Family Hostages

Posted: August 2, 2010 in World War 2

Hitler’s order on March 8th, 1945: Anyone captured without being wounded or without having fought to the limit of his powers, has forfeited his honor. He is expelled from the fellowship of decent & brave soldiers. His dependents will be held responsible.

Enforcement:

The combination of depleted units, & the deployment of youthful & inadequate reinforcements, have had an untoward effect on morale. Moreover, the front is so wide that the influence of officers & Party Officials is no longer as effective as it might be. Hence the danger of desertion has increased, & preventative measures are urgently needed. One of our Armies has accordingly asked that the measures regarding the arrest of family-hostages be made known to the troops. It should, however, be remembered that the threat of arresting dependents has lost much of its force, particularly when the families concerned are in enemy-occupied territory.

Signed: Hausser, Commander of Army Group G.

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