Hitler's order regarding Commandos
No. 003830/42g. Kdos. OWK/Wst F. H. Qu 18. 10. 1942
Copy No. 12
- For a long time now, our enemies have been focusing on waging war with methods that are contrary to the international Geneva Convention. Members of the units, called Commandos and characterized by special brutality and intrigue, are recruited from criminal elements in their homeland, or even from exiles liberating enemy territory. The seized documents show that these individuals are not only ordered not to take prisoners, but also to kill unarmed soldiers who may place an unnecessary burden on them or may hinder them in the successful performance of their tasks. Orders were found in which the killing of prisoners was even required.
- Following the amendment of the Army Order of 7 October 1942, where this fact has already been mentioned, Germany will in the future apply the same methods against these sabotage groups of the English and their allies, ie wherever these units appear, they should be German units. ruthlessly destroyed.
- That is why I order:
From today, all members of the so-called Commandos troops, attacking German troops in Europe and Africa, will be exterminated to the last man. This order must be carried out, whether it be soldiers in uniform or saboteurs, with or without weapons, and whether they are fighting or trying to escape, as well as whether to take action from the deck of a ship, plane or parachute. Even if these individuals will be exposed and will want to give up, they will not take anyone captive without mercy. Therefore, this report was created by the General Staff to inform all senior officers.
- Should members of the Commandos, such as agents, saboteurs, etc., fall into the hands of the armed forces in another way, such as being handed over by the police in the occupied territories, they must be handed over to the SD without delay. It is strictly forbidden to detain them in military custody, eg in a prisoner of war camp, etc.
- This order does not apply to the treatment of those enemy soldiers who will be captured or surrendered during regular combat, ie during a normal operation, a broad-based attack, during a main landing or airborne operation. This order also does not apply to those soldiers who fall into our hands during combat at sea, or to soldiers shot down during aerial combat who are rescued by parachute.
- I will hold all commanders and officers subject to military law accountable for any failure to comply with this order, whether by failing to inform my troops or by acting in violation of it.
signed by A. Hitler
HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMY SECRET
No. 551781 / 42G.K. Chefs WFSt / Qu. FH Qu. 19/10/42
Copy No. 21
The attached order of the Führer is sent in connection with the liquidation of enemy terrorist and sabotage units.
This order is intended only for commanding officers and under no circumstances may it fall into the hands of the enemy.
Further dissemination of this document is strictly limited.
The Chiefs of Staff listed in the distribution list are responsible for ensuring that all parts or extracts from this order that are printed are returned with this copy and destroyed.
Chief of General Staff
signed by A. Jodl
Hitler's Commando Order - https://www.combinedops.com/Hitlers_Commando_Order.htm
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