Α)Germany Still Paying Pensions For WWII Spanish Volunteers Who Went To War For Hitler

Spanish (1)

In 1962 Germany came to an agreement with the Spanish dictator, Francisco Franco, that Germany would support volunteers that signed up to fight for Hitler, and against Russia, in the years between 1941 and 1943.  Nazi Germany and Mussolini’s Fascist Italy had helped Franco to win the Spanish Civil War in 1939 and at the end of the war Franco did not bring Spain into the war but he did permit volunteers to sign up to Hitler’s forces, provided they fought only against Russia.

In 1941, 47,000 volunteers enlisted in the División Española de Voluntarios, or Blue Division, and fought for Nazi Germany on the eastern front against Russia.   German estimates of the casualties suffered by the Blue Division were 22,000 killed, wounded or declared missing in action during the war – numbers that are contested by other sources, who put Spanish casualties at 5,000.

Combat history

On 31 July, after taking the standard personal oath to Hitler, under whose authority they were to be fighting, the Blue Division was formally incorporated into the Wehrmacht as the 250th Division. It was initially assigned to Army Group Center, the force advancing towards Moscow.


The division was transported by train to Suwałki, Poland (August 28), from where it had to continue by foot on a 900 km march. It was scheduled to travel through Grodno (Belarus), Lida (Belarus), Vilnius (Lithuania), Molodechno (Belarus), Minsk (Belarus), Orsha (Belarus) to Smolensk, and from there to the Moscow front. While marching towards the Smolensk front on September 26, the Spanish volunteers were rerouted from Vitebsk and reassigned to Army Group North (the force closing on Leningrad), becoming part of the German 16th Army.

The Blue Division was first deployed on the Volkhov River front, with its headquarters in Grigorovo, on the outskirts of Novgorod. It was in charge of a 50 km section of the front north and south of Novgorod, along the banks of the Volkhov River and Lake Ilmen. According to the museum curator in the Spasa Preobrazheniya church on Ilyin Street, the division used the high cupola as a machine-gun nest. As a result, much of the building was seriously damaged, including many of the medieval icons by Theophanes the Greek.

n August 1942, it was transferred north to the southeastern flank of the Leningrad siege, just south of the Neva near Pushkin, Kolpino and Krasny Bor in the Izhora River area.

After the collapse of the German southern front following the Battle of Stalingrad, more German troops were deployed southwards. By this time, General Emilio Esteban Infantes had taken command.

The Blue Division faced a major Soviet attempt to break the siege of Leningrad in February 1943, when the Soviet Army 55, reinvigorated after the epic victory at Stalingrad, attacked the Spanish positions at the Battle of Krasny Bor, near the main Moscow-Leningrad road. Despite heavy casualties, the Spaniards were able to hold their ground against a Russian force seven times larger and supported by tanks. The assault was contained and the siege of Leningrad was maintained for a further year. The division remained on the Leningrad front where it continued to suffer heavy casualties due to weather and to enemy action. When Franco dispatched more reinforcements, this time it included conscripts as well as volunteers.

Through rotation, as many as 45,482 Spanish soldiers served on the Eastern Front. They were awarded both Spanish and German military awards, and were the only division to be awarded a medal of their own, commissioned by Hitler.


This agreement and the pension costs to the German economy associated with it were highlighted in a written reply to a parliamentary question raised by left-wing MP Mr Andrej Hunko.  The reply stated that on an annual basis the German government support for the old Blue Division still covers 41 veterans who were wounded, eight widows of former fighters, and one orphan, at a total cost of €107,352, The Telegraph reports.

Mr. Hunko, a member of The Left (Die Linke) party, was incensed, saying it was “a scandal that 70 years after the war, Germany is still paying more than €100,000 a year to Nazi collaborators.  At that time, those people volunteered to join the German fascists to fight on their side in the war of extermination in Eastern Europe”.

He then went on to say that “For me it is incomprehensible that the German government should stick to those payments when so many victims of the war are still waiting today for their rightful compensation”.



Β)Hitler’s Mein Kampf Returns To German Book Shops


Mein Kampf has been variously described as a series of rants, or a stream of consciousness. Hitler didn’t write the book in the accepted sense of the word, he dictated it to Rudolf Hess – when he served a five-month prison sentence in Landsberg in 1923 and later at a Berchtesgaden inn.

The book reads almost like a political party manifesto, expounding Hitler’s thoughts on how the perfect society should be structured, and describing the methods – violent and non-violent – he thought necessary to achieve his aims. Hitler’s dreams of world domination are clearly evident, as is his conviction that this can only be brought about by violent suppression of what he calls ‘lower peoples’ by Aryans. Hitler says that “it is no accident that the first cultures arose in places where the Aryan, in his encounters with lower peoples, subjugated them and bent them to his will.”

The book is not an easy read, and when it was first published in 1924 it was not well received. Sales were poor, with people complaining that it was difficult to understand and rambling.

When Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, things changed. Mein Kampf became a ‘must have’ book, and by 1945 an estimated 12 million copies had been sold. It was a popular present for newlywed couples, and Hitler’s racial ideology was even taught in German schools. Mein Kampf made Hitler a wealthy man, although it is doubtful that many Germans read the book in its entirety.

At the end of the war, and after Hitler’s suicide the copyright in Mein Kampf became the property of the Bavarian government – Hitler’s residence at the time was in Munich. The State of Bavaria subsequently refused to allow further publication as a mark of respect for Holocaust victims and their families, and this decision was endorsed by the German Federal government. Selling the book commercially became illegal, although it was still legal to sell and purchase it privately as long as it doesn’t “promote hatred or war”.

70 years on, that is set to change. The copyright expires on 1st January 2016, when a new version of Mein Kampf will be sold in German bookshops, 70 years after the death of its author, the NBC News reports.

Academics at The German Institute of Contemporary History (IFZ) have been working on this heavily annotated version of the book, which contains over 3,700 comments analysing the original text.  According to the institute’s spokesperson Christian Hartmann, the annotations in the new version are “an attempt to destroy Hitler’s ideology completely.”



Γ)Germany Finally Removes Nazi Laws from its Legal Code

Prozess am "Volksgerichtshof" gegen Angeh”rige des Widerstandes vom 20.07.1944.

Like many other aspects of the German society, Nazis paid special heed towards the justice system to compliment their evil motives.  Adolf Hitler authorized a number of significant amendments and additions in the country’s legal code, so that it serves the Nazi’s policies in the country. A number of terms were ‘crudely’ defined in order to a accommodate Nazi agenda and to keep an iron grip on the society.

The remnants of the Nazi legal code has survived in the German legal system with Nazi defined lexicons and terminologies. Germany is now prepared to not only revise all outdated and simply absurd terms from the legal system, but also to abolish them altogether.

This purge has been made possible as a result of a 900-page report prepared by a commission of legal experts, who recommended that a major revision is needed to purge the legal system off the Nazi signatures. The report was thoroughly read and approved by the Justice Minister Heiko Maas, who is determined to abolish all Nazi reflections from Germany’s code. He emphasized that Germany does not have to rely on the laws defined by Hitler and his team, and that country is very much capable to challenge and revise any such absurdities.

During the Second World War thousands of German citizens and soldiers were sentenced to death and executed on suspicion of treason and murder. This affair of defining and issuing death sentence ‘wholesale’ was supervised by so called ‘People’s Court’ run by Hitler’s closest aid Roland Freisler. Historians suggest that like many other Nazis, Friesler was a sadist and took great pleasure in issuing death sentence. In 1941 he presented a modified definition of ‘murder’ and ‘manslaughter’ to Hitler, who promptly authorized and gave Freisler a ‘license to kill’ his own soldiers and people, the Mirror reports.

According to the report presented to Justice Minister, these definitions were not only flawed but were intentionally twisted to serve Nazi’s agenda. Most of the crimes were defined on the assumption that the perpetrators were inherently criminals, and no attention was paid towards the nature and implication of the actual crime itself. This gave Freisler authority to deem the accused people as inherently wrong doers without any chance of being reformed or rehabilitated.

The decision of purging German legal code off Nazi’s terminologies has been widely welcomed by all sectors of German society. German Bar Association and Central Council of Jews in Germany hailed the reforms calling this a significant step forward towards a better peaceful Europe.


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