Friedrich Schubert-Greek -German Nazi convicted 27 times to death.

Friedrich (Fritz) Schubert (21 February 1897, Dortmund – 22 October 1947, Heptapyrgion) was a Greek-speaking German NCO Sonderführer of the  Wehrmacht. Fritz_Schubert_porttrait (1)

As head of the Jagdkommando Schubert, a paramilitary force terrorizing the civilian population during the Nazi occupation of Greece in World War II, he committed numerous atrocities in Crete and Macedonia.

Tried by a special court for war crimes in Athens, he was found guilty over the killing of over 250 civilians, sentenced 27 times to death and executed.

According to some sources, Schubert was born as Petros Konstantinidis , son to a rich tobacco merchant in Smyrna and emigrated to Germany at a young age. There, he joined the National Socialist Party and became a dedicated Nazi. Schubert made his first appearance on Crete in 1941 as an interpreter to the German commander of Rethymno. Later, he succeeded Hartmann as the head of the German counter-espionage network. Due to his speaking of Turkish and his strong accent of Greek, Cretans nicknamed him “the Turk”. In 1943, after recruiting several convicted Greek criminals and Germanophiles (e.g., members of the Tzoulias family from Krousonas), he established his notorious Jagdkommando in eastern Crete.

Schuberites_in_Tzermiado

The Jagdkommando Schubert was an anti-communist militia unit intended to capture local resistance fighters and those who helped them. Its conscripts, who were dressed in Wehrmacht uniforms, become known among Cretans as the Schuberai or Schubertiani . They were notorious for their sadistic practices during attacks against civilians that involved beating, torture, shootings and the destruction of numerous villages (e.g., Oropedio Lasithiou, Rodakino, Kali Sykia, Kallikratis).

On the 6th of October 1943 they burnt 13 civillians alive in the village of Kaly Sykia

Even today, calling someone a Schuberai is considered in Crete to be a serious insult synonymous to treachery and cruelty.

These events had enraged the local resistance fighters and made them want to eliminate the Schuberai at all costs. Soon, Schubert’s unit lost its effectiveness as it could not operate away from Chania without the escort of a large Wehrmacht protective force. Hence, in 1944 Schubert and his unit were transferred to Macedonia where they reinforced Poulos’s collaborationist battalion (a.k.a. Poulos Verband). While in Macedonia, Schubert’s group continued their hideous activities, being responsible for the massacres of Chortiatis and Giannitsa, among others.

After the war, Schubert attempted to return to Greece. On 4 September 1945 he was arrested in Eleusina on board a plane repatriating ex-concentration camp prisoners back to Greece.

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On August 5, 1947 he was found guilty of 271 murders and several other crimes including arson, rapes and thefts. For these, Schubert was convicted 27 times to death and several thousand years of imprisonment. He was executed in Eptapyrgio, Thessaloniki on October 22, 1947.

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Massacre of Kondomari

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

The Massacre of Kondomari  refers to the execution of male civilians from the village of Kondomari in Crete by an ad hoc firing squad consisting of German paratroopers on 2 June 1941 during World War II.The shooting was the first of a series of reprisals in Crete. It was orchestrated by Generaloberst Kurt Student, in retaliation for the participation of Cretans in the Battle of Crete which had ended with the surrender of the island two days earlier.

Bernhard-Hermann Ramcke, Kurt Student

The massacre was photographed by a German army war propaganda correspondent whose negatives were discovered 39 years later in the federal German archives by a Greek journalist.

The civilian population of Crete had joined in the defence of their island alongside Greek and British armed forces. There are many accounts of them killing parachutists, some as they were still hanging in their parachutes as they landed. Some might regard this as a matter of self defence but the Germans interpreted it as “partisan” activity because they were not wearing uniform, and in their eyes outside the rules of warfare. There were also rumours that bodies had been mutilated or that even some parachutists had been tortured – although a much more likely explanation that bodies – necessarily left on the landing grounds – very rapidly decomposed in the heat.

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

 

Following Student’s order, the occupants of Kondomari were blamed for the death of a few German soldiers whose bodies had been found near the village. On 2 June 1941, four lorries full of German paratroopers from the III Battalion of Luftlande-Sturm-Regiment 1 under the command of Oberleutnant Horst Trebes surrounded Kondomari. Trebes, a former member of the Hitler Youth, was the highest-ranking officer of the Battalion to have survived the Battle unwounded.

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

Men, women and children were forced to gather in the village square. Then, a number of hostages was selected among the men while women and children were released. The hostages were led to the surrounding olive groves and later fired upon. The exact number of the victims is unclear. According to German records, a total of 23 men were killed but other sources raise the toll to about 60. The whole operation was captured on film by Franz-Peter Weixler, then serving as a war propaganda correspondent (kriegsberichter) for the Wehrmacht.

 

 

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

Franz Peter Weixler, Wehrmacht kriegsberichter (Army war correspondent) photographed and preserved his negatives of the massacre. Weixler was later charged with treason and held by the Gestapo. Here is an English translation his original statement for the trial of Hermann Goering.

“The punitive expedition consisted of Trebes, another lieutenant, an interpreter, two sergeants and about twenty five parachutists of the Second Battalion. As a photographer assigned to my division I was permitted to accompany this commando. Near the village of Malemes, we stopped and Trebes showed us the corpses of several soldiers, obviously in the process of decay. He incited the men against the civilian population. We continued our drive to the village of Kondomari.

The men got off, and ran into the few houses of the little community. They got all men, women, and children onto the little square.

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

A German soldier brought out the coat of a parachutist which he had picked up in one of the houses. and which had a bullet hole in the back. Trebes had the house burned down immediately.

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

One man admitted having killed a German soldier, but it was not possible to convict any of the others of any crimes or plundering, and I therefore asked Trebes to stop the contemplated action and give us orders to return, taking with us only the one man. Trebes however gave orders to separate the men from the women and children; then he had the interpreter tell the women that all of the men would be shot because of having murdered German soldiers, and that the corpses would have to be interred within two hours.

When Trebes turned his back for a few moments, I made it possible for nine men to get away. Trebes had the men form a half circle, gave the order to fire, and after about fifteen seconds, everything was over.

Kreta, Kondomari, Erschießung von Zivilisten

I asked Trebes, who was quite pale, whether he realized what he had done, and he replied that he had only executed the order of Hermann Goering, and avenged his dead comrades. A few days later he received the Knights Cross from Goering for his “braveness” in Crete.”

Bundesarchiv_Bild_101I-166-0525-30,_Kreta,_Kondomari,_Erschießung_von_Zivilisten

The following day an even worse massacre was conducted in the village of Kandanos, where 180 civilians were killed, possibly by a squad also led by Horst Trebes. The village was razed to the ground.

Karl Schümers- the butcher of Greece

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Karl Schümers (17 October 1905 – 18 August 1944) was a high-ranking commander in the Waffen-SS and Ordnungspolizei (police) of Nazi Germany during World War II. He commanded the SS Polizei Division in July – August 1944. He was directly or indirectly involved in many of the major atrocities committed in Greece during 1944. Killed by a landmine on 18 August 1944, he was posthumously awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross

DE_Band_mit_RK_(1).

  • On 5 April 1944, Karl Schümers commanded the 7th unit of the 4th SS Polizei Panzergrenadier Division to the execution of 277 unarmed women, children and elders in the village of Kleisoura in Greece as a retaliation of the killing of 3 German soldiers.In the official investigations by his command hierarchy for the massacre he testified that his soldiers had to kill them all because guerrilla forces were hiding in the village, and was acquitted, while it was proven after the war that his testimony was false.
  • On 24 April the his 7th unit committed the Pyrgoi massacre where 368 children were slaughtered.Mnimio-pesonton
  • Men from the same 7th unit, under the command of Hans Zampel and Fritz Lautenbach committed the Distomo massacre, on 10 June, where 218 civilians were brutally murdered for retaliation, one of the cruelest atrocities of WW II; no one was ever tried for this war crime.Distomo_massacre_1944
  • On 17 June 1944 Karl Schümers commanded the execution of 28 civilians and total destruction of Ipati, and the next day, the burning down of Sperchiada and the killing of 35 civilians.
  • After he was assigned the command of the 4th Panzer Grenadier Division, on 22 July 1944,the 8th unit of his forces took part in the operation Kreuzotter (5-31 August 1944) in a failed attempt to eradicate ELAS bases from the mountains of central Greece, Roumeli, Greece , that resulted, among others, in the killing of approximately 170 civilians and the partial or complete destruction of dozens of villages and cities.Αντάρτες_του_ΕΑΜ-ΕΛΑΣ

He was killed on 18 August 1944 when his car stepped into a landmine planted by Greek resistance, in Arta, Greece.