If you are ever tempted to forget that war is, in fact, hell, here is a child member of the German Volkssturm, the citizen army of 16 to 60 year olds conscripted to mount the final defense of Germany against the Red Army. The kid has peed his pants in terror. Their cowardly Fuhrer, of course, blew his brains out rather than join the fight. I wonder what the soldier is saying to him. Is he appealing to his patriotism? His love of the Fuhrer? I wonder if this little boy survived the war.
This is probably the most disturbing photo I have seen in a very long time. I was going to post this on FB but it is way too raw.
You fail to realize that most German soldiers were just people, not murderous cowards (this isn’t the case with SS, they were bad). I’m sure the older German soldier is trying to calm him down, talk soothingly to him. This is the true side of war. While the country of Germany at the time was a bad one, the people weren’t. I have multiple stories of this. Germans weren’t bad people. Some were, but most weren’t.
The uniforms shown in this picture actually suggest that it was taken before the invasion of Russia. This is probably not someone in the Volkssturm but instead a normal infantrie division in France or Poland around 1939.
The heer committed warcrimes too. Soldiers are people, but people are capable of horrific deeds, regardless of what flag flies above them.
Their uniforms suggest that this is pre-Barborossa, so this is likely in France or Poland around 1939-1940. Not “the final defense of Germany” or whatever people romanticize these days.