with cameras – the famous German Leica and Rolleiflex – in their bags and orders to capture what they saw.

As Britain, France and the Allied countries mark the 77th anniversary of the Normandy landings on D-day this weekend, a recently released book All at War: Photography by German Soldiers 1939-45, is a compilation of these photographs taken from a vast collection held by the Archive of Modern Conflict in London.
Here are some of the photographs from the book
 
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From the link. That T35 is frikken enormous.
Screenshot_20210605_173145.jpg
 

diverman

LE
Book Reviewer
They photgraphed many of the horrors of the massacres they commited in the east from the day they invaded Poland. Maybe they thought those pictures would never comesto light as they would be victors.
 
They photgraphed many of the horrors of the massacres they commited in the east from the day they invaded Poland. Maybe they thought those pictures would never comesto light as they would be victors.

I lived and worked in Crete for 10 mostly very enjoyable years, got to know the people
The amount of massacres there during 3 years of German occupation was staggering.
It was not so much the total butchers bill - if compared to industrialised Extermination camps in Germany and Poland - but it was a hundred or so villages / towns and a couple of cities whose civvies were partially liquidated due to resistance in that area.

And none of it SS !

All either Falshirmjager , Mountain Div or standard German infantry Units.
 
They photgraphed many of the horrors of the massacres they commited in the east from the day they invaded Poland. Maybe they thought those pictures would never comesto light as they would be victors.
******** squaddies taking pictures of every ‘victory’ has always been the case.
Plus ca change.
 
I lived and worked in Crete for 10 mostly very enjoyable years, got to know the people
The amount of massacres there during 3 years of German occupation was staggering.
It was not so much the total butchers bill - if compared to industrialised Extermination camps in Germany and Poland - but it was a hundred or so villages / towns and a couple of cities whose civvies were partially liquidated due to resistance in that area.

And none of it SS !

All either Falshirmjager , Mountain Div or standard German infantry Units.
A superb twitter thread on the very subject: the 80th anniversary of the massacre of unarmed civilians at the Village of Kondomari in Crete on 2 June.



Plenty of pics from a budding photographer, Franz Peter Weixler who was held by the Gestapo for the last year of the war, indicted for treason; too many photographs of the wrong sort of thing.
 
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OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
"D-Day through German eyes" is a pretty good book on the subject

Also dispels some of the myths of 'crack troops' keeping the Yanks on the beaches.
 
A superb twitter thread on the very subject: the 80th anniversary of the massacre of unarmed civilians at the Village of Kondomari in Crete on 2 June.



Plenty of pics from a budding photographer, Franz Peter Weixler.

I have a house in a village near Alikianos .

An old chap I used to regularly chat to was about 8 years old when he and thirty odd villagers were machine-gunned under the bridge. He was hidden under a womans skirts and survived.
The rest of them are in an Ossuary at the eastern end of the bridge
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
"It Never Snows in September" by Robert Kershaw gives a very interesting view of the battle of Arnhem from the German perspective. :)

A short but fairly honest (as far as I can tell) book is 'The Man in the Black Fur Coat', which deals with a German Soldier surviving on the eastern front. Far more telling is the later period at the end of the war where he does what he can to keep his extended family together and alive. There are big gaps in the narrative which can only be guessed at.
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
It seems that they were *genuinely proud* of what they were doing.
They were saving their way of life and wrongs imposed on them after the Great War and before that.
That's what they believed, anyway.
Prior to1871 Germany was a collection of Feudal states, mainly involved in wars with France, amongst others. The punitive reperations imposed after the Great War, mainly at the insistence of France (still smarting from the Franco-Prussian wars and the constant losing / regaining of the Alsace region) created the deep feeling of injustice in the German people, letting their version of 'Le Petit Caporal' lead them into 'righting wrongs'. The rest, as we know.....
 
They were saving their way of life and wrongs imposed on them after the Great War and before that.
That's what they believed, anyway.
Prior to1871 Germany was a collection of Feudal states, mainly involved in wars with France, amongst others. The punitive reperations imposed after the Great War, mainly at the insistence of France (still smarting from the Franco-Prussian wars and the constant losing / regaining of the Alsace region) created the deep feeling of injustice in the German people, letting their version of 'Le Petit Caporal' lead them into 'righting wrongs'. The rest, as we know.....
That's an excellent point.
Even our Prime Minister at the time said we were laying down the foundations for the next war.
 

bestri10

Old-Salt
A short but fairly honest (as far as I can tell) book is 'The Man in the Black Fur Coat', which deals with a German Soldier surviving on the eastern front. Far more telling is the later period at the end of the war where he does what he can to keep his extended family together and alive. There are big gaps in the narrative which can only be guessed at.
Ive read this i thought it was a brilliant book but if i remember correctly was written by a relative who was writing based off the diary of Oskar Scheja which was missing the odd detail, two other books that are brilliant reads are 'against the odds' and 'until the eyes shut'.
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
That's an excellent point.
Even our Prime Minister at the time said we were laying down the foundations for the next war.
There's an awful lot of 'what-if's - the reperations to my mind were of secondary importance, Germany was more worried about re-annexing land that it needed to be more self-sufficient, Sudetenland, for example, was an area of rich mineral deposits and some oil fields, it's importance as a historical German settlement was purely secondary - much like Kosovo to the Serbs, it existed purely to pump electricity into Serbia, made from lignite-fired power stations with the added benefit of cheap labour and a reasonably good agricutural industry for fruit & veg.
 

OneTenner

LE
Book Reviewer
Ive read this i thought it was a brilliant book but if i remember correctly was written by a relative who was writing based off the diary of Oskar Scheja which was missing the odd detail, two other books that are brilliant reads are 'against the odds' and 'until the eyes shut'.
I've read 'Until the eyes shut' which I felt was more combat based and matter-of-fact, 'The man in.....' was written by a relative based on translations from the original Cursive script. Sure, there are omissions and errors, not helped by the poor spelling of Oskar and most of it being written whilst in hiding. If you read it as an examination of how humans survive, it's a powerful work.
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
I’ll just leave this here:

 

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