Volunteers of the ϟϟ-Division „Wiking“

German Wiking Volunteer Hans-Jörg Hartmann
Swedish Wiking Volunteer Hans Waldemar Lindén
The Wiking Division was the only SS armored division exclusively to fight on the Eastern Front. It was composed of Scandinavians, Dutchmen and Flemish whose primary motivation - most of them - was to fight against Bolshevism. The Division stormed through the steppes, marshes and forest of the Ukraine in 1941. They pursued the enemy to the shores of the Sea of Azov. The volunteers won for themselves a select place in the annals of war. Whether in the south, the centre or the north, wherever the Soviets launched a counter-attack and tore gaps in the German attacking front, orders went out for the Waffen-SS formations. When taken prisoner in autumn 1941 the Russian Major-General Pavel Danilovich Artemenko, commanding officer of the XXVII Rifle Corps, said that the SS-Division Wiking had shown greater fortitude than any other formation on either side; the Russians had breathed a sigh of relief, he said, when the division was relieved by army units. Left image: Hans-Jörg Hartmann with his adopted daughter before leaving for the Eastern Front to take part of the Barbarossa offensive. He was born in Berlin-Lichterfelde and volunteered for the Waffen-SS in 1935 and served as company commader in regiment Nordland of the Wiking. The holder of the Iron Cross First Class SS-Hauptsturmführer Hans-Jörg Hartmann was killed aged 28 on November 20 1941 at Agrafenovka north of Rostov. He kept a photo diary of the weeks following the opening of operation Barbarossa which can be seen here. Hans-Jörg Hartmann's first born son was born 10 days after his death. It was not likely that his wife had yet received the news. She named the child after his father. Fair use. Right image: Swedish volunteer Hans Waldemar Lindén wearing Waffen-SS camouflage smock and helmet cover in the first months of the Barbarossa in 1941. He was born in Stockholm and came as a volunteer to fight in the Russo-Finnish Winter War at age 17, where he served in the Finnish artillery. After the hostilities have ceased he volunteered for the Waffen-SS and was sent to Graz and Heuberg for intensive combat training. Hans Lindén then served with SS-Flak-Abteilung 5 of the Wiking. He was wounded at the Mius-Front during the winter and taken to a field hospital in Jusovka in Donetsk Oblast. SS-Sturmmann Hans Lindén died aged 19 on December 30 1941 and was one of the first Swedish SS volunteers to fall on the Eastern battlefields. Hans Lindén was posthumously awarded the Iron Cross Second Class. Public domain.


  1. Зродились ми великої години6/2/18

    Red Army "liberation" of the surviving Soviet prisoners in German camps brought no end to the suffering of these men. They were dominated by fear of their own countrymen and the commissars. Most were sent to labour camps or executed. NKVD arrested P. D. Artemenko in 1948 simply because he was a former prisoner of war and executed him in August 1950.

  2. Charlemagne5/4/18

    Freely translated from Hans Lindén's diary from 1941: Once again I made my dream come true. A year ago I fought in the Finnish army and now I am in the Great German army... If I have to fall, I will die knowing that our cause will ultimately triumph.