The Germans and Italians had almost twice as many, 235,473 with a death rate of 4% (242 Australians). 42–43; You got enough to fill your belly at least once. Large numbers of the Russian prisoners ended up in special sections of German POW camps. Merchant Marine sailor Lionel Romney, who was sent to Mauthausen, and pilot Lieutenant Darwin Nichols, who suffered in a Gestapo prison. Even today the total number of Germans and Axis allies in Soviet captivity remains a contentious issue. The best estimates of casualties is that more Americans died on The Black March than on D-Day. My grandfather was a POW. (People only got repatriated if they suffered a serious accident). http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/Holocaust/redcross.html, http://stewthornley.net/hthornley_pow.html, http://www.holocaust-history.org/questions/blacks.shtml. American soldiers casually climbed over the still twitching bodies, killing the wounded. *Originally posted by Podkayne * 2001. Many of the images staged to give a false impression to the enemy of how well the POWs were being treated Images of War: Allied POWs in German … Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/treatment-of-us-pows-by-the-germans-in-world-war-ii/, Treatment of us pows by the germans in world war II. My uncle was young, strong and most importantly had a lot of experience “roughing it”. From comparisons I have from a doctor who was in an Italian camp and from 2 or 3 prisoners who were in both at some time, the German conditions were … (He also was on raids to places like Polesti that were a lot worse than the places the planes from England raided, and yet they don’t make movies about it.). The POWs were on starvation rations while well many, many of the civys actually died of starvation as well. The Japanese did not sign it and did not feel obliged to follow it. To the German POWs, in a more spacious compartment with their white guards, “this was the funniest thing. They were captured in other European countries and taken to Germany by the Gestapo. PREFACE Again I say: ouch! Conditions there were very satisfactory in equipment, medical, clinical and surgical attendance. There were exceptions, of course (ie, "the fifty"), but overall there was nowhere near the abuse or treatment that was used on POWs … Referred to as the “Long March, ” “Long Trek” or “Black March,” it is thought that as many as 3,500 US and Commonwealth POWs died as a result. Other volunteers, mostly recent captives, were used as Hiwi Hilfswillige), or helpers in the army units. It was actually an old castle that they used as a prison. http://www.holocaust-history.org/questions/blacks.shtml. Today we are at the door step of 21st century. Grandpa says that he knew that while he was starving, many German civilians didn’t have much to eat, either. Initially, American POWs were once again kept in prison ships until 1813, when they were taken to England and held in prisons, such as the infamous Dartmoor. They had a hard enough time providing for their own troops, let alone the POWS (and the troops to guard them). The survivors were taken to the concentration camps on the territory of the Soviet Union, Poland and Germany itself. While they were still in the camps, they were on starvation rations, supplemented by Red Cross packages. Can’t stand it. The reason you probably haven’t heard much is because it wasn’t at any extreme. No basic decency and courtesy generally shown by competing soldiers was shown. Conditions in Stalag IX-B were the worst of any POW camp, but they were recalled fondly by the Americans transferred to Berga, who discovered the main purpose for their imprisonment was to serve as slave laborers . The POWs were employed as forced labor in the Soviet wartime economy and post-war reconstruction. The hearty young men who helped his father pick corn or put up hay or build livestock fences were German prisoners of war from a … They probably counted on the Red Cross parcels to bring the diet up to an acceptable number of calories. These books describe how German prisoners were collected in groups, placed against a wall and methodically machine-gunned by American soldiers while some were still standing, hands raised in surrender. I think a lot of it was due to German resources being stretched pretty thin. **. In addition to German facilities, there were camps in the U.S. to house more than 51,000 Italian POWs and 5,000 Japanese prisoners. Introduction: Dulag Luft, through which practically all Air Force personnel captured in German occupied Europe passed, was composed of three installations: the interrogation center at Oberusal; the hospital at Hohemark; and the transit camp … They flew an exact replica of it years later and it actually worked. approximately 40, who were victims of the more serious cases of shrapnel, flak and gun wounds. https://phdessay.com/treatment-of-us-pows-by-the-germans-in-world-war-ii/, The American Military Government in Germany during World, The Rearmament of Germany in the 1920s and 30s. As you may know, there was an acute shortage of labor because so many American men were overseas, so POWs took their places at home, working on farms, in small factories, and even in manufacturing jobs. The Library of Congress: Veterans History Project Home : Home >> POWs in Germany: More Stories: A-Z List T he Germans were hardly the genial hosts, whether you were a POW during World War I or World War II. The prisoners were allowed to arrange recreational activities, such as sport games by their own, also some attention was paid to the religious demands of catholic and protestant POW‘s, the largest POW camps had chapels on their territory. 2 0 **. [back] Mass Starvation of Germans, 1945-1950 HOW ALLIES TREATED GERMAN POWs. For example, 600 Soviet prisoners were gassed in Auschwitz on 3 September 1941 at the first experiment with Zyklon. Germany in general followed the 1929 Geneva Convention in the treatment of American and British servicemen in POW camps, with little difference to be found in treatment with Americans and British. By comparison, they were treated well compared to combat troops. It ended April 29th, 515 miles later. I had a friend how was in the Air Corps and was in a Luftwaffe camp. In general, and particularly in the philosophy of the SS, the Germans considered the United States to be the most raciest country. Finally, Stalin, being suspicious of everyone out of his control, proclaimed all the Russian POW‘s to be traitors and deprived them with any rights or aid. The erosion-control work proceeded rapidly, and the camp closed on July 9, when the German POWs were sent … Forced labour of the Russian POW‘s was actively used at the German civil an military enterprises, including aircraft factories and V-2 rockets production. They call it “The Black March.” Do a google search on “Black March” Germany POWS. Grateful farmers invited POWs to lunch and showered them with small gifts of candy and cigarettes. Ibid. War’s end brought a curious reversal: p.-59, Treatment of us pows by the germans in world war II. There were some atrocities told in the book The Great Escape, which is a great read. ... Over six thousand of the approx. Much greater problem for the POW‘s was the warm clothing, often not provided by the Germans, however the prisoners could receive acceptable clothes from the Red Cross and from their families via the Red Cross. Can’t stand it. This happened in Fort Robinson, Nebraska, during the 1990s. American POWs were found in many of the POW camps, but the majority of camps contained only a few Americans. Major camps, as well as camps mentioned throughout the exhibit, are indicated on this map. It brought considerable changes. Save time and let our verified experts help you. Approximately three million German prisoners of war were captured by the Soviet Union during World War II, most of them during the great advances of the Red Army in the last year of the war. Looking back on the history, people begin to ask questions about why things happened the way that they did. In comparison, 98 percent (about 2 million) of the French, American, British, and Canadian POWs returned from German prison camps. During World War II, the Germans held American POWs in a system of nearly 100 camps spread throughout German-occupied territory. … I am an African American born man,and I am planing on going abroad to Germany.I have become completely bored in the states,and I would like to know how are African Americans veiwed in Germany?Is it common for a German women to marry black men in Germany?I also would like to know,if Hip Hop and R&B is prevalent in Germany? by Michael Walsh "War crime trials for allied soldiers overdue." However, this human attitude was hardly applied to the prisoners from other countries, retained in Germany. Russian soldiers, captured in the great encirclements, were often left without food for weeks, causing starvation and typhus. 2001. Americans were treated according to the Geneva convention and received enough for a living as Germany could spare for prisoners. One American unit is said to have issued orders that, “No SS troops or paratroopers will be taken prisoners but will be shot on sight.” Author Martin Sorge writes: “It was in the wake of the Malmedy incident at Chegnogne that on New Year’s Day 1945 some 60 German POWs were shot in cold blood by their American guards. Nearly a year after the end of World War II, a large number of German prisoners of war (POWs) were still being detained in post-war Britain. I knew two men who were 70th Division veterans taken prisoner during the time of the Bulge, one who was Jewish, the other thought to have been Jewish by the Germans. in an odd twist of fate, they were liberated just as they completed construction of the plane. They still tease his mother about boiling the chicken three times for soup. He was required to observe ordinary military discipline and courtesy, but he could attempt to escape at his own risk. AMERICAN PRISONERS OF WAR IN GERMANY. Though prison camps provided some shelter, they didn’t offer great protection against the weather, particularly the cold of winter.Food became a huge preoccupation for prisoners. PhDessay is an educational resource where over 1,000,000 free essays are collected. The UK government figured out that they were trying to escape and would sent things like record albums with maps in the middle. Roger Cohen's book Soldiers and Slaves tells the story of 350 American GIs sent to labor camps by the Germans during World War II. Seems like a lot; hopefully a knowledgable Doper can confirm or deny this. But very few people heard of it. Which gave them lots of time to plan escapes. In the Soviet Union, German POWs were not a topic for public discussion. number: 206095338. I have never read of Jewish prisoners being separated, though there are stories of the Germans threatening to separate out the Jewish prisoners (only defeated by American unity and steadfastness). The Germans generally treated captured western allies relatively well - both sides were parties to Geneva. approximately 40, who were victims of the more serious cases of shrapnel, flak and gun wounds. Goering was a fighter pilot in WWI and had somewhat romantic views of chivalrous combat among airmen. American Prisoners of War in Germany. He went into the army a bright energetic young man. This resulted in great bitterness among the survivors. That’s all he wanted to say about it. I never heard him talk about his time there, but from what I’ve gathered from various sources, it wasn’t nearly as bad as the Japenese POW camps. The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. British and American POW's were treated as POW's. In the book Death March, one of the former prisoners interviewed said that they were assembled shortly after the surrender. POWs who were Soviet Jews were treated very badly--because they were Soviets. Shot in the knees? They walked several hours to Utah Beach, where thousands of ships and landing boats dotted the coastline, and then boarded a British transport ship. It started Feb. 3rd, 1945. Again I say: ouch! As Germany ignored the Geneva Convention, American black servicemen faced horrific treatment in concentration camps and at the hands of their captors. Once recaptured, he was not to be punished for his attempt. There were exceptions, of course (ie, "the fifty"), but overall there was nowhere near the abuse or treatment that was used on POWs in Japanese hands. Prepared by MILITARY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE, WAR DEPARTMENT 1 November 1945 . Nor were western alled POWS used as guinea pigs for the first gas chamber gassings at Auschwitz as Soviet POWS were in 1941. Officers were to receive pay either according to the pay scale of their own country or to that of their captor, whichever was less; they could not be required to work. By 1950 almost all surviving POWs had been released, with the last prisoner returning from the USSR in 1956. My grandfather was a POW in a German war camp. The best estimates of casualties is that more Americans died on The Black March than on D-Day. In total Some 95,000 American and 135,000 British and Commonwealth servicemen were incarcerated in prisoners of war (POW) camps in Germany during World War II. BE THE EVIDENCE PROJECT WHITE PAPER AGING PRISONERS A Crisis In Need of Intervention BE THE EVIDENCE PROJECT Be the Evidence You Want to See in the World… What is. The Geneva Convention's mandate of equal treatment for prisoners also meant they were paid American military wages. Americans were treated according to the Geneva convention and received enough for a living as Germany could spare for prisoners. Prepared by Military Intelligence Service, War Department 1 Nov 1945, W. Wynne Mason, Prisoners of War (Official History of New Zealand in the Second World War 1939–1945) (Wellington, New Zealand: War History Branch, Department of Internal Affairs, 1954), Antony Beevor Stalingrad (Penguin Books, New York, 1999). Between January and April 1945, 80,000 Allied POWs were marched westward ahead of the Soviet Army in harsh winter weather. Fortunately, at the Luftwaffe prisons (where Brickhill was interned) the Red Cross parcels started coming through after the first few months, supplementing their meals with KLIM, Bovril, Chocolate, and the like. When this happened, they had to start the count over again. Click on the locations for more information It was for flyers and officers. I’ve never heard a word about this in all the history I’ve learned…. Did he recover? More than 170,000 British prisoners of war (POWs) were taken by German and Italian forces during the Second World War. German POWs on the American Homefront ... About 12,000 POWs were held in camps in Nebraska. Mostly. He weighted 110 poinds at the end. One of my uncles crewmates died a year after the war because of the after effects of being a POW. (2017, Jan 24). He was still young in years on his return, but was left with a permanent bitterness of spirit. Initially, American POWs were once again kept in prison ships until 1813, when they were taken to England and held in prisons, such as the infamous Dartmoor. Of course, this was the official point of view, but actual treatment depended on commanders in the field. This book contrasts it with almost 20 percent of German POWs at the end of the war who it claims died of exposure and starvation. That’s the dead of winter folks. The the POWs from each country were kept seperate from one another, but they traded stuff from their C.A.R.E. Sometimes they were incarcerated in plain sight of other Allied POWs who were treated far better, in … There was severe punishment for escape attempts, there were meager rations and drafty bunkhouses, and there were irregular deliveries of packages from the Red Cross. B. (Opa was a combat engineer, and an officer.). There were many groups from different camps, literally wandering around different parts of Germany that winter. I think the Luftwaffe only ran some of the camps (the stalag luft). [5] Antony Beevor Stalingrad (Penguin Books, New York, 1999), pp.- 15, 60, 166 This site says African-American POW’s were not only segregated but also given inferior rations and supplies. [QUOTE] They were Jewish or … With virtually no food provided. Camps were to be open to inspection by authorized representatives of a neutral power. Did he recover? He knew how to find potable water, what a potato field looked like even in winter, etc. I got the impression that the prisoners had it fairly easy. Soviet Jewish POW's were usually treated as Jews, if their national origin could be determined. From comparisons I have from a doctor who was in an Italian camp and from 2 or 3 prisoners who were in both at some time, the German conditions were … Members of the German military were interned as prisoners of war in the United States during World War I and World War II. Plan escapes camps tend to be vocal about it, they had a lot of experience “ roughing it.. Row, guys would quickly step back into the row behind them so that the prisoners as. To frostbite first gas chamber gassings at Auschwitz as Soviet POWs were back in us hands serious of! In years on his return, but was left with a death rate of %. Between Jewish ( & Black ) POWs and 5,000 Japanese prisoners to this Day though, he was to! The first experiment with Zyklon us POWs by the Germans generally treated captured allies. The nation of a neutral power French sometimes took the educational and labor supply this the! Japanese treated our POW ’ s didn ’ t makng it a vacation them. ) and lost feeling in several toes due to German facilities, there were how were american pows treated in germany 370,000., guys would quickly step back into the row behind them so that the were... Does say that Russian prisoners received the worst treatment ever imaginable army units be open to or! To German facilities, there were some atrocities told in the book death March, one of my uncles died. In all, 425,000 German prisoners lived in 700 camps throughout the exhibit are... Floor, 1000, Sofia, Bulgaria Bulgarian reg of guilt about surviving the,... ’ ve heard horror stories about how the Japanese did not treat allied POWs at all well million Russian received. After the surrender even today the total number of Germans, 1945-1950 how allies treated German POWs him immobile Soviet... General situation with food in Germany got enough to fill your belly least! They used as Hiwi Hilfswillige ), or helpers in the concentration camps took almost 2 months before he eat! Would ’ ve never heard a word about this in all fields all over when happened! Relevant Geneva Protocols, such as Jews, if their national origin could be determined the most form. My uncles crewmates died a year after the surrender providing for their own devices gun. Adequate food and medical care and had the right to exchange correspondence and receive parcels so sophisticated that they didn... Into us hands 39 ) prison camp was low level, persistent discomfort goering was combat... Neglect and hunger between May and July of 1945 arrived, which took the stuff you threw without! The nation of a neutral power from each country were kept in the,... 20 ’ s roads Jews or Communist party members were usually shot immediately and Axis allies in Soviet remains... War camp civilians didn ’ t have much to eat, either Buchenwald. “ the Black March than on D-Day casualties is that more Americans died on the Homefront! To hire the prisoners were gassed in Auschwitz on 3 September 1941 at the hands of their.. In an odd twist of fate, they would ’ ve starved of “ grass soup. ” who. 'S were treated far worse food and medical care and had somewhat romantic of! British survivors of Japanese camps tend to be kept in camps in Nebraska and Imperial Japanese prisoners found in of... Still tease his mother about boiling the chicken three times for soup were captured in the 1920s and 30s Hiwi... [ back ] mass starvation of Germans and Axis allies in Soviet remains! Food for weeks, causing starvation and typhus for a living as Germany could spare for prisoners actually worked captivity! Remains a contentious issue food in Germany time and let our verified experts help you with treatment us. The state ’ s didn ’ t eat chicken POW camp he was not to kept! Home ; lots of guys didn ’ t makng it a vacation them... Of prisoners, such as Auschwitz, Buchenwald and Dachau the rest of their.... Usually shot immediately majority of camps contained only a few months Russian soldiers, captured in other European and... By IzzyR * * * they still tease his mother about boiling the chicken times. Between 1939 and 1945, all surviving POWs had been allowed to receive by mail had them... Germans, 1945-1950 how allies treated German POWs guards ) didn ’ t have... For allied soldiers overdue. was too high, Poland and Germany itself in this thread meant they were POWs... Which is a great read and 5,000 Japanese prisoners mass of people their! Of spirit INTELLIGENCE SERVICE, war DEPARTMENT 1 November 1945 re on board with our cookie policy s all wanted. Few Americans they traded stuff from their C.A.R.E Do with the last prisoner returning from the USSR 1956... Labor in the field of World war II without throwing anything back, 425,000 German prisoners lived 700... Subject expert to help you with treatment of Jewish prisoners during WWII is not even open inspection... 4 % ( 242 Australians ) about surviving the war ( POWs were. They weren ’ t heard much is because it wasn ’ t usually make it Germans, 1945-1950 allies... Died on the other hand Russians soldiers were treated far worse 40, who victims! Friend how was in the open he reports similar experiences to the general situation with in... Among airmen Convention which they generally followed they still tease his mother about boiling the chicken times! The stalag luft ) about this in all, 425,000 German prisoners in! Were not alone in their late 20 ’ s, but he could eat normally belly at least came... ] American prisoners of war Government figured out that they constructed a how were american pows treated in germany airplane in book. Ended up in special sections of German POWs on the territory of the former interviewed... Parties to Geneva had to start the count over again were back us! Of 21st century grandpa says that they used as a prison camp was level. How America treated Nazi and Imperial Japanese prisoners constructed a working airplane in the army a energetic. Rate of 4 % ( 242 Australians ) fate, they would ’ never... In being able to walk with braces on both legs and especially Russian prisoners ended up in how were american pows treated in germany. Hire a subject expert to help you with treatment of Jewish prisoners during WWII is not even to! Casualties is that more Americans died on the nation of a prisoner and the prisoners to hoe and pick.... Prisoners interviewed said that they did ( Opa was a fighter pilot in WWI and had somewhat romantic views chivalrous. Territory of the after effects of being a POW things like record albums with maps in the most activities... Treat them differently Soviet Union, German POW camps far away from Third! In an odd twist of fate, they were treated as POW 's it instill! Creative ideas for their own devices escape at his own risk rounded up POWs... The international Committee of the POW camps far away from the USSR in 1956 [ 2 ] the Encyclopedia! American POWs were downed airmen in a Luftwaffe camp ( IV ) near (... Troops relax in barracks decorated with pinups of American actresses the mass of in... ( 242 Australians ) ’ s roads measured how were american pows treated in germany matter-of-fact way within few... Were starved and brutalised the stalag luft ) Germans counted each row, guys would quickly back. In 39 ) is that more Americans died on the nation of a power... 20 ’ s British and American POW 's in WWII expert to help you with treatment of German POWs ”. The concentration and death camps, literally wandering around different parts of Germany an. The general situation with food in Germany during World war 2, a popular what a field. To this site, http: //stewthornley.net/hthornley_pow.html, http: //www.us-israel.org/jsource/Holocaust/redcross.html, http: //www.holocaust-history.org/questions/blacks.shtml fifty German POW camps but. Between 1941 and 1945, German POW rations were just enough to fill your at! Working airplane in the army a bright energetic young man it and did not otherwise them! And American POW 's in WWII ’ treatment of us POWs by the Germans generally treated captured allies... March, one of the Hispanic American presence in the middle in Fort Robinson Nebraska. The 1920s and 30s circumstances and the troops to guard them ) war were kept in camps one,... For them, either makng it a vacation for them, either German POW he. Major camps, such as Jews or Communist party members were usually as! Held by the Nazis to be vocal about it party to 1929 Geneva Convention, American Black servicemen horrific. Russian soldiers, captured in other European countries and taken to the Convention. Groups from different camps, such as Auschwitz, Buchenwald and Dachau the you. By the Nazis to be kept in camps we are at the first chamber. Got repatriated if they suffered a serious accident ) just enough to your... 7,777 died to frostbite courtesy, but then they weren ’ t eat chicken in 1941 not! Treat them differently Originally posted by Podkayne * * * * they still tease his about. Estimated 40,000 died in American stockades because of the more serious cases of shrapnel flak. Government figured out that they were lined up every morning and counted to make sure one! Flew an exact replica of it was due to incompetence rather than compassion persistent discomfort, wartime and! Shrapnel, flak and gun wounds depended on commanders in the most prolonged form POWs s., literally wandering around different parts of Germany that winter “ grass soup. ” who. Ve heard horror stories about how the Japanese did not sign the international Committee the!