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Thread: Volkssturm question

  1. #1
    Senior Member Kammerjaeger's Avatar
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    Default Volkssturm question

    First off, I picked this up the other day, by all appearances seems original to me. It came out of an old local collection. My first question is a general Volkssturm question. It was always my understanding that Volkssturm was a NAZI party entity so as to maintain control versus trusting the Wehrmacht. And yet, this cuff says “Wehrmacht”. Were there purely NAZI Volkssturm units as well as those assigned to the Wehrmacht?








    KJ
    Last edited by Kammerjaeger; 12-29-2019 at 11:18 PM.
    "Was wären Ihre Männer lieber, müde oder tot?" - Rommel

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    RKI- Reasonably Knowledgable Individual heavy_mech's Avatar
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    Don't know if it's legit but I've seen similar. Arm cuff to identify them. Last ditch militia type force. 'Peoples Storm Army' Young kids, old guys and previously wounded and out vets. Really last ditch stuff.
    "Wen Tausend einen Mann erschlagen, das ist nicht Ruhm, das ist nicht Ehre, denn beinsen wird's in späteren tagen gesiegt hat doch das Deutsch Heer. Podest nicht die Paten der Soldaten doner die da Sterben sollen, soll man geben was sie wollen, sahs sie Herzen, sahs sie Küssen, den sie wissen nicht wann sie sterben müssen"

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    RKI- Reasonably Knowledgable Individual heavy_mech's Avatar
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    Like I said I don't know if this is legit or not but they did wear them on their left arm.

    Bundesarchiv_Bild_146-1979-107-10,_Angetretene_Volkssturmmänner.jpg

    Yes and they were 'Nazi', not regular Army.
    "Wen Tausend einen Mann erschlagen, das ist nicht Ruhm, das ist nicht Ehre, denn beinsen wird's in späteren tagen gesiegt hat doch das Deutsch Heer. Podest nicht die Paten der Soldaten doner die da Sterben sollen, soll man geben was sie wollen, sahs sie Herzen, sahs sie Küssen, den sie wissen nicht wann sie sterben müssen"

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    The Volkssturm was a national militia established by Nazi Germany during the last months of World War II. It was not set up by the German Army, the ground component of the combined German Wehrmacht, but by the Nazi Party on the orders of Adolf Hitler.

    Its existence was only officially announced on 16 October 1944. It was staffed by conscripting males between the ages of 16 and 60 years who were not already serving in some military conponent . The Volkssturm comprised one of the final components of the total war promulgated by Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels.

    The armband looks real. Wearing it openly exposed while wearing civilian clothing, was supposed to protect the wearer under Geneva Convention as a legitimate combatant rather than as an irregular [ guerrilla ]. Russians routinely shot them down upon capture.

    There are many variations of the armband, manufacture was done as part of a "cottage industry" since German social and economic infrastructure was in a state of virtual complete collapse at this time.
    Last edited by DaveDavis; 12-29-2019 at 11:48 PM.

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    RKI- Reasonably Knowledgable Individual heavy_mech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveDavis View Post
    Wearing it openly exposed while wearing civilian clothing, was supposed to protect the wearer under Geneva Convention as a legitimate combatant rather than as an irregular [ guerrilla ]. Russians routinely shot them down upon capture.
    Shocking! I understand the concept and believe that often was the outcome.

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveDavis View Post
    There are many variations of the armband, manufacture was done as part of a "cottage industry" since German social and economic infrastructure was in a state of virtual complete collapse at this time.
    Agreed. I think nearly everything was operating at that level.
    "Wen Tausend einen Mann erschlagen, das ist nicht Ruhm, das ist nicht Ehre, denn beinsen wird's in späteren tagen gesiegt hat doch das Deutsch Heer. Podest nicht die Paten der Soldaten doner die da Sterben sollen, soll man geben was sie wollen, sahs sie Herzen, sahs sie Küssen, den sie wissen nicht wann sie sterben müssen"

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    Senior Member Kammerjaeger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveDavis View Post
    The Volkssturm was a national militia established by Nazi Germany during the last months of World War II. It was not set up by the German Army, the ground component of the combined German Wehrmacht, but by the Nazi Party on the orders of Adolf Hitler.

    Its existence was only officially announced on 16 October 1944. It was staffed by conscripting males between the ages of 16 and 60 years who were not already serving in some military conponent . The Volkssturm comprised one of the final components of the total war promulgated by Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels.

    The armband looks real. Wearing it openly exposed while wearing civilian clothing, was supposed to protect the wearer under Geneva Convention as a legitimate combatant rather than as an irregular [ guerrilla ]. Russians routinely shot them down upon capture.


    There are many variations of the armband, manufacture was done as part of a "cottage industry" since German social and economic infrastructure was in a state of virtual complete collapse at this time.

    I guess my question is, is if they were solely an extension of the NAZI Party, why then would the arm/cuff band say Wehrmacht?


    KJ
    "Was wären Ihre Männer lieber, müde oder tot?" - Rommel

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    Moderator Peter U's Avatar
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    These type of armbands, doesn't matter if you were a German or of an other nationality gave very little protection when you were caught; also the Germans executed plenty of resistance fighters on the spot, even if they fought in open combat and with an armband which should normally give you protection of the Geneva convention.
    And as a side note, the Soviet Union in WW2 didn't reckognize the Geneva convention, in 1941 this gave the WH the execuse to abuse their Red Army POW's, in 1945 this of course came back to them as a boomerang.
    Even uniformed allied commando troops didn't get the full protection of the Geneva convention from the WH:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commando_Order
    Hoisting the black flag and going in to combat without taking POW's perhaps sounds cool in a Mel Gibson type of movie but the reality is that it usually comes back biting you in the ass.

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    Senior Member Kammerjaeger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by heavy_mech View Post
    ...old guys and previously wounded and out vets. Really last ditch stuff.

    Wow! I think I'd qualify!


    KJ
    "Was wären Ihre Männer lieber, müde oder tot?" - Rommel

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    Moderator Slash's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kammerjaeger View Post
    I guess my question is, is if they were solely an extension of the NAZI Party, why then would the arm/cuff band say Wehrmacht? KJ
    The use of "wehrmacht" here for the purpose of the DVW is using the word literally. Not organizationally, in "Wehrmacht" as the blanket term for the German armed forces; Heer, Luftwaffe, and Kriegsmarine. Wehrmacht is generally translated as "defense force." So, Deutscher Volkssturm Wehrmacht = German Peoples' Storm Defense Force. In spite of the name's suggestion; a NSDAP organization instead of OKW. Also, your armbinde is original. Hope this helps ....

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    Senior Member Kammerjaeger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slash View Post
    The use of "wehrmacht" here for the purpose of the DVW is using the word literally. Not organizationally, in "Wehrmacht" as the blanket term for the German armed forces; Heer, Luftwaffe, and Kriegsmarine. Wehrmacht is generally translated as "defense force." So, Deutscher Volkssturm Wehrmacht = German Peoples' Storm Defense Force. In spite of the name's suggestion; a NSDAP organization instead of OKW. Also, your armbinde is original. Hope this helps ....

    Thanks Slash, much appreciation.


    KJ
    "Was wären Ihre Männer lieber, müde oder tot?" - Rommel

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