ϟϟ-Division „Leibstandarte ϟϟ Adolf Hitler“

Leibstandarte SS-Oberscharführer
Leibstandarte SS troops greeted by Ukrainians
During Operation Barbarossa, the SS-Division Leibstandarte SS had penetrated 960 kilometres into Soviet territory. It spent the winter 1941-1942 fighting ferocious defensive battles on the front of Heeresgruppe Süd in temperatures of down to −40 °C with minimal winter clothing and only 150 grams of rations per man per day. Despite this, the division held. After the spring rasputitsa had cleared, the exhausted division joined in Operation Edelweiß, participating in the fighting to retake Rostov-on-Don, which was recaptured in late July 1942. Top image: An unidentified Leibstandarte SS-Oberscharführer in the Ukraine in July 1942. Photo: SS-Kriegsberichter Paul Augustin. US National Archives and Records Administration. Fair use. Bottom image: Ukrainian women greet arriving Leibstandarte SS grenadiers. Many Ukrainians welcomed German troops as liberators and welcomed them with flowers or the traditional Ukrainian bread and salt of hospitality and friendship. In occupying Ukraine the Germans were particularly concerned to exploit the country's agriculture and raw materials for the war effort. Under such conditions Ukrainian political activity, predicated originally on cooperation with the Germans, increasingly turned to underground organizational work and resistance. Commons: Bundesarchiv.

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