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Yes I read that, but it seems to me as if it depicted the Waffen SS as without guilt of the numerous crimes commited during the war, arguing that it was a front line organization. Not only those crimes of the concentration camps, but also the events such as those of Malmedy. What happened to the men of the Waffen SS after the war, were they judged and hanged? These guys were the core of the nazi ideology, and they knew what the SS was all about, right? They thought they were of a superior race, right?Patrick wrote:Go here for a general answer to your question.
I'm sure some lively discussion will follow!
It depends on you point of view. The Allies named the Waffen-SS a criminal organization in Nuremberg and the organization (with Himmler, Eike, etc.) might have been criminal.Javier Sandoval wrote:Stupid question, but was the Waffen SS a criminal organization of killers? or just another branch of the armed forces?
Give it a rest. However, you do state ( I ) in which this is only yourI would suggest that individual Waffen-SS men committing war crimes knew perfectly well that they were wrong under any public code they had ever been exposed to. Some, particularly the instigators, may have believed that necessity somehow justified them nonetheless, while the rest were probably carried along by a combination of indoctrination, discipline and the lessening of moral restraints that prolonged exposure to war and death can induce. However, I doubt that a single one thought that these war crimes were actually right by any public code they had ever been exposed to.
Hi Jock,Jock wrote:Hi Sid,
I would agree with you that the 'ethos' of the SS was criminal, but does this not bring up an argument that they soldiers were only doing what they believed to be right, and helping the war effort?
As crazy as it sounds today, they mabye truely believed that shooting prisoners would help the war effort, ot that raping the enemies women was justified in some way because of all the cruelty, all over.
So does that make them criminals themselves, or merely an accessory to a crime?
My stance at the moment is that they were not criminals, just blind young men with skewed view on life, and a licence to kill those they felt had put them in the position they found themselves.
I agree with that completely, I was merely 'speculating' and let myself get slightly carried awayI believe that the execution of prisoners was seen as an exigency of war while rape was seen as a breakdown of discipline.