Vereinigung der Verfolgten des Naziregimes
Bund der Antifaschistinnen und Antifaschisten

Landesvereinigung NRW








Nazis raus aus dem Internet




Wir haben an dieser Stelle schon oft über das Treiben der Gebirgstruppe der Wehrmacht und ihrer Freunde berichtet. Aus diesem Anlass dokumentieren wir hier jeweils einen Bericht aus der Sunday Times und The Guardian:

Sunday Times, 08.06.2003

'Real Corelli' gets close to Germans linked to massacre

Justin Sparks, Berlin

A FORMER Italian army officer who claims to be the "real Captain Corelli" was expected to come face to face this weekend with members of a German regiment that massacred 5,000 of his comrades on the Greek island of Cephalonia 60 years ago. The meeting takes place as German authorities prepare to prosecute those suspected of the killings that formed the horrific climax to Captain Corelli's Mandolin, the bestselling novel by Louis de Bernieres. Amos Pampaloni, 93, had a remarkable escape as German troops gunned down members of his division in September 1943 after Italy joined the allied side following the fall of Benito Mussolini, the fascist dictator. Pampaloni survived despite being shot in the back of the neck at point blank range. This weekend Pampaloni was describing his ordeal at a gathering organised by a group of historians and peace activists pressing for the guilty to be brought to justice. The gathering is being held in Mittenwald, a small town in Bavaria that is also hosting the annual reunion of veterans of the Gebirgsjager, the elite mountain troops that carried out the killings. The former West German authorities were reluctant to punish those responsible for the massacre after the war. Many of those who served in Cephalonia went on to hold senior posts in government and in the newly formed Bundeswehr. An investigation was finally launched in 1964 only to be abandoned, supposedly for lack of evidence. Suspected war criminals from the regiment were not cross-examined under oath and were not confronted with evidence, nor with survivors who could have identified them. Even today many Gebirgsjager veterans deny that they did anything wrong. "These alleged massacres in Cephalonia and elsewhere are all lies," said Alois Eisl, 91. "We only killed soldiers in action - no civilians and no massacres." Others such as Elmar Thurn, 82, a former radio operator who went on to become a senior judge, accept that mass executions took place but deny any personal involvement. "I know it sounds strange given the thousands of bodies but I didn't see anything," said Thurn. Two years ago German prosecutors in Dortmund began a new investigation. After collecting information from British, American and Austrian military archives, the team is hopeful that prosecutions will begin later this year. Pampaloni - whose own wartime experiences have strong parallels with those of de Bernieres's fictional hero - says that he sees little point in a fresh inquiry. "We should be putting the past behind us," he said. "Why try to prosecute them now? We are all going to be dead soon anyway."


The Guardian, 07.06.2003

Germany confronts Nazi atrocity: Reunion of war veterans intensifies calls for prosecutions over Cephalonia massacre

John Hooper in Berlin

Mittenwald, nearly 1,000 metres up in the Alps, epitomises the wholesome face of Germany. Visitors come to hike and ski, or to marvel at the town's elaborately painted 18th-century houses. But today the town that Goethe called a "living picturebook" will be hosting an event that has become a focus for controversy over an uglier - indeed, horrific - side of Germany's rich history. This year, as every year, veterans of the 1st Gebirgs (Mountain) Division of Hitler's Wehrmacht, are to gather in the town where many of the division's regiments were raised. But this year, like last year, they will not be alone in recalling the past. Several hundred Autonomen - independent far leftwingers - are expected to descend on Mittenwald to disrupt the reunion. Michael Mohr, who was arrested at last year's protest, said he and about 60 others gained entrance to the party. "You can just imagine the reaction. For about 50 years, nothing had happened, and all of sudden there we were in the middle of their celebration." He and the other protesters were trying to draw attention to an action 60 years ago in which troops of the 1st Gebirgs Division played the leading role: an operation that formed the dramatic centrepiece for the novel Captain Corelli's Mandolin by Louis De Bernieres, and which has been described as one of the most horrifying war crimes. In September 1943, shortly after Italy pulled out of its alliance with Germany, as many as 5,300 Italian soldiers were slaughtered on the Greek island of Cephalonia. The "execution" of the Italian commander and 137 of his officers took more than four hours. Italian marines were made to dump the bodies at sea before they were lined up to be killed. Stavros Niforatos, who was on Cephalonia at the time, remembers finding dozens of bodies amid the scrub. "Some had had their throats cut, like slaughtered sheep," he told Der Spiegel magazine. Yet only one man, General Hubert Lanz, has been convicted of a role in the atrocity. In 1968, an investigation launched with help from the Nazi-hunter Simon Wiesenthal was shelved after four years. It later emerged that the prosecutor's superior had been a Nazi stormtrooper. Two years ago, however, a Dortmund prosecutor, Ulrich Maass, reopened the file. He is investigating 300 surviving veterans and has taken statements from about 100. This week, he revealed that he was expecting to bring charges against 10 men. The number may be paltry, but the investigation goes to the heart of a dispute that has now raged in Germany for two years. Germans have grown to accept that dreadful atrocities were committed by Nazi elite units, but that the regular soldiers of the Wehrmacht were no more to blame for what happened in the war than the combat veterans of any other army. A touring exhibition launched in 2001, which documented the involvement of Hitler's army in atrocities in eastern and south-eastern Europe, has done much to undermine that view. Mr Maass's investigation is eroding it further. The earlier inquiry collapsed because it had uncovered firm evidence only of manslaughter. Mr Maass said: "In our legal system - and this is something I myself am suffering from - manslaughter is covered by a 15-year statute of limitations which, for the war, came into effect on May 8 1960." The case had been reopened, he said, because of new evidence from the US and Italy, and in the diaries of two German soldiers. This offered the prospect of bringing charges for murder, which is not subject to any form of limitation. Except, arguably, one based on clemency. The oldest of the men facing prosecution is 93, and the youngest is 81. Mr Maass said that his chief investigator in Italy reported a man who had survived the massacre because of the intervention of German soldiers as saying: "I wish I could tell Mr Maass that now, after 60 years, he should let mercy take precedence over the law." "But the time for clemency, if ever, comes after a verdict," Mr Maass said. "And I don't know whether these matters really are susceptible to clemency."


Siehe auch:

Weitere Literaturhinweise...


Wehrmachts-Veteranen wollen nicht an Massaker erinnert werden

Protest gegen Feier der Gebirgstruppe / Opfer berichten von Kriegsverbrechen / Bundeswehr unterstützt Traditionstreffen

(Dokumentation aus der Frankfurter Rundschau vom 10.06.03)


Für die Erinnerung an die Opfer ist bei der Soldatenfeier kein Platz


Gegen die Traditionspflege der Gebirgsjäger

Btr.: Unverzügliche Strafverfolgung der Mörder von Kephallonia gefordert...

Pressemitteilung der VVN-BdA NRW:

Angreifbare Traditionspflege:


VVN/BdA fordert unverzügliche Strafverfolgung der Mörder von Kephallonia:

Mörder unterm Edelweiß – noch immer unter uns: