History 02/01/20 “Brothers-Slavs” against the Russians: how they fought for Hitler
Despite the fact that Nazi policy was proclaimed by the Eastern European peoples racially “inferior”, a significant number of the Slavs took part in the “crusade against communism”, started by Hitler in 1941. How fought in the USSR, Slavic allies of the Third Reich?
having Occupied Czechoslovakia in 1939, the Germans recognized the independence of the Slovak Republic, whose President was the Catholic priest Jozef Tiso. 4 days after the German attack on the Soviet Union formed the Bratislava Slovak expeditionary force consisting of two infantry divisions and a brigade. The initiative of its dispatch to the Eastern front belonged to Josef Tiso. He was interested in “different” to Hitler in order to bring Slovakia its southern land occupied Hungary. Not without hesitation, the Fuhrer agreed.
Russia sent 45 thousand Slovaks, commanded by General Ferdinand Catlos a proven track record of previously successful actions against the poles.
During the blitzkrieg in Ukraine, the Slovaks have suffered great losses. A particularly effective unit was the so-called brigade Pilfousek created from motorized parts and including a tank battalion. Starting fights near Lviv, the team came to Kiev, passing through Vinnitsa, Berdichev and Zhitomir.
As a separate unit of the Slovak expeditionary force existed until August 1941. After its disbandment, the two Slovak divisions began to dispose of the commanders of the German armies.
1st Slovak motorized division fought in southern Russia and suffered heavy losses during the retreat from the Volga and the don in the winter of 1943. Subsequently, the Slovaks were defeated by the red Army near Melitopol. Two thousand citizens of the Slavic republics were captured by the Russian.
2-I the Slovak security division wasrucano to resist the partisans in Belarus, but this task Slovaks failed, began to desert EN masse. Hitler’s fears were confirmed – many Slovaks began to “fraternize” with the enemy. In 1943 they were disarmed and sent to build military facilities in Italy.
Croats, along with other South Slavic peoples, Hitler was considered to be Dinaric race, however, sympathized with the Croatian nationalists, the ustashe. After the occupation of Yugoslavia has been created Independent state of Croatia, which actually ruled the leader of the ustashe Ante Pavelic. Like Tiso, after declaring war, the Soviet Union, he offered Hitler his services.
on June 24 throughout Croatia were hung ads on the recruitment of soldiers for the war in Russia. This appeal, contrary to the expectations of the authorities, aroused the enthusiasm of the population. Just applied to 9 of thousands of volunteers (Catholic and Muslim by religion), more than half of which in the end was rejected. The final composition of the Croatian military units sent to the East consisted of 3900 people. Officially it was called the 369-th Croatian reinforced infantry regiment. Along with this South Slavic fighters were called Croatian Legion and the Devil’s division. The last name can be considered symbolic – Yugoslav historians, in particular, Alexander Jovanovic, evidence of numerous war crimes of the Croats in the occupied territories.
To the Ukraine regiment arrived in the autumn of 1941. Like the Slovaks, the Croats fought mainly in the South of Russia. The regiment was involved in the command of the Wehrmacht during the attack on Stalingrad, which was perceived by soldiers as a recognition of their merits. In the battle for the city the Red Army almost completely destroyed the Croats. Of the remaining 10% of Croatian volunteers, the Germans formed the 369 th infantry division, which was soon sent to the territory of Yugoslavia.
according to the historian Oleg Romanko, the Germans thought highly of the fighting efficiency of the Croatian Legion. None of the soldiers deserted him for the time the existence of the unit. The locals Croats saw the brothers hated Orthodox Serbs.
in Addition to land there were also Croatian aviation Legion, which consisted of two squadrons – bomber and fighter. On account of the first of them from 1941 to 1943 – 1332 sorties. The fighters in 1941-44 made more than 5 thousand sorties, knocking 259 Soviet aircraft (the Croats lost only 16 planes).
In total, according to researchers, on the Eastern front fought 7640 citizens NGKH, more than half of them died.
the Third Bulgarian Empire, as an ally of Germany, did not declare war on the USSR. Moreover, official diplomatic relations with the Soviet Union Sofia supported until September 1944, when the Red Army entered the territory of Bulgaria.
King Boris III, fearing that his Pro-Russian-minded citizens will rebel, strongly deviated from the requirements of Hitler to commit troops to send to the Eastern front, limited assistance to the Germans in the Balkans. He did not agree with the further proposal of Himmler to provide volunteers for the Waffen-SS.
In Runet there are allegations that several hundred fighters from Bulgaria, mainly members of right-wing organizations, joined the ranks of the SS in 1943. However, most historians mention only formed in late 1944, the Bulgarian anti-tank brigade of the Waffen SS. In the Soviet Union for obvious reasons to fight, she could not.
However, the Bulgarian troops participated in the occupation of the Soviet Union – as the guards of sanitary trains of the Bulgarian red cross to provide medical aid to the wounded Germans. There are a lot of photos, which the Bulgarian military trains walking on the streets captured by the Nazis and cities celebrate the holidays together with the invaders.
© Russian Seven
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