The Balkans Campaign 1941

SS-Feldgendarmerie in the Balkans 1941
The Balkans Campaign was the invasion of Greece and Yugoslavia in 1941. It began with Benito Mussolini's ill-fated invasion of Greece on October 28 1940. Germany intervened on April 6 1941 and invaded Greece after a successful invasion of Yugoslavia. Hitler began planning to invade Greece in November 1940, after the British occupied Crete and Lemnos. The aim of the operation was to prevent the British from getting air bases within striking range of the Romanian oilfields. Breaking through the Yugoslav lines in southern Yugoslavia allowed Germany to send reinforcements to the battlefields of northern Greece. The Wehrmacht and the Waffen-SS out-flanked the Greek Metaxas Line fortifications and, despite the assistance provided by a British expeditionary corps, set out to capture the southern Greek cities. The Battle of Greece ended with the German entry into Athens and the capture of the Peloponnese. The Balkans Campaign resulted in the Barbarossa campaign being delayed. Image: A soldier of the SS-Feldgendarmerie (Military Police) examining a Soviet SVT-40 rifle seized from a Yugoslavian partisan during the Balkans Campaign in 1941. Commons: Bundesarchiv.

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