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Authors: Stephen G. Fritz

Ostkrieg

OSTKRIEG

OSTKRIEG

Hitler's
War of Extermination
in the East

S
TEPHEN
G. F
RITZ

Copyright © 2011 by The University Press of Kentucky

Scholarly publisher for the Commonwealth, serving Bellarmine University, Berea College, Centre College of Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky University, The Filson Historical Society, Georgetown College, Kentucky Historical Society, Kentucky State University, Morehead State University, Murray State University, Northern Kentucky University, Transylvania University, University of Kentucky, University of Louisville, and Western Kentucky University.

All rights reserved.

Editorial and Sales Offices:
The University Press of Kentucky

663 South Limestone Street, Lexington, Kentucky 40508-4008

www.kentuckypress.com

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Fritz, Stephen G., 1949-

Ostkrieg : Hitler′s war of extermination in the East / Stephen G. Fritz.

p. cm.

Includes bibliographical references and index.

ISBN 978-0-8131-3416-1 (cloth : alk. paper) — ISBN 978-0-8131-3417-8 (ebook)

1. World War, 1939-1945—Campaigns—Eastern Front. 2. World War, 1939-1945—Campaigns—Soviet Union. 3. World War, 1939-1945—Atrocities—Europe, Eastern. 4. Soviet Union—History—German occupation, 1941-1944. 5. Germany—Territorial expansion—History—20th century. 6. Germany—Territorial expansion—Economic aspects. 7. Germany—Territorial expansion—Social aspects. 8. Germany—Military policy. 9. Hitler, Adolf, 1889-1945—Military leadership. I. Title.

D764.F737 2011

940.54′21—dc23                                                               2011030914

This book is printed on acid-free paper meeting

the requirements of the American National Standard

for Permanence in Paper for Printed Library Materials.

Manufactured in the United States of America.

Member of the Association of
American University Presses

Contents

Maps

Abbreviations and Foreign Terms

Preface

1. Dilemma

2. Decision

3. Onslaught

4. Whirlwind

5. Reckoning

6. All or Nothing

7. Total War

8. Scorched Earth

9. Disintegration

10. Death Throes

Conclusion

Acknowledgments

Appendix: Supplementary Data

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Photographs follow page 234

Operation Barbarossa

Operation Blau

Stalingrad, September 1942–February 1943

Kursk and Ukraine, summer/fall 1943

Destruction of Army Group Center, summer 1944

Vistula-Oder-Berlin Operations, 1945

Generalplan Ost

Abbreviations
and Foreign Terms

AFV

armored fighting vehicle

AK

Armeekorps (army corps)

BA

Bundesarchiv (German Federal Archives)

Bagration

Soviet offensive in Belorussia, June–July 1944

Barbarossa

1941 invasion of the Soviet Union

Berghof

Hitler's Bavarian retreat (Obersalzberg)

Blau

Blue, 1942 summer offensive in the Soviet Union

blitzkrieg

lightning war

commissar

political officer attached to Red Army units

Commissar Order

“Guidelines for the Treatment of Political

 

Commissars”; order of 6 June 1941 to shoot Red Army political officers

Edelweiss

advance into the Caucasus, July–November 1942

Einsatzgruppe

mobile killing squad

Einsatzkommando

subunit of an Einsatzgruppe

Fredericus

operation against the Izyum bulge, May 1942

Freikorps

German paramilitary groups

front

Soviet equivalent of an army group

Frühlingserwachen

Spring Awakening, German offensive toward

 

Budapest, March 1945

Gauleiter

Nazi Party regional leader

Generalplan Ost

General Plan East

Gestapo

Geheime Staatspolizei (Secret State Police)

Hiwi

Hilfswillige
(
r
), Russian volunteers/auxiliaries who performed noncombat duties with the German army

Kampfgruppe

battle group (usually formed of units seriously reduced in strength)

Kessel

pocket; cauldron

Kesselschlacht

a battle of encirclement

Landser

German infantryman

Lebensraum

living space

Luftflotte

German air fleet

Luftwaffe

German air force

Mars

Soviet offensive against the Rzhev salient (Ninth Army), fall/winter 1942

NSV

Nationalsozialistische Volkswohlfahrt (National Socialist People's Welfare Organization)

OKH

Oberkommando des Heeres (Army High Command)

OKW

Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (Armed Forces High Command)

Ostfront

Eastern front

Ostheer

Eastern Army

Ostkrieg

Eastern war

panje

Russian horse-drawn wagon

Panther position

proposed German defensive position in the east

Panzerfaust

German one-shot anti-tank weapon

Pz III

German tank, from 1942 with 50 mm antitank gun

Pz IV

mainstay German tank with a long-barreled, high velocity 75 mm gun

Pz V

Panther tank (from 1943, with a long-barreled, high velocity 75 mm gun

Pz VI

Tiger tank (from 1942, with an 88 mm gun)

rasputitsa

lit., time without roads; spring and fall rainy season in the Soviet Union

Reichsführer-SS

Himmler's title

Reichsmarshall

Goering's title

Ring

final Soviet offensive against Stalingrad, January 1943

Rollbahn

main highway in the Soviet Union

RSHA

Reichssicherheitshauptamt
(Reich Main Security Office)

SA

Sturmabteilung (Storm Troopers)

Saturn

proposed Soviet offensive west of Stalingrad aimed at Rostov, November 1942 (“Little Saturn” actually executed)

Schwerpunkt

focal point of an attack

SD

Sicherheitsdienst (Security Service, part of the RSHA)

Sonderkommando

smaller subunit of an Einsatzgruppe

SS

Schutzstaffel (elite Nazi troops)

Stavka

headquarters, Soviet Supreme Command

Stuka

Sturzkampfflugzeug (German dive bomber; JU-87)

T-34

Soviet mainstay tank (76 mm, then after 1944 an 85 mm gun)

Taifun

Typhoon, drive on Moscow, October–December 1941

Trappenjagd

Bustard Hunt, operation on the Kerch Peninsula, May 1942

trek

German refugee column

Uranus

Soviet counteroffensive at Stalingrad, November 1942

Vernichtungskrieg

war of annihilation

Viking

Fifth SS Division

Volk

people, nation

Volksdeutsche

ethnic German

Volksgemeinschaft

national community, people's community

Volkssturm

“People's Storm” (German national militia)

Waffen-SS

armed or combat SS

Wehrkraftzersetzung

undermining of the war effort

Wehrmacht

German armed forces, often used to refer specifically to the army

Wintergewitter

Winter Storm, operation to relieve Stalingrad, December 1942

Wolfsschanze

Wolf's Lair (Hitler's headquarters at Rastenburg, East Prussia)

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