Operational Situation Report USSR No. 133
The Chief of the Security Police and the SD Berlin,
November 14, 1941
Partisans in Riga
In the last days partisan groups were uncovered in Riga. 56 arrests have been made so far. More are to follow. So far, one mortar with 15 shells, pistols, munitions, and a wireless-transmitter were seized. Members of a group dressed in army uniforms of army deserters have, among other acts, attacked an army truck on the Riga-Madohn highway. It is very probable that partisans have connections with the ghetto and German deserters. Informants connected to the individual groups are assured. Inquiries are not yet concluded. They promise further success.
1) Situation in the newly-occupied area.
In the course of the advance of Army Group Center, a number of newly-occupied towns like Briansk, Ordzhonikedzegrad, Uritski, Gzhatsk, Rzhev were also treated according to SD methods by the Kommandos of the Einsatzgruppe. Once again one can state generally that the civilian population of the towns that are now occupied by our troops were systematically evacuated [by the Soviets] quite a while ago. At the time of occupation there is usually only a fraction of the former population in the towns. They are mostly such persons who have managed to avoid evacuation by running into the surrounding villages. The Jewish population, as well as the Communist party members and the skilled workers, however, have all escaped, as far as could be ascertained. According to available reports, the population was exhorted by a steady stream of propaganda to move, if possible, to the Volga and the Ural areas. Transport trains were put at their disposal and thus a large part of the population was gradually evacuated in this direction.
2) Morale and general conduct of the population.
The public execution of a partisan leader and of three Bolshevik terrorists had a quieting effect on the civilian population of Mogilev. Numerous civilian inhabitants were present at the execution by hanging. It appeared to make a deep impression on them that, from the German side, measures which they themselves can also witness, will now be taken against partisans and Bolshevik functionaries. At any rate, this action is proved to have made far more of an impression on the civilian population than some executions announced by poster. On the other hand, the population exhibited more indifference to the total liquidation of Jews, as in the Vitebsk ghetto, for example. They soon became used to the absence of the Jews without being influenced in either a positive or negative way.
1) General situation.
Resistance among the masses has visibly slackened since the recent German military successes and, in particular, in those areas where the Jews, well known for leading resistance movements, have been completely removed. If the Russian segment of the population had and tendency towards resistance, our very harsh and strict measures (executions by hanging and shooting) have not failed in their effect. The flight of the Jews towards the east goes on, as could be ascertained at the time of the report. Thus, EK9, which is marching towards Moscow, reports that in the town Yartsevo where 7,000 Jews used to live, not a single one has remained. It is much the same in Rzhev, Gzhatsk, Mozhaisk, Izichnov, and Briansk.
Generally, the cooperation of the peace-loving population, particularly the Byelorussian circles, can be felt. In particular, one meets with understanding of how the Jewish question is dealt with. The Jews are regarded as a pest, particularly in the rural areas. The population has already repeatedly asked that the various local military commanders carry out measures against the Jews. Unfortunately, the population can not even decide to take up auxiliary measures on its own against the Jews. The reasons, which are purely psychological, have been referred to before.
2) The fight against the partisans.
When a partisan organization in Mogilev was uncovered, it was noted that its leader, the former Soviet Russian Lieutanant Moktseev, had already managed to recruit 39 men as well as 15 women (mainly adolescents), to serve as spies and to transmit information. Among the 55 persons, there were, all told, 22 Jews who worked with fanatical zeal to further strengthen the organization. Moktseev received strong support from a vegetable dealer who put at his disposal his storeroom in which to carry out the work. The 55 persons were liquidated and, in addition, collective measures were carried out against the Jews.
3) Operations against Party functionaries, agents, saboteurs, and Jews.
In Mogilev, the female worker Nina Lisunova was arrested. She has an elementary school education (up to fourth grade) and worked in a silk factory in Mogilev. She was a deputy to the Soviet Supreme Council and had participated in eight meetings of the Soviet Council in Moscow.
On October 11, 1941, the Russian Feodor Karyago from Shkov and three more Russians were shot for Communist agitation. On the same day, the Russians Vasily Bertyev, Vladimir Berendovsky, and Andrei Siniakov were shot. They had attempted to build up an organization for Communist activities and had already acquired pistols.
On October 14, 1941, the Russians Micheal Sokishevky, Vasily Terisov, Maxim Rudakov, Georgi Charsevu, and Makar Amsalovich were shot. Under the Soviet regime, they had been active Party functionaries and had handed large numbers of people over to the NKVD, as well as assisting in the deportations.
On October 16,1941, the Russian girl Anna Garbusov was shot for particularly violent expressions of hostility against Germany while a member of the NKVD.
On the same day, the Jews Stanislaus Borsky and Tolia Akhonin were liquidated for being former NKVD agents. The Jews Simen Alexandrovich, Shuster Peiser, and Mikail Saki were shot for being in possession of explosive ammunition.
On the same day the Jewess Kadin Orlov was executed for being found without a Jewish badge and for refusing to move into the ghetto. On October 18, 1941, the Jews Lova Wasman, Fama Birkman, Yakob Saravo, Abraham Baraniche, Solomon Katzman, and Ber Katzman, as well as the Jewess Fania Leikina were liquidated for refusing to wear the Jewish badge and for spreading inflammatory propaganda against Germany. On October 20, 1941, the Jews Stanilov Naum and the Jewish couple Alter were liquidated. They had hidden themselves in Mogilev outside the ghetto.
On October 14, 1941, the Jew Isaak Piaskin was shot by the Vorkommando of Einsatzkommando 9. He had been a political functionary of the Red Army and was found on the road to Viasma is suspicious circumstances.
On October 17, 1941, the woman Maria Spirina was shot for sniping.
On October 21, 1941, the Jew Yoel Liubavin was shot after he was found not far from Viasma in a Russian bunker in possession of firearms.
4) Measures against criminals and looters.
The Jew Samuel Goffman was shot on October 17, 1941. He was convicted of having falsified his identity card in order to hide his Jewish origins. The Russian, Emil Stubin, was shot on the same day after having been convicted of repeated arson.
Six Russians were shot in Mogilev on October 20, 1941. They had been wandering about the town and lived by committing criminal acts, including extortion.
Twelve persons were shot on October 21, 1941. They were convicted of criminal theft. Two Jewesses who set fire to two houses in Bobruisk during the air attack on the night of October 13, 1941 were liquidated. A larger number of persons were shot in Bobruisk for looting and other criminal acts.
83 of the several hundred inmates from the forced labor camp in Mogilev were liquidated on October 15, 1941, for being racially inferior elements of an Asiatic strain. The responsibility for their retention in the Rear Army area could no longer be taken.
According to a report Infantry Regiment 691, the Jews of Asmony in every way possible supported the partisans still holding out in the immediate area. On October 9, 1941, during a mopping-up operation in that area 81 Jews were shot for breaking regulations of the German occupying forces. Russian uniforms were found in several Jewish dwellings.
As a result of numerous complaints about their provocative behavior in Gorki (northeast of Mogilev) as well as in the surrounding area, a total of 2,200 Jews of all ages were liquidated in mopping-up operations in eight localities. They were, for the most part, Jews who had immigrated from the district of Minsk. Like the rest, they committed offences against the regulations of the German [occupation] forces. The operation was carried out in close cooperation with the Military Police.
In Mstislavl, about 80 km east of Mogilev, 900 Jews were liquidated for breaking regulations of the German forces, harboring partisans in transit, and providing them with food and clothing.
On October 19, 1941, a large-scale operation against the Jews was carried out in Mogilev with the aid of the Police Regiment 'Center.' 3,726 Jews of both sexes and all ages were liquidated by this action. These measures were necessary because, ever since the town of Mogilev was occupied by German troops, the Jews ignored the authority of the Occupying forces. In spite of previous measures taken against them, they not only failed to desist but continued their anti-German activities to such an extent and with such persistence that, in the interests of establishing order in the rear areas, it could no longer be tolerated.
On October 23, 1941, to prevent further acts of sabotage and to combat the partisans, a further number of Jews from Mogilev and the surrounding area, 239 of both sexes, were liquidated.
Sonderkommando 7a carried out 173 liquidations during the period covered by this report.
7) Confiscation of money and other belongings.
During the period covered by this report, Einsatzkommando 8 confiscated a further 491,705 rubles as well as 15 gold rubles. They were duly recorded and passed on to the Administration of Einsatzkommando 8. The total amount of rubles seized so far by Einsatzkommando 8 now amounts to 2,511,226 rubles.
8) Organizational measures.
Mogilev can be considered practically free of Jews after the last operations. The area of the ghetto built in Mogilev by Einsatzkommando 8 could, for the main part, be returned to the city administration. The few remaining Jews are accommodated in a forced labor camp and are ready to be used as skilled artisans. Sonderkommando 7a has set up an Order Service and a Judenrat in Rzhev.
According to the reports at hand, the reports of Sonderkommando 7b and Einsatzkommando 9 and VKM (1) have yet to follow. The liquidations during the period covered by this report have reached the following figures:
a) Staff and VKM 3,457
b) Sonderkommando 7a 1,517
c) Sonderkommando 7b 1,822
d) Einsatzkommando 8 28,219
e) Einsatzkommando 9 11,452
Total persons executed by Einsatzgruppe B: 45,467
II. Nationality problems
It need not be particularly stressed that Communist agitators received very warm support from the Jews. Under the prevailing conditions, it is important to stop the activity of the Jews in Volhynia and to remove thereby the most fertile soil from Bolshevism. The extermination of the Jews, who are, without any doubt, useless as workers and more harmful as the carriers of the bacilli of Communism, was necessary.
5). Mood of the population.
Following a thoroughly hopeful mood within the population at the time of the entry of the German troops, under the impact of the liberation from the Bolshevist blood terror, there can now This is particularly so with Bandera's propaganda, but also in Melnyk's. It was apparently not yet possible to present the German administration as the power above all parties, having the best of Ukrainian interests in mind. be felt considerable ill-humor because of the aforementioned conditions.
Even though Bolshevist propaganda id ineffective within wider circles, the propaganda activity of the Ukrainian political parties does not contribute towards improving trust in the German troops. The ill-humor is also nourished by Jewish activity, whose influence in economic matters cannot at all be regarded as broken. Also the events and measures which have been mentioned above under Section II - Nationality problems, affect the mood. Though the question of the Church has not yet been solved, it seems to be of little importance with respect to influencing the opinion of the Ukrainian people. This problem will probably be tackled only after a decision has been reached here.
Translations by Hermann Feuer
Copyright: H.E.A.R.T 2008