Images

 


Chapter 2

Freikorps Danmark takes the oath and parades at the Langenhorn Barracks, Hamburg, August, 1941. NARA photo Record Group 242, file 242-jrp-Weill95 and 9689 unknown.

Freikorps Danmark takes the oath and parades at the Langenhorn Barracks, Hamburg, August, 1941. NARA photo Record Group 242, file 242-jrp-Weill95 and 9689 unknown.

Léon Degrelle, pre-war period. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

A pre-war Rexist meeting at Lombeek. 10 July 1938. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Contre-le-Bolchevisme. Propaganda leaflet in favor of the struggle against Bolshevism. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Army staff note citing organization of Walloon Battalion 373. NARA T78/412/6380731.

Brussels, August 8, 1941. Waiting for Degrelle to join the ranks after his farewell speech at the nearby Palais des Beaux-Arts. The officer in the foreground on the left is Jules Mathieu, all are in uniform of the Formations de Combat, the militia of the Rex Party. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Brussels: Gare du Nord railroad station, 8 August 1941. Degrelle in his Rexist militia uniform in company of unidentified German soldiers, a few moments before getting on the train to Regenwurm camp in Germany. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Meseritz 1943. Degrelle could not help giving speeches, one of his favorite activities. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Degrelle at Meseritz 1943. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Meseritz. Rexist flag ceremony. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Lieutenant Louis Calonne (left) and Cadet H. Van Eyser directing an exercise in the field. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Spring-Summer 1942: a propaganda postcard showing antitank instruction in the presence of Walloon Legion Commander Lucien Lippert (taller of two with soft hats). Next to him is Pierre Dengis (white uniform). The latter was to become the commanding officer of the Assault Gun Company of the 5th SS Wallonien Assault Brigade. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

A Walloon NCO and his platoon during an exercise (mid-1942).. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Lieutenant Jules Mathieu. Summer 1942. A high-ranking officer in the Rexist Militia, he began his service in the Walloon Legion as a platoon leader in the 1st Company, among whose ordinary soldiers stood LÎon Degrelle. He finished the war as an SS major and commander of the 69th Regiment in the paper-strength divisional organization. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Pieske May 1943, just before being transferred to the Waffen-SS. Note the two Waffen-SS instructors (soft hats) in the center. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

A la soupe. Walloon volunteers training in the German Army as the 373rd Infantry Battalion. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Tasting the soup. On the left Hubert Van Eyser who was to be killed in action at Cherkassy as a platoon leader in the 1st Company. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Return from the Caucasus. "Most of these pictures were taken just after the return from the Caucasus campaign when the battalion was refitting at Pieske Barracks, Meseritz before moving to the SS-Übungsplatz at Wildflecken in June 43. (Wildflecken when in SS uniform). The man left on the 1st row looks to me as if he is Marcel Barbier. New recruits are arriving, some in plain clothes others in their black Formation des Combat uniform ( with the Burgundian Cross on their chests). Note that on one particular photo, (row beneath, third photo from left ), the men still wear their mountain boots." Caption by Eddy DeBruyne, with thanks for the identification efforts. NARA photo Record Group 242,


Chapter 3

Young men signing up for the Spanish Volunteer Division, in Madrid, June 1941. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

A stylised version of the demonstrations in Madrid against Russia as the Russo-German War began, (watercolor, 1980). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

German 37mm PAK and 47mm/2.8 PAK, April 1944. Ordnance Museum, Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Spanish soldiers playing checkers (watercolor, 1942). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

German 150mm. Ordnance Museum, Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Five soldiers try out their new German uniforms, incorrectly depicted as the tropical type, while still wearing the red berets and blue shirts issued to the Spanish volunteers (1946). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Captain Gavilán. Seen here with his Messerschmidt BF-109F fighter, Captain Gavilán became an ace while serving with the second and third of the five Spanish squadrons rotated to the Eastern Front for duty under the German Luftwaffe. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

On the march from Poland to the front, 1941, the march discipline of the Spanish volunteers produced the first of several poor impressions on the part of the German liaison personnel and higher commanders. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Snow scene (Fernando Vadillo, 1953). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

The first cemetery at the field hospital located at Grigorovo, but several more would be required for the Spanish Division. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

A Spanish ski detachment, company sized, was formed for duty in winter, and carried out an epic march across Lake Ilmen in early 1942 (watercolor, Mario Treviño, 1989). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Among the various units the Spanish worked with in the Volkhov Pocket were fellow volunteers of the Legion Flandern, a few soldiers of which visited a Spanish artillery battery during a lull. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

The fighting in the Volkhov Pocket, (watercolor, Mario Treviño, 1989). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Spaniards preparing the 150mm howitzer for firing. Note the depth of prepared emplacements, typical of the Siege of Leningrad. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Training on the Leningrad Front, July 1943, a practice trench raid. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Emilio Esteban-Infantes. A scholar and staff officer who commanded large units in the Civil War, Emilio Esteban-Infantes became the second and last commander of the Spanish Divison. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Augustín Muñoz Grandes. The first commander of the Spanish Division, Augustín Muñoz Grandes became the second ranking man in the Franco regime before his death in 1970. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

A critical moment in the Battle of Krasny Bor, 1943 (watercolor, Mario Treviño, 1989). Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

German 50mm PAK, and 75mm PAK. Ordnance Museum, Aberdeen Proving Ground.

Antonio García Navarro. The third chief of staff of the Spanish Division, Antonio García Navarro would lead the ill-fated Spanish Legion in its short but turbulent existence. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

A memo from the Army High Command Staff, quoting a December 31, 1941 report from the East Prussia-Königsberg sector on the conduct of Spanish officers and troops, emphasizing the unbridled nocturnal revelling of the officers and the shabby deportment of the troops in public, among other heinous activities! NARA OKH files T311/72/7093779-80.

The Spanish troops freely associated with the locals on the Volkhov/Lake Ilmen front, as elsewhere, to the utter consternation of German authorities. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

German 37mm PAK, 50mm PAK, and 75mm PAK. Ordnance Museum, Aberdeen Proving Ground.

The personal campaign map of the first commander of the Spanish Division, Muñoz Grandes. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.


Chapter 4

In August 1941, the first 40 nurses of the Women's Section arrived at Grafenwöhr in support of the Spanish Division. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

Flemish recruiting poster for Waffen SS. Original handbill in author's collection.

Departure of the Legion Wallonie for the Eastern front. "The pictures showing Degrelle were taken at his Villa, Drève de Lorraine, Brussels on August 8th, 1943 ( 2nd anniversary of the departure of the Legion Wallonie for the Eastern front). The one showing Degrelle surrounded by 27 war reporter in front of his villa was taken the same day. The other pictures showing Germans were taken at the Gare du Nord railroad station and on the "Grand Place" of Brussels, during a visit to that peculiar tourist place. The picture showing the Walloon legionnaire officer with the Walloon badge on the lower part of his left sleeve is SS-First Lieutenant Jean Vermeire." Caption by Eddy DeBruyne, with thanks for the identification efforts. NARA photo Record Group 242, file 242-jrp-75 vierbillken.

A Waffen-SS recruiting poster for the former Walloon Legion, taken into the SS in mid-1943. The Tiger tank serves as an impressive symbol, but the Walloons mostly fought as infantry. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Léon Degrelle, (1906-1994). Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Degrelle during the decoration ceremony at Charleroi in the parade of Cherkassy survivors. Eddy de Bruyne collection.

Charleroi, 1 April 1944. Degrelle parading through the streets of Charleroi in a vehicle lent by the 12th SS "Hitler-Jugend" Division, then billeted at Beverloo Barracks, Belgium. Eddy de Bruyne collection.


Chapter 5

The 31 March 1944 farewell parade of the Spanish Legion at Stablack Camp in Königsberg, the training depot of the Spanish replacements once the Spanish Division had reached the front. Spanish Army Museum, Madrid.

 

A European Anabasis — Western European Volunteers
in the German Army and SS, 1940-1945