What action won Fegelin the Knight's Cross?

Individual German officers, soldiers and award holders.

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Helmut Von Moltke

What action won Fegelin the Knight's Cross?

Post by Helmut Von Moltke » Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:37 am

hi, does anyone know why the famous SS General Hermann Fegelein won Knight's Cross? He is mentioned in a lot of sources about Hitler's last days in Berlin in 1945, but no info about what he did brave that earned him it. thanks for any help! :D

helmut

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Doktor Krollspell
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Post by Doktor Krollspell » Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:10 pm

Hello Helmut!

Hermann Fegelein was awarded the Knight's Cross on March 2, 1942 as a SS-Standardenführer commanding the SS-Kavallerie-Brigade fighting on the Eastern front under Heeresgruppe "Mitte". They where mainly used in anti-partisan warfare in the Pripjet swamps.

Having said this, one must remember that this particular unit and it's commander Fegelein was also heavily involved in the ongoing genocide of russian jewry that was committed by the Einsatzkommandos. See the following post by Dave Thompson over on AHF:
From Rob - WSSOB re the Waffen-SS "Florian Geyer" Division:

Here's some excerpts re: SS-Kav Regt./8th SS Division war crimes:

January 1940: Unit subordinated to HSSPF "Ost" Krüger, the former inspector of the Equestrian SS. The unit suffers from a lack of mounts, so in the early part of 1940 replacement horses are requisitioned from Polish breeders and even circuses.

Squardon 5 under W. Weichenwallner inspects a cattle car of tranported Jews & sees the car is filthy with excrement. Fearing dysentry, he orders all the Jews shot. His troops don't have enough ammunition and the Heer refuses to provide any, so Weichenwallner coerces members of the Gendarmerie to kill them, although 11 SS soldiers participate as well.
Fegelein reports how pleased he is that troops commanded by his younger brother Waldemar (who served as an unit officer) fufill their "special tasks" without hesitation.

March 1940: Gestapo investigate allegations that Fegelein has been sending looted goods and cash back to the SS cavalry school at Riem. RFSS Himmler discourages the investigation, not wanting to one of his favored, charismatic officers exposed by scandal.

March 30: Squadron 10, along with Police Battalion 51, battle partisans at Kamienna. SS troops employ "atonement actions" (burning villages, executing males and evacuating women & children)

May 1940: Unit contains 12 cavalry squardons reorganized into 2 regiments - 1st & 2nd Totenkopf Reiterstandarte; training in Poland; unit strength 1,908 officers & men

SS cavalrymen turn over Polish farmers of "questionable" race to the SD who sieze the Polish farmer's property and resettle it with a volksdeutsche family, often in the same day. Problems arise when the SS and volksdeutsche resettlers find Polish women and children who had evaded the evictions still on their farmsteads. Unit detatchments used to keep the peace between Ukrainian & Polish populations

September 1940:
Sept 19-20: The First and Fifth Squadrons from the 1st SS Reiterstandarte participate in the mass arrest of 1,600 Poles in Warsaw after the assassination of one SD man; 2nd Squadron detains 700 Jews for the SD at Otwock. Elements of the 1st SS Reiterstandarte execute 20 Jews per SD orders.

June 1941:
June 22: Operation Barbarossa - Germany invades the Soviet Union; unit assigned to Kommandostab RFSS.

June 24: Unit begins mopping-up operations; SS-Sturmbannführer Fassbender appointed liason to Heer units.
June 26: SS-Obersturmführer Maeker cited for bravery in defendign the 87th ID's flank at Narev.

June 27: Himmler, angry that his units are being used on the front lines, informs XLII Armee Korps that it does not tactically control the Kommandostab-RFSS.

June 28: Himmler expressly orders HSSPF Bach-Zelewski to kill all male Jews and drives the women & children into the swamps. Fegelein comments that "only villages that are free of Jews do not become partisan bases."

June 29: SS Kav Regt 2 stationed Sonnav until July 1

July 1941: SS-Kavallerie Regiment particpates in antipartisan sweeps in Pripet marshes; kills 259 Soviet soldiers and 6,500 civilians, mopping up after Einsatzgruppe B.

July 30: Voraus-Abt. combat against Soviet Cossak cavalry, Novo Andreyevka. Back at HQ, RFSS Himmler, Fegelein & Von dem Bach meet; Himmler conveys the "All Jews must be shot. Drive the females into the swamps" order. Fegelein relays order to SS-Sturmbannführer Herthes. Herthes on Aug 2nd (or 3rd?) informs Franz Magill of Fegelein's order with the additional comment "The Jews are the reservoir of the partisans." Magill, shocked by the order to drive women and children into the swamps to drown, radios Brigade HQ to confirm the order. Brigade HQ confirms the order.

August 1941: Unit becomes SS-Kavallerie Brigade (combining 1st & 2nd SS-Totenkopf-Reiterstandarte) under Kommandostab Reichsführer-SS; used for anti-partisan security duties behind the front lines in Russia at the 300x200 square km Pripet Marshes area. Unit operates under the command of SS-Obergruppenführer Erich von dem Bach-Zelewski. Unit strengh 3,500 men, 2,900 horses, 375 vehicles

Aug 2-12: 2 mounted detatchments under Franz Magill, along with Police & SD troops, kill 14,178 Jews, 1001 partisans and 699 Soviet soldiers at a cost of 2 dead. Many Ukrainian, Byelorussian and Polish residents assist in the capture of Jews to be killed. Magill, who may have complained to Fegelein about the unjustness of the orders, also commented "The Ukrainian clergy was very cooperative" in these actions, and that driving the women and children into the swamps "did not have the desired effect" as the water wasn't deep enough to drown them. An expanded quote from his report:

"...Jewish marauders were shot. Only a few manual laborers employed by the Wehrmacht repair shops were spared. Driving women & children towards the the marshes did not have the desired effect as the marshes were not deep enough to ensure drowning...The total number of marauders and others shot by the Reiter Abt. stands at 6,526 men. About 10 prisoners were taken away. Overall, the operation may be described as a success."*
* See page 29-31, "Division Florian Geyer", by Charles Trang


Aug 7: SS Brigade reports 7,819 Jews killed, Minsk Area.

Aug 8: Squadron 1, SS cavalry Regt. 2 kills 1,950-6,526? Jews at Pinsk. SS lower execution age limit to age 6. Himmler regards the number of executions as "too insignificant." Fegelein, aware of the emotional toll these grisly actions take on his troops, makes a concerted effort to ensure that the men are given awards and decorations for these "special assignments."

Aug 11: Magill reports "impressions of combat: none." In a post-war interrogation, one of Magill's men commented

"...the Jews behaved themselves in an exemplary fashion. No one tried to flee for his life. I could only marvel at them."

The SS soldier and his comrades thought what they were doing was, in his words, a "horrible madness*" (* "The Third Reich: A New History" by Michael Burleigh, see p. 566 & footnote 191)

Aug 13: Brigade receives intelligence "Partisan bands operate with the support of the Jewish population."

Aug 15-21: SS-Kavallerie Regt. 2 participates in antipartisan sweep "Operation Turov" at Turov, Pripet marshes

Aug 23: The mayor and members of the Hilfspolizei are killed by partisans at Starobin; 3rd squadron dispatched to appoint a new mayor and reorganize the Hilfspolizei detatchment. The SS suspect the assassins to be Jewish, so CO Waldemar Fegelein (younger brother of Hermann) orders all male Jews in the town to be shot. 21 Jews killed.

Sources:

Riding East: The SS Cavalry Brigade in Poland & Russia 1939-42 - Mark C. Yerger - Schiffler Military History - 1996

Himmler's Cavalry: The Equestrian SS 1930-45 - Paul J. Wilson - Schiffler Military History - 2000

Division Florian Geyer - Charles Trang - Heimdal - 2000

The Third Reich: A New History - Michael Burleigh - Hill & Wang - 2000
http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... c&start=15


So this was partly why the "famous" SS General recieved his Knight's Cross in 1942...


Regards,

Krollspell
"Wie es eigentlich gewesen ist"
Leopold von Ranke (1795-1886)

Helmut Von Moltke

Post by Helmut Von Moltke » Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:36 am

sigh... an RK not earned by heroism on the real battefield. disgraceful blot to the name of the Waffen SS...... :( just my 2 cents...

helmut

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Artur Phleps
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Post by Artur Phleps » Fri Mar 31, 2006 9:50 am

Hermann Fegelein was the commander of the SS-Kavalleriebrigade which consisted of two regiments and supporting units. It was basically a mounted infantry unit. The brigade was involved under the command of Army Group Center 1941-42 and when the Soviets attacked, the unit was heavily engaged in the defensive fighting and greatly assisted in the closing of the break in the front line which resulted in the destruction of two Soviet armies. The brigade marched 400 km through mud, swamps, and heat to accomplish this. Hermann received the Ritterkreuz for his leadership and the accomplishments of his unit.

Hermann also received the Eichenlaub on 22 Dec 1943 and the Schwerter on 30 July 1944. Such awards were given out for not only personal bravery and accomplishments but also for the success of the units which the recipient commanded.

The tragedy is that Hermann was executed on the orders of Hitler when Hermann tried to leave Berlin, seeing that there was no sense in laying down his life for an insane man. His courage and achievements meant nothing to Hitler, let alone that he was married to Hitler's mistress' sister.

The biography of Hermann can be found in E. G. Kraetschmer's Die Ritterkreuztraeger der Waffen-SS.

Helmut Von Moltke

Post by Helmut Von Moltke » Fri Mar 31, 2006 6:59 pm

intresting info there. :[]

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Alex Coles
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Post by Alex Coles » Sat Apr 01, 2006 1:55 am

Helmut, your emoticons in your posts are getting annoying. Are you an immature brat?

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Post by Laurent Daniel » Sat Apr 01, 2006 2:43 am

17 SS Panzer Grenadier wrote:Helmut, your emoticons in your posts are getting annoying. Are you an immature brat?
Not yet fully mature, most probably.
What exactly is annoying in his emoticons?
Are you a mature quaint ?
Regards
Daniel Laurent

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Jeremy Chan
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Post by Jeremy Chan » Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:55 am

Laurent Daniel wrote:
17 SS Panzer Grenadier wrote:Helmut, your emoticons in your posts are getting annoying. Are you an immature brat?
Not yet fully mature, most probably. What exactly is annoying in his emoticons?
Very much more likely. Probably the fact that the chucks them liberally in every damn post of his. It quite implies a chronic lack of seriousness, genuineness in his posting.
Laurent Daniel wrote: Are you a mature quaint ?
I can't really speak for him, but, very much more so than H, I can say.
Cheers,
Jeremy

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Helmut
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Post by Helmut » Tue Apr 04, 2006 12:35 pm

Jeremy Chan wrote:
Laurent Daniel wrote:
17 SS Panzer Grenadier wrote:Helmut, your emoticons in your posts are getting annoying. Are you an immature brat?
Not yet fully mature, most probably. What exactly is annoying in his emoticons?
Very much more likely. Probably the fact that the chucks them liberally in every damn post of his. It quite implies a chronic lack of seriousness, genuineness in his posting.
Laurent Daniel wrote: Are you a mature quaint ?
I can't really speak for him, but, very much more so than H, I can say.
Cheers,
Jeremy
Is all this really necessary. If the emoticons were not to be used they woldn't have been put in by Jason. If you don't like them, ignore them.

Regards,

Helmut

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Post by Michael Miller / ABR » Fri Apr 07, 2006 10:49 am

Fegelein's brigade appears to have been a mounted Einsatzgruppe, which he led with competence, bravery, and incredible brutality.

~ Mike
"I am a historian before I am a Christian; my object is simply to find out how the things actually occurred."

~Leopold von Ranke, 19th Century German Historian

Guiscard
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Post by Guiscard » Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:28 am

Helmut wrote:
Jeremy Chan wrote:
Laurent Daniel wrote:
17 SS Panzer Grenadier wrote:Helmut, your emoticons in your posts are getting annoying. Are you an immature brat?
Not yet fully mature, most probably. What exactly is annoying in his emoticons?
Very much more likely. Probably the fact that the chucks them liberally in every damn post of his. It quite implies a chronic lack of seriousness, genuineness in his posting.
Laurent Daniel wrote: Are you a mature quaint ?
I can't really speak for him, but, very much more so than H, I can say.
Cheers,
Jeremy
Is all this really necessary. If the emoticons were not to be used they woldn't have been put in by Jason. If you don't like them, ignore them.

Regards,

Helmut
What is wrong with you sick b******s who think that, that guy was 'brave' and 'couragous' he killed hundreds or thousands of innocent jews! THAT IS NOT BRAVE OR COURAGOUS! He got his KC through his reckless not brave leadership!

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Post by Tom Houlihan » Tue Apr 18, 2006 12:33 am

Guiscard, you are certainly entitled to your personal opinions of the posters, and the men they are talking about.

You are not entitled to personal attacks. Please refrain in the future, mon ami!
TLH3
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Post by Laurent Daniel » Tue Apr 18, 2006 2:48 am

Hi Tom,
Tom wrote:Please refrain in the future, mon ami!
Guiscard is French ?

Hi Guiscard,
If you read the posts at the beginning of that somehow agitated thread, you will see precisions and details regarding the war crimes committed by the unit that Fegelin commanded.

Moreover, we all know here the extend of the crimes committed by the Nazis. Dig a bit in the archives of this forum and you will find things that may lead our younger members to have nightmares and call Mum in the middle of the night.

If it's not enough, I can post here some descriptions of the crimes committed by the French allies of the Nazi. And other members can do the same re. their own country.

But, please remember it, this forum is an History forum and is not a hidden neo-nazi or denialist workshop. I witnessed some Neo-Nazi or denialist attacks here. That's why you can see, here and there, the mention "banned"....

So, relax, and share your knowledge with us.
Regards
Daniel Laurent

Guiscard
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Post by Guiscard » Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:17 am

Wow? You live in Bangkok? So do I! Awesome!

And back to the subject:

Yes, I apolgize. *Nods head*

Laurent Daniel
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Post by Laurent Daniel » Tue Apr 18, 2006 8:25 am

Guiscard wrote:Wow? You live in Bangkok? So do I! Awesome!
Gees, 2 Feldgrau members in Bangkok!
Tell me more !
[email protected]
Regards
Daniel
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:wink:

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