History 27/12/19 “Kinburnska massacre”: how the Czech partisans took revenge on the Estonian SS

In may 1945, Czech partisans staged a vigilante justice on Estonian soldiers of the 20th Grenadier division of the SS. Shot thousands of prisoners of the SS. The massacre was stopped by Soviet officers arrived at the scene of the tragedy. In Estonia today this episode of world war II called the “Czech hell”.

the history of the Estonian Grenadier division of the SS

Immediately after the attack on the USSR, the leadership of the Reich has decided to recruit volunteers among the representatives of the Baltic peoples. Initially, the battalions of Estonians were used for counter-insurgency operations and security camps, but in the autumn of 1942 began the set in the Estonian SS Legion. The volunteers joined the people of the police battalions. In the spring of 1943, after additional mobilization of 5,000 people, the Legion was deployed in SS volunteer brigade.

Together with other Estonian parts of the brigade operated in Belarus, which was marked by tough punitive actions against local residents. In the winter of 1944, the division was reformed into the 20th Grenadier division of the SS number up to 15 thousand fighters. Estonians fought against the red army in the operation of the Narva and the battle of Tallinn, which suffered particularly large losses. Retreating from Estonia to East Prussia, the division was surrounded, but escaped and was sent to Silesia, on the border with the Czech Republic.

Estonian SS in Czech Republic

In early may 1945 in the ranks were 3 000 soldiers and officers who were in the area of Polish towns of Gliwice and Sewage. Estonian historians claim that from the personnel of the unit, only a third were volunteers, others were called by force during the German retreat to the West. It is also believed that these people were not involved in war crimes.

may 7, 1945, broken and demoralized division moved to the Czech town of Jablonec nad NISOh then went to Pilsen to surrender to U.S. forces. On the road the SS collided with a local Czech partisans who demanded to surrender their weapons. Demoralized Estonians have carried out their orders, but later began the mass massacre of Nazi soldiers of local resistance and local residents, angry at the invaders.

Czech hell

the German Reich had signed the surrender, but ordinary people who survived the German occupation, were eager to take revenge on the accomplices of Hitler. May 10, Estonians hated all black SS uniform is not just to beat, but shot straight at roadsides and on the banks of the river Nisa.

One of the survivors, SS unterscharführer Harald Nugiseks, recalled: “the Front has collapsed, and we were trying to get to the West. But in uniform nowhere to hide. The Czechs have twice put me against the wall, but from the shooting I was saved. Mounted machine gun, but suddenly flew Russian planes, and these do not know someone well, and let’s skedaddle, and so are we. And three days later we still caught again”. Modern Czech estimates, were killed from 400 to 1 000 SS Legionnaires, but Estonian historians say about 1 400 dead. All agree that stopped the carnage Soviet officers.

the Russian saved Estonians

the Surviving legionaries recalled that during the shootings near drove car with Soviet officers, which ran the SS major by the name of Suurkivi. He spoke in Russian and began to explain the situation, emphasizing that all of them are Estonians, and citizens of the USSR. One of the officers protested that kill, as he put it, “our people” and, drawing his revolver, walked over to the Czechs.

the Guerrillas could not argue with Soviet officers, and executions stopped, but the Czechs started to say that all Estonians SS men and war criminals, and therefore we should kill them. To this the officers replied that the war is over and the Nazis will understand court. The surviving Legionnaires was transferred to the filtration camps and in November 1946 they were released to go home. Subsequently, Egyptstevani was only the SS men, whose guilt was proved during the investigation. The majority of Nazi collaborators have come out in the September of the Amnesty of 1953.

current estimate

In modern Estonia who fought on the German side of the Estonians glorify, forgetting that their hands have committed war crimes and killing civilians. Historian Peete Claasic calls the guerrillas “crime against humanity”. Estonian non-governmental organizations demand that the Czech Republic recognition of the “genocide” and compensation for the relatives of those killed in the executions of legionaries.

Alexander Brazhnik

© Russian Seven

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