Women in Auschwitz

women

On March 26, 1942, close to 1000  women were taken from the Ravensbrück concentration camp to Auschwitz, mots of them were deemed “criminals” and “a-socials”.Only a few hours later,  yet another transport arrived. Again, it was made up of almost 1000 Jewish women from Slovakia. It would be first transport of women to  Auschwitz.

Rather then going into the details of this event I will focus on 4 eye witness accounts of women who survived the Holocaust.

Laura Varon on the experience when she first arrived in Auschwitz

“They opened the doors, the squeaking doors… and a little bit of air came… When we arrived in Auschwitz, we were already numb: the bones, the legs were not moving anymore. Two men in striped uniforms, because they heard us speaking Ladino, they told us in Ladino, ‘We are Greeks from Saloniki. Give the children to the old people,’ they told us. Again, we didn’t [understand] what this meant. How can you understand, ‘Give the children to the old people?’ And then they were afraid to talk to us and that’s all, ‘Give the children to the old people.'”

Feige Serl-Lax  on her arrival in Auschwitz

“…And then we were in Auschwitz and then they opened the door, the Polish Jewish boys come… They were there… a long time. And he sees my sister, [she] was a beauty. He said, ‘You have children?’ She said, ‘Yes. Two children.’ And in that manner he said, ‘Let the children go left and you two go right.’ I take out the child and my sister takes out [the other child] and we don’t let him. We come in the line to Mengele. That Polish man that I didn’t want to release the child to, then he comes and takes the child from me and pushes me to the right… and he wants to take from my sister, also the little boy… Mengele was angry and told my sister to go left. I never saw]her again. That was the last time.”

Yehudit Rubinstein on her experiences

“…They sent us… to the bathhouse. So there the first order we got: Everything off. We just couldn’t believe what we heard: to take off everything, take off clothes, everything, pins from your hair, everything out. We were uncomfortable, the first time in my life I was in public, undressing in front of men, coming in and out, then we understood that nothing will help us, so we had to undress, and they called ‘Who is a hairdresser?’ …So one woman whom I knew as a young girl from my town, she was a hairdresser, so step by step with the scissors and with their machine started to cut the hair, other parts, everywhere, private parts, before we turned around under the shower, opened the water before we had a chance to wet ourselves: ‘Raus’ , they gave us this gray uniform, and just our shoes – the lot of us were holding on to their shoes, put on their shoes, bare naked and nothing on them and out in the garden, out in front of the bathhouse.

shaven

Lea Kahana-Grunwald recalled her memories if a pregnant woman.

“A girl came in. She came in with her mother. She was pregnant and he overlooked it, Mengele. He didn’t notice. It was a young girl, a young person. The first child. She wasn’t so big. She had the child on the bunk, without any help. The mother was with her and I suppose the staff helped her through it… I don’t know what they did with the child, whether they burned it or what. She gave birth and she had to stand next morning at roll call. She survived. The child was killed. How they killed it I don’t know the details, but I knew the girl. She was from my town and she got married a few months earlier. That was her first pregnancy, her first child.”

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Source

Yad Vashem

 

Sex during the Holocaust

Brothel

I know this is an awkward subject and some people may have difficulties even reading past the first sentence. However just because it is awkward and  controversial doesn’t mean it is not important.

Sex is one of the most primal human instincts and urges it is how we manage to reproduce, but is more then that it is something that makes us feel good. The orgasm is  the peak of sexual excitement. It is a powerful feeling of physical pleasure and sensation. And sex  is something we even need  for our general physical and mental  health.

Capture

I have often wondered how it must have been during the Holocaust and especially in the camps, was it even possible?

The aim of the Nazi regime was to eradicate the Jews and to a lesser degree Gypsies and other ethnic groups. Aside from the mass murder they also deprived those who worked in the camps from having sex, therefor ensuring they would not reproduce. Often they also would be subjected to sterilization

In all documentations  I have read about the Holocaust, I have not discovered any indication that the deprivation of sex  was ever considered as a crime, in the post war trials.Which I find strange because  It was of course a heinous crime to deprive anyone from one of the most human of human rights.

If anyone was caught having sex there would be severe punishments. Sexual contact between prisoners was extremely rare. Men and women were mostly separated in the camps but in some work groups they would sometimes work together.

Rudolf Vrba’s  recounts some exceptions, in his book “I Escaped From Auschwitz “. On  one occasion a  male kapo of a male inmate work group had a longing  for sex with the female kapo of a female work group working in the same operation, sorting the belongings of the victims who had been murdered in the gas chambers. The female kapo was an attractive, young Hungarian girl who agreed to have sex  if she was given some specified gifts. Vrba was instructed  in  one casewas to transport the gifts to the female kapo before the sexual encounter. Unfortunately for Vrba, he was caught ,the gifts, taken from the belongings of the murdered individuals, were considered property of the Reich He was beaten severely because he hadn’t reported the 2 Kapos.

Kanada

In Joan Ringlehiem’s book “Different Voices: Women and the Holocaust.” one survivor recalled “I had two enemies: Nazis and men.” in the same book another survivor gave her account describes that  besides the Nazis, men acted like “animals” too. She stated  that one day, the SS officers decided to let the men go to the side where the women were. At this point in time, all they wanted to do was have sex.

Germans were not allowed to have sex with any one deemed by the Nazis as ‘sub human’,anyone caught having sex with a Jew or any other ethnic minority not considered Aryan, could result in severe penalties, even the death penalty.

Young attractive women were often forced into working in brothels  to work as sex slaves.Two of the largest were in Auschwitz, in Nazi-occupied Poland, with the main brothel nicknamed ‘Puff’ situated just behind the Arbeit Macht Frei entrance in Block 24.

24

An estimated  21 women prisoners worked in the Auschwitz brothels which were known as Sonderbauten (special buildings). The final brothel was opened in 1945.Emaciated prisoners chosen for the brothels were given a humiliating medical check and had disinfectant cream smeared over their genitals.

But there were brothels in other camps too, the picture at the top of the blog is a picture of a brothel in Buchenwald.

The brothels were created as an incentive for prisoners to collaborate, although these was  mostly by Kapos,   criminals who would use the brothels.

The Auschwitz brothel was fitted with peep holes used by SS guards  to ensure the inmates only used the missionary position.

Heinrich Himmler  had initially intended the brothels to be used to ‘convert’ gay  prisoners by teaching them  “the joys of the opposite sex”,

Homosexuals of course were another group persecuted by the Nazi regime. That would mainly apply yo gay man and not so much to lesbians, there were only a few lesbians persecuted and this was not even the primary reason it usually was  because they were Jewish rather then lesbian. Female homosexuality was basically not acknowledged of something that existed.

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Sources

USHMM

The Guardian

Different Voices: Women and the Holocaust.”

Different Voices: Women and the Holocaust.”

Female beauty and War.

Betty Grable

I have done so many pieces on the horrors and the ugly side of World War 2 so I decided that today I am going to turn it around a bit. Today the focus will be on celebrating some of the beautiful women who served in WWII in a variety of ways.

The picture above is off the Actres/Pin Up girl Betty Grable.showing off her “Million Dollar Legs”.Undoubtedly that picture would have put a smile on the face of many service men.

nurse

Alas, it is not known who this Army nurse was or why she was wearing US Army threads. The only information is the postcard itself, that she was in Australia during November 1942 – and she might have been somewhere else in the Pacific. However, whoever or wherever she was,her presence here must certainly must have been appreciated.

red army

Red Army snipers assemble before heading to the front. 1943.

Sniper

19-year-old Soviet sniper Roza Shanina had 59 confirmed kills, 1945

pin up

It could put a descriptive text here filled with innuendo and double entendre, but lets keep it clean suffice to say it is a picture of a US Pin Up girl sitting on  a torpedo taken in 1944

aleksandra

Aleksandra Samusenko was the only female Soviet tank officer in the 1st Guards Tank Army, 1943.

ida

Actress Ida Lupino, as a lieutenant in the Women’s Ambulance and Defense Corps at a telephone switch board in Brentwood, California, on January 3, 1942.

Mrs Titus

Mrs. Titus, 77-year-old air raid spotter of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, carries a gun as she patrols her beat, on December 20, 1941. Mrs. Titus signed-up the day after the Pearl Harbor attack. “I can carry a gun any time they want me to,” she declared.

simone

Simone Segouin, aka Nicole Minet , was a  French Resistance fighter who served in the Francs-Tireurs et Partisans group. one of  her first acts of resistance was stealing a bicycle from a German military administrator, which she then used to help carry messages.

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NS-Frauen-Warte- Nazi propaganda in a glossy women’s magazine.

magazine

The NS-Frauen-Warte was a fortnightly  Nazi magazine for women. At a first glance the magazine looked harmless. It would often have recipes or sewing patterns etc. But most of the articles in the magazine were pure propaganda, aimed to brainwash women and especially young mothers.

Below is an article from the January 1940 edition. The cover of the magazine shows a child making a snowball, the main article is called “Life must win”

“What the man sacrifices in fighting for his people, the woman sacrifices in fighting to maintain this people. The man shows heroism on the battlefield, the woman shows it in eternal patient devotion, in ever patient sorrow and endurance.

Each child that she brings into the world is a battle that she fights for the existence or nonexistence of her people

— Der Führer

In happy times, holidays like Christmas Eve with the family or New Year’s Eve are high lights. In graver times when the fate of an entire people hangs in the balance, they are an occasion contemplating of times past and times to come . Only weak people will fall into lame sentimentality or be tempted by hopeless self-pity. Others find occasion to catch their breath, to find clear, solid knowledge that they can use to give them new courage to go on with their labours. But we should not forget that these holidays even during war bring joy and strength. A war Christmas is not a new thing to the older ones among us . We have experienced it before, those grave but unforgettable Christmases that united the homeland and the front together in unbreakable community. Christmas, that is the feast of family community. During war, it is the festival of community for all who are of the same nature, the same blood. It is the community of Germans; particularly now as we all stand before unprecedented change, a time of renewal, of youth, of the eternity of our people.

A correct comprehension of our time must make us proud and strong, and from such knowledge we may turn our view from outside to the lives of German women. Their high mission as guardians of life is very different from that of the man, and one cannot do enough to emphasize that again and again. The man’s life is filled with struggles and battles, with tools or working the soil. But today more than ever, the outcome depends on the quiet heroism of women. The willingness of the man to die stands against the will of the woman for life. The more we learn about the world and our people, the higher is the role of the woman, and the more we must see the question of life as the most significant. War and victory stand in the service of life, in the service of maintaining and extending the life of our people. That is their meaning.

Our enemies have often stated  openly that they look for victory not in fair fighting on the battlefield, but rather in a war of annihilation against the core of our national being, against our women and children. They may have hunger written on their battle flags, but these methods they used against us before hold no terror for us, for we are ready. What is behind those threats is more serious. The implacability of our enemies in England and above all in France is best understood when one realizes that their populations are declining. They face a Germany whose population is so strong they dare not attack it with arms. They hope that by prolonging the war, by blockades and starvation, they can exert pressure on the German life will. These shrinking peoples use poisoned weapons to fight the new, healthy German growth, a Germany they believed they had dealt with in the Treaty of Versailles by senselessly taking its territory in the hopes of cutting off Germany’s life.

The success or failure of the enemy’s devilish plans depends on German women and mothers, on their will to sacrifice and on their love for their children. It may often be difficult  to be a mother, to continue  the eternal struggle for the life of the German people. That is especially the truth  for women whose husbands are in the military, but each brave deed is its own reward. And let us not forget that life keeps going, and breaks through the barriers that stand in its way. Is not the continuing expansion of German territory new proof for the eternal law that life finds its way?

No one may remove the desire of German women to bear children. Some may try to spread the idea that children born during the war will face hunger and a future wounded in body and soul, as happened during the World War. But today’s government sees in children its greatest wealth, and its highest responsibility  in caring for them. It will ensure that children born during the war will be protected, and can look forward to a happy Germany. They will harvest what today is being sown in these great days. And we may not forget that today the whole people stand behind our children; once again it takes pleasure in children and loves them, seeing its future in its children.

Life is the world of the woman. The fate of her people is determined by her attitude toward life, in her will to happiness and her desire for children. Our soldiers protect Germany and all that we have achieved. But it is our women who are the foundation of the future of  Germany, who build it stone by stone through fine German children. Here are the values , here the right to life of our people. Our children are the river that carries German feeling, German thinking, German accomplishments, and the German will throughout the centuries.

Will the courage of German women to carry on life be less than the willingness of our soldiers to die? That is the question that faces us. The only answer is this:

A military or political victory over our enemies would be only half the battle, and could not guarantee Germany’s future or the Führer’s work. The decisive factor is the victory of life. And that is in the hands of our women and mothers.”

Donation

I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Source

Heidelberg University

German Wikipedia

German History Docs

 

 

Gerda Steinhoff- No remorse but jokes.

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Gerda

The buzzword nowadays is gender balance, and to be fair to the Nazi regime they had figured out gender balance decades ago. But was that a good thing?

When it come to evil there is no real difference between men and women, the men are in general physically stronger through their biology, but that is where the difference ends.

There were a large amount of female guards as part of the SS across several concentration camps.

guards

Compared to the likes of Ilse Koch or Maria Mandl,Gerda Steinhoff wasn’t the worse of the female guards. This was probably because she joined the SS late in the war. Prior to her career with the SS, she had been working and tram conductor.

She got married in 1944 and had a child. That same year, due to a shortage of new guards, Gerda joined the camp staff at Stutthof. On October 1, 1944, she became a Blockleiterin in Stutthof women’s camp SK-III.There, she took part in selections of prisoners to be sent to the gas chambers

SK11

Later that month, on October 31st , 1944, she received a  promotion as SS-Oberaufseherin and was assigned to the Danzig-Holm subcamp. On the first of December, 1944 she was reassigned to the Bromberg-Ost female subcamp of Stutthof located in Bydgoszcz near Gdańsk.  In the camp is where ,she received a medal for her loyalty and service to the Third Reich, on January 25, 1945. She was dedicated and utterly devoted  to her job in the camps and was known as a very ruthless supervisor. Soon before the end of World War II, she fled the camp and went back home.

But her stay at home didn’t last long, on the 25th of May , 1945, she was arrested by Polish officials and sent to prison. She stood trial with the other SS women and kapos and was convicted and condemned to death for her involvement in the selections and what was called her sadistic abuse of prisoners.During her trial Gerda showed no remorse but made jokes instead

She was publicly hanged on July 4, 1946, on Biskupia Gorka Hill, near Gdańsk.

hanging

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Opha May Johnson-US Marine

mARINE

Today marks the 100th anniversary of real girl power. Om August 13th 1918,Opha May Johnson became the first Female US Marine.

World War I was drawing to an end when the Marine Corps decided to fill some of the gaps left behind by all the men fighting overseas. In 1918, Johnson was the first of 300 women who reported for duty. They made headlines in newspapers all across the country.

Marines

Newspaper articles, OF 1918 AND ALSO the published history of Women Marines in World War I,  reported Johnson’s first duties were as a clerk at Marine Corps headquarters, managing the records of other female reservists who joined after she did.

joins

Ironically when she joined the marines she was not yet allowed to vote.

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I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Resources

National Library of Congress

Washington Post

 

The Ravensbrück Rabbits

Rabbitts

The Ravensbrück Rabbits was the name given to 74 Polish women, who were subjected to medical experiments in the Ravensbrück concentration camp.

Of the 74 women, 5 died as a result of the experiments and 6 other victims whose wounds did not heal were executed. The other survived with permanent damage.

Rather then go through all 74 accounts I am focusing on the account of one sirvivor,Jadwiga Kaminska. below is the translation of her affidavit submitted to the Nuremberg trials.

Rabbis

“I, Jadwiga Kaminska, 24 Avenue de 1’Yser, Brussels, make oath and state as follows:

“I was arrested on 18 March 1941 and arrived in Ravensbruck on 27 September 1941 and left the camp on the 16 April 1946.

“I was twice operated on during my stay in the camp. The first time was August 15, 1942, in the second group of prisoners to be operated on; the following were operated on with me: Kormanska, Zofia; Kaminska, Zofia; Karolewska, Vladyslava; Jurkowska, Alicia; Karwacka, Ursula; Iwanska, Yanina; Iwanska, Krystyna; Karesman, Muria.

“In the morning of the same day we were operated on we were all sent to the Revier not knowing what was to happen to us. Five of us were sent to one room and the two Inwanska sisters and Karwacka to another. On arrival we all had baths and were given small hospital shirts and blouses. We had no medical examination and were given nothing to eat. When they were taking me to the operating theatre I fought to keep out but was held down by the nurse Ericka and two owner nurses in the corridor whilst Dr. Rosentahl gave me an anaesthetic by injection in my arm.

Dr Rose

Just before I had the injection I saw Gebhardt in the corridor and I also recognize him on No. 3 in the group of photographs. I also saw Dr. Oberhauser going into the Operating theatre. When I came round, I found that all of us had been operated on and that my right leg was in plaster up to the knee, three days later I was taken to the Dressing Room and my face was covered with a sheet so that I could not see what going on, I recognized the voices of Oberhauser, Rosenthal, Schidlauski and there were several others there whose voices I did not recognize. I heard another Doctor who I believe removed plaster ask for instruments.

“Immediately after the operation I had a temperature of 39 degree, the first week after the operation it varied between 38 and 39. When I was sent back to my block three weeks after the operation I still had some fever and felt very weak.

After the first operation Gebhardt came into the room where I was having my dressing changed with several other doctors and talked about the operations and said they were “Military Operations”. I recognized Gebhardt when he came into the room.

Gebbhardy

“About a week after my first operation Rosenthal came into our room drunk. We asked him why we had been operated on, he answered “because you are young girls and Polish Patriots.” Oberhauser was also asked the same question She answered that the operation had been ordered by the Gestapo. Dr. Fischer advised us to ask the Senior Doctor, Schidlausky, why we had been operated on, but after that we never saw Schidlausky again.

“I was in great pain after the operation, the first two days we were offered a medicine but refused to take it after which we were offered nothing.

“About a week after the operation I first saw my wound which was about 10 cms. long and 5 cms. wide and full of green pus and very inflamed. It is now 10 cms. long and about 3 cms. in width.

“Thee days after my first dressing the second one was done under similar circumstances as the first, but I managed to pull the sheet off my face for a few seconds and saw Dr. Fischer who was doing my dressing.

“I was operated on the second time on 13 September 1942, with five others who were: Wojtaski, Wanda; Rakowska, Pelagia; Gnas, Maria; Kaminska, Jadwiga; Karolewska, Vladislava,; Karwacka, Ursula.

“The day before the operation I was again put in the Revier and had a bath and then salt compresses were put on my wound by the nurse Wricke and another nurse. Before the second operation I was given something to drink which made we sleep and consequently knew no details of the operation.

“When I came to from this operation I had much more fever than the first time; we were given something to drink three times a day to alleviate the pain but it had little effect; in the evening, however, Oberhauser gave us morphine injections. We were not in plaster after the second operation. The first two times my dressings were changed by Dr. Fischer and afterwards by Schidlausky and Oberhauser and also by SS nurses.

“After my second operation I stayed in the Revier three months, during all that time I had fever and felt very weak and I was given no care.

“When I left the Revier three months after that operation my fever had almost gone but my wound was still open. Before I left the Revier Oberhauser had a look at my wound, and said I was fit to go. In March 1943 my leg was still discharging pus.

“In February 1945 the order came out that all of us who had been operated on were to remain in our blocks. We knew this meant we were to be liquidated.

“I went to the bureau and spoke to Binz and Swarzhuber; they told me that as we were still weak we would be transferred to the Gresrosen camp. I said that was not true but that we should be shot in the camp without being transferred.

“I demanded of Swarzhuber that I saw Suhren; he said it was impossible. After a few days, however, I saw Suhren and told him that we would rather be killed in the camp than at Grossrosen. Suhren said he would do everything in his power to save us.

“My leg is new healed but gets tired very quickly and during the last three months I have had intermittent fever which my doctor tells me is due to recurrence of infection in my leg and also the glands in my right groin have become swollen. Signed Jadwiga Kaminska.”

OR

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I am passionate about my site and I know a you all like reading my blogs. I have been doing this at no cost and will continue to do so. All I ask is for a voluntary donation of $2 ,however if you are not in a position to do so I can fully understand, maybe next time then. Thanks To donate click on the credit/debit card icon of the card you will use. If you want to donate more then $2 just add a higher number in the box left from the paypal link. Many thanks

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Sources

The Nuremberg Project.

Women at War- The heroines of WWII

Victory_job_(AWM_ARTV00332)

On the day it is in ,international women’s day, it’s the perfect time to celebrate women at war and World War 2 to be precise.

Women fulfilled many roles during WWII be at on the battlefield or on the home front.They were nurses, pilots, secret agents or workers in the factories. Each had a part to play.

ww2_women_recruiting

 

Below are just a few examples.

Nearly 350,000 American women served in uniform, both at home and abroad, volunteering for the newly formed Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs)

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A row of Harrods employees, each wearing the uniform of a different women’s service

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Reporter Ruth Cowan (at te far left of the picture) and some other  women war reporters.

 

reporters

Nancy Wake served as a British Special Operations Executive agent during the later part of World War II. She became a leading figure in the maquis groups of the French Resistance and was one of the Allies’ most decorated servicewomen of the war.

AN-Wake-Portait

Hannie Schaft, a Dutch resistance fighter aka ‘Het Meisje met het Rode haar- the girl with the red hair’ she eliminated several members of the German secret police and Dutch collaborators.

On March 21, 1945 Hannie was arrested at a routine checking because she had illegal newspapers and her pistol in her bag. The Germans recognized her as the girl with the red hair, for whom they had been looking for so long. On April 17, 1945 she was executed in the dunes.

hannieschaft3

Native American women from Chemawa train to work in shipyards.

nine_indian_girls_from_chemewa_trained_at_eugene_nya_school_for_work_in_portland_shipyards_1942_013610_sm

Yugoslavian female partisan fighters

YugoslavWomenPartisansWWII

Canadian Women’s Army Corps

canada

After the Bataan Peninsula fell in April 1942, a group of Army and Navy nurses continued to perform their duties while imprisoned in a Japanese camp.

hith-angels-of-bataan-E

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Sexy and Lethal-WWWII: Women of World War 2

Simone Segouin, the 18 year old French Résistance fighter, 1944 (1)

I know the title is not PC, but it reflects the reality because these women were sexy. They would give any man a run for their money. They were not to be messed with and they were lethal. Either as part of the resistance or armed forces they were a force to be reckoned with.

Honoring the women who fought and often gave their lives so that we now all enjoy our freedom.

The picture above is of Simone Segouin, also known by her nom de guerre Nicole Minet. When this photo was taken she was 18 years old. The girl had killed two Germans in the Paris fighting two days previously and also had assisted in capturing 25 German prisoners of war during the fall of Chartres. In 1944, at the height of the Nazi occupation of France, she joined the Francs-Tireurs et Partisans (Free-shooters and Partisans, or FTP) – a combat alliance made up of militant communists and French nationalists. Simone was very much in the latter camp. Her father was a huge inspiration – a decorated soldier who had fought in the Great War – and she was intensely proud of her country.

Simone went on to become a paediatric nurse in Chartres, where her wartime exploits made her hugely popular. Despite her swashbuckling war years, Simone was always aware of how difficult it had been for women to play a role in the Resistance. They made up little more than ten per cent of the force, and the majority were confined to non-combat roles. But nonetheless, their presence had helped force a shift in the way women were treated.

Female snipers of the 3rd Shock Army, 1st Belorussian Front. The ‘Shock’ armies were created with the specific structure to engage and destroy significant enemy forces, and were reinforced with more armored and artillery assets than other combined arms armies. Where necessary the Shock armies were reinforced with mechanized, tank and cavalry formations and units.

The snipers in the picture:
First row – Guard Staff Sergeant, VN Stepanova: 20 kills, Guard Sgt JP Belousova: 80 kills, Guard Sgt AE Vinogradova: 83 kills.
Second row – Guard Lieutenant EK Zhibovskaya: 24 kills, Guard Sgt KF Marinkin: 79 kills, Guard Sgt OS Marenkina: 70 kills.
Third row – Guard Lieutenant NP Belobrova: 70 kills, Lieutenant N. Lobkovsky: 89 kills, Guard Lieutenant VI Artamonova: 89 kills, Guard Staff Sergeant MG Zubchenko: 83 kills.
Forth row – Guard Sergeant, NP Obukhova: 64 kills, Guard Sergeant, AR Belyakova 24 kills.

Total number of confirmed kills: 775. Photo taken in Germany, May 4, 1945

775 confirmed kills in one picture, 1945

Roza Shanina was a Soviet sniper during World War II who was credited with fifty-nine confirmed kills, including twelve soldiers during the Battle of Vilnius. Shanina volunteered for the military after the death of her brother in 1941 and chose to be a marksman on the front line. Praised for her shooting accuracy, Shanina was capable of precisely hitting enemy personnel and making doublets (two target hits by two rounds fired in quick succession).

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On 27 January 1945 Shanina was severely injured while shielding a wounded artillery officer. She was found by two soldiers disemboweled, with her chest torn open by a shell fragment.Despite attempts to save her, Shanina died the following day near the Richau estate (later a Soviet settlement of Telmanovka).

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Mrs. Paul Titus, 77-year-old air raid spotter of Bucks County, Pennsylvania, carries a gun as she patrols her beat, on December 20, 1941. Mrs. Titus signed-up the day after the Pearl Harbor attack. “I can carry a gun any time they want me to,” she declared.

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Ack-Ack Girls, members of the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS), run to action at an anti-aircraft gun emplacement in the London area on May 20, 1941 when the alarm is sounded.

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Little known to the outside world, although they have been fighting fascist regimes since 1927, the Italian “Maquis” carry on their battle for freedom under the most hazardous conditions. Germans and fascist Italians are targets for their guns; and the icy, eternally snow-clad peaks of the French-Italian border are their battlefield. This school teacher of the Valley of Aosta fights side-by-side with her husband in the “White Patrol” above the pass of Little Saint Bernard in Italy, on January 4, 1945.

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Specially chosen airwomen were being trained for police duties in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF). They had to be quick-witted, intelligent and observant They attended an intensive course at the highly sufficient RAF police school – where their training runs parallel with that of the men. Keeping a man “in his place” – A WAAF member demonstrates self-defense on January 15, 1942.

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Members of the Women’s Army Corps (WAC) pose at Camp Shanks, New York, before leaving from New York Port of Embarkation on February 2, 1945. The women are with the first contingent of Black American WACs to go overseas for the war effort From left to right are, kneeling: Pvt. Rose Stone; Pvt. Virginia Blake; and Pfc. Marie B. Gillisspie. Second row: Pvt. Genevieve Marshall; T/5 Fanny L. Talbert; and Cpl. Callie K. Smith. Third row: Pvt. Gladys Schuster Carter; T/4 Evelyn C. Martin; and Pfc. Theodora Palmer.

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Symbolic of the defense of Sevastopol, Crimea, is this Russian female sniper, Lyudmila Pavlichenko, who, by the end of the war, had killed a confirmed 309 Germans — the most successful female sniper in history.

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