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Police Battalion 307

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Police Battalion 307 was a military unit of the Nazi Order Police during World War II. The battalion was actively involved in the Holocaust. It is responsible for the murder of 10,550 people and the deportation of another 63,400 people.[1]

History

Police Battalion 307

The Ordnungspolizei was able to take in a contingent of 26,000 undrafted conscripts born in 1909-1912 and 1918-20 to replace those leaving for the Wehrmacht (Feldgendarmerie, Polizei-Division)[2]. They were to be recruited as police recruits to meet the demand for police forces in the territories occupied by the Wehrmacht; the period of service to be completed was credited as a period of military service by decision of the Council of Ministers for Reich Defense (Ordinance on the Recruitment of Conscripts into the Protective Police of the Reich of 31 October 1939).[3]
The older police recruits were promised a lifelong position in the police force, they were given 6 months of police and military training in police barracks and then joined so-called “Wachtmeisterbataillone” (police battalions 301 to 325). For enlistment in police training battalions, the UK position was required by the responsible military district office, and the first training battalions could be established as early as March 1940. The training and leadership positions in the battalions were taken over by professional police officers.

The Police Battalion 307 was formed on 3 October 1940 from the Police Training Battalion “Lübeck” in Lübeck. From 5 October 1940 to 11 June 1941, the unit was deployed to the Generalgouvernement in Biała Podlaska. During this time the battalion was subordinated to the Lublin Police Regiment. Until spring 1941 it was responsible for deportations of Jews from the local ghetto to concentration camps and for shootings of Poles.[4][5]

Before the beginning of the invasion of the Soviet Union, the battalion was attached to the Mitte Police Regiment in June 1941 and stationed in Brest-Litovsk on 3 July 1941. In the area around Brest-Litovsk the battalion first shot 20 Russians and White Russians, especially communists. Then the police battalion 307 started mass arrests of 4000 to 6000 civilians, especially Jews. Finally, on July 13, 1941, 4,435 people were executed in the city by the police unit, about 4000 of them Jews and about another 400 civilians.[6][4]

In Baranavichy, mass arrests took place from 18 to 26 July 1941. 2000 to 3000 Jews and other civilians were arrested. In the process, the battalion members assumed that these people were to be executed. A higher officer of the Wehrmacht prevented the further execution of the measure.[7]

From 28 July to 12 August, the battalion was deployed in the area east of Sluzk with the 162nd Infantry Division and the 252nd Infantry Division.[8]

In August 1941, the battalion shot 30 to 50 women and 4 to 6 children in an unknown location near Sluzk. In the area between Sluzk and Babruysk 30 Jews were killed by the police unit in the same month.[9]

In mid-August 1941, the battalion was involved in executions of Jews in the town of Babruysk.[4]

Continuing its advance, the battalion reached Staryja Darohi on 19 August 1941.

I. Battalion of the Mitte Police Regiment

On 21 August 1941, the Mitte Police Regiment was reorganized. In the process, the Police Battalion 307 was also renamed I Battalion of the Mitte Police Regiment.[10]

On 31 August 1941, the battalion moved into Mogilev. While there, the battalion took part in combat operations under Army High Command 2 in the Mogilev-Babruysk area. In a village between Sluzk and Mogilev, a battalion member shot and killed two Russian farm workers. From September 1 to October 21, 1941 the battalion was also used against partisans, for example on September 4 in Babruysk, on September 11 at the runway from Babruysk to Mogilev and Klitschev.[11]

In the area of Klitschew, a town northeast of Babrujsk, the battalion carried out further executions in September and October 1941, killing 100 to 200 Jews.[4]

In October 1941, the battalion ravaged a village west of the Babruysk to Mogilev taxiway. In retaliation, all the Jews of the village were rounded up and 50 people, including women and children, were shot.[12]

From 22 October to December 1941 the battalion was again engaged against partisans, since 4 November 1941 in the Smolensk area.

From mid-December 1941 to 20 January 1942, the Police Battalion was deployed to the front at Kaluga as a unit attached to the 4th Army, where it suffered heavy casualties.[13]

From January to April 1942, the battalion was again deployed to the rear of Army Group Center in combat against partisans, such as in the Krytschau area. In the spring of 1942, the police battalion was replenished with forces from the disbanded police battalion 308 and received Duisburg as its new home base.[14]

In May 1942, the battalion was transferred to the Generalgouvernement at Rzeszów, where it arrived on 24 May.[15]

There, the battalion cleared the Tarnów ghetto on 11, 15, and 18 June 1942, deporting 10,000 Jews to the Belzec death camp. Another 10,000 Jews were immediately shot.[16]

I. Battalion of the Police Regiment 23

On 9 July 1942, the I Battalion of the Mitte Police Regiment, formerly Police Battalion 307, was renamed the I Battalion of Police Regiment 23.

On 7 and 15 July, 15,000 Jews were transported from the ghetto in Reichshof(Rzeszów) to the Belzec death camp. Finally, at the end of July and beginning of August, the ghetto in Przemyśl(Przemyśl) was cleared by the German police force, with 10,000 Jews being taken to Belzec; several hundred Jews unfit for transport were shot.[17]

On 18 August 1942, the battalion moved via Minsk to Glebokie for use against partisans. During this time, the battalion murdered Belarusian residents and Russian commissars. In the process, it was used as part of Operation Swamp Fever, which was carried out from August 21 to September 21, 1942, during which 389 partisans were killed in action, 1,274 “suspects” were executed, 8,350 Jews were executed, and 1,274 people were expelled.[18] Behind the term “gang suspects” were those people who lived in the villages of the area of operation and were arbitrarily shot.[19]

From 18 November 1942 to 27 November 1942, the battalion, led by Kampfgruppe von Gottberg, was deployed against partisans in the forest and swamp area around Glebokie in the General Commissariat of White Ruthenia (Unternehmen Nürnberg). In this operation 789 partisans and 353 “gang suspects”, 1,826 Jews and 7 Gypsies fell victim. In addition, three ghettos were liquidated, resulting in the deaths of at least another 3,800 Jews. Several villages were burned to the ground.[20]

From 10 December to 20 December 1942, the battalion took part in Unternehmen Hamburg, which was against partisans in an area where the Shchara River flows into the Nyemen, near Slonim. The unit was also subordinated to von Gottberg’s Kampfgruppe in this operation. A total of 1,676 partisans, 1,510 “gang suspects”, 2,658 Jews and 30 Gypsies were killed by the Kampfgruppe. Included in the number of Jews murdered are those 500 who were executed in the complete clearing of the ghetto in Slonim.[21] Since partisans were able to escape to the south during Unternehmen Hamburg, the area south of Slonim was searched from 22 to 25 December 1942 within the framework of Unternehmen Altona, in particular by Police Battalion 307. In the process, 97 partisans, 785 “gang suspects”, 126 Jews and 24 Gypsies were killed.[22]

From 7 January 1943 to 14 January 1943, the battalion was deployed as part of Unternehmen Franz, which was directed against partisans in the Cherven – Osipovichi area. The battalion took over the area of Grodsyanka, a village 55 kilometers northwest of Babruysk. In the course of this operation, a total of 1,143 partisans and 882 “gang suspects” were killed, about 1,000 people were deported for forced labor, and 2,000 cattle were confiscated.[23]

In both partial operations of Unternehmen Erntefest, which took place from 18 January to 26 January 1943 (Erntefest I) and from 28 January to 9 February 1943, the battalion participated as a unit of Kampfgruppe von Gottberg. During Operation Harvest Festival I the area of operations was east of the Minsk – Sluzk runway, then during Operation Harvest Festival II west of this road link. The units raged in the region. During the first part of the operation 805 partisans and 1,165 people were killed because of “gang favors”, 34 people were taken prisoner, 1,308 people were deported for forced labor, and 395 horses, 2,803 cattle, 572 pigs, 1,560 sheep, and 459 tons of grain were confiscated. In the 2nd part of the enterprise 2,325 partisans were killed and 272 people deported for forced labor. Here the commander of the police battalion 307 led the “Kampfgruppe Binz” named after him.[24]

In Unternehmen Hornung, Kampfgruppe Binz, which included Police Battalion 307, raided the marshes south of Sluzk from 8 February to 26 February 1942. The orders were to destroy all shelters in the area of operations and to shoot the inhabitants of the villages. During this operation 2,219 partisans and another 7,378 people were killed, 3,300 Jews were executed and 65 people were taken prisoner. Possibly included in the number of Jews killed are the 2,500 Jewish victims murdered during the clearing of the Sluzk ghetto.[25]

The battalion took part in the first section of Unternehmen Föhn, which was carried out from 2 March to 7 March 1943 in the area south of the Brest – Sluzk road, northwest of Pinsk. In total, 543 partisans were killed in both parts of the operation and 1,226 people were deported for forced labor.[26]

To secure the railway line Rovno – Berdichev the battalion moved to Rovno in mid-March 1943.[27]

III Battalion of the Police Regiment 24

On 29 March 1943, the battalion was again redesignated, this time as the III Battalion of the 24th Police Regiment.[28]

From 30 March 1943 to 7 April 1943, the battalion participated in Unternehmen Lenz-Süd, which was conducted in the Borissow – Sloboda – Smolewitschi area.[29] The battalion was also apparently engaged in Unternehmen Lenz-Nord from 9 April to 12 April 1943 in the Borissow – Smolewitschi – Lagoisk – Sembin area.[30]

Unternehmen Zauberflöte, in which the battalion was then involved, took place from 17 April to 24 April 1943. It was a large-scale search and screening operation in the city of Minsk. It was directed against communists and partisans. It also served to deport people for forced labor. 350 people were therefore taken to Germany, 712 were used as workers in Minsk, 39 people were arrested and 2 people were murdered.[31]

In May 1943, Police Regiment 24 was placed under the command of the HSSPF Russia-Central in Mogilev.

The battalion was involved in Operation Seydlitz from 25 June to 27 July 1943, which was carried out in the Ovruch – Mosyr area. 2.768 partisans were killed, another 2,338 people were murdered, 603 prisoners were taken, 54 villages and 807 “gang camps” were destroyed, although another report mentions 807 villages destroyed. 6.817 people were deported for forced labor, and 12,407 cattle, 288 horses, 7,246 sheep, and 124 pigs were confiscated.[32]

Still in July 1943 the battalion was transferred to Schytomyr via Kremenez.[33]

In September 1943, after redeployment to the area of the HSSPF Russia-Central, an operation against partisans took place near Disna on the Düna River.[34]

From 9 November 1943 to 24 March 1944, the battalion was then deployed to the front under the 4th Army and 3rd Panzer Army between Polozk and Newel.[35]

This was followed by a deployment to the rear area of Army Group Center in the Bjaresina Marshes from 25 March to 25 June 1944. The battalion took part in Unternehmen Kormoran, which was conducted in the Wilejka – Borissow – Minsk area from 25 May to 17 June 1944.[36]

With the Red Army’s Operation Bagration beginning on 22 June 1944, the battalion was thrown to the front and fought in the Orscha – Borissow – Minsk – Molodechno area from 26 June to 17 July 1944. In the process, the battalion was forced to withdraw to the Vistula River with heavy losses. Its remnants were gathered in Płock. Finally, after another frontal engagement, the battalion was disbanded at Königgrätz on 27 April 1945.[37]

Commanders

  • 3. October 1940 until 17 December 1941: Major Theodor Stahr
  • 18. December 1941 until unknown: Major Siegfried Binz

Literature

  • Wolfgang Curilla: Der Judenmord in Polen und die deutsche Ordnungspolizei 1939-1945. Schöningh, Paderborn 2011, ISBN 978-3-506-77043-1.

“The deployed forces of the order police…. versahen ihrn Dienst vorbildlich”, Das Polizeibataillon 307 (Lübeck) “im Osteinsatz” 1940-1945. An exhibition of the Landespolizei Schleswig-Holstein, Polizeidirektion Schleswig-Holstein Süd (Lübeck) in cooperation with the Landespolizei Hamburg, Landespolizeischule.Lübeck 2002. Project management: Leitender Polizeidirektor Heiko Hüttmann, Lübeck. Project implementation: Director of Studies Wolfgang Kopitzsch, Hamburg.

Individual references

  1. Stefan Klemp, “Not Investigated. Police Battalions and the Postwar Justice System. A Handbook. 2. Auflage, Klartext Verlag, Essen 2011, ISBN 978-3-8375-0663-1, p. 262.
  2. Der Reichsminister des Innern, Pol.O.Kdo. G4 (P 1a), Nr. 28/39, Betr.: Verstärkung der Polizei durch ungediente Wehrpflichtige, 11 October 1939, quoted from: Edward B. Westermann, Hitler’s Police Battalions. University of Kansas Press, Lawrence 2005, ISBN 978-0-7006-1371-7, page 84, fn. 149
  3. http://alex.onb.ac.at/cgi-content/alex?aid=dra&datum=19390004&seite=00002137
  4. a b c d http://www.ordnungspolizei.org [1]@1@2Template:Dead Link/www.ordnungspolizei.org(page no longer available, search web archives ) Info: Thelink was automatically marked as broken. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
  5. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944. Ferdinand-Schöningh-Verlag Paderborn, 2nd edition 2006, p. 569.
  6. Wolfgang Curilla: The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, pp. 570-575. Christopher Browning: Judenmord. Nazi Policy, Forced Labor, and the Behavior of the Perpetrators. Frankfurt 2001, p. 186 f.
  7. Wolfgang Curilla, Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 575.
  8. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 575
  9. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 576
  10. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 580 and 554
  11. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 577
  12. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 578
  13. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 579
  14. Wolfgang Curilla, Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 579.
  15. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 580
  16. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 580
  17. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, pp. 582-584.
  18. Wolfgang Curilla, The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, p. 584 and 712
  19. Wolfgang Curilla, Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 720.
  20. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, pp. 584 and 717-719.
  21. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 584 and pp. 719-721.
  22. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 584 und S. 721
  23. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 584 und S. 721
  24. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 584 and pp. 722-725.
  25. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 725 f.
  26. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, pp. 585 and 728.
  27. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 585.
  28. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 585.
  29. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 585 and 729
  30. Wolfgang Curilla: The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, S. 730
  31. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 730f.
  32. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, p. 586 and 736
  33. Wolfgang Curilla: The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, S. 586
  34. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 586.
  35. Wolfgang Curilla: The German Order Police and the Holocaust in the Baltic States and Belarus 1941-1944, S. 586
  36. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, pp. 586 and 743.
  37. Wolfgang Curilla: Die deutsche Ordnungspolizei und der Holocaust im Baltikum und in Weißrußland 1941-1944, S. 586.