The Info List - Hans-Adolf Prützmann

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Hans-Adolf Prützmann
Hans-Adolf Prützmann
(31 August 1901 – 21 May 1945, Lüneburg) was a high-ranking German SS official during the Nazi era. From June to November 1941, he served as the Higher SS and Police Leader
Higher SS and Police Leader
in the Army Group North Rear Area
Army Group North Rear Area
in the occupied Soviet Union. In this capacity, he oversaw the activities of the Einsatzgruppen
detachments that perpetrated The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in the Baltic States.


1 Early life 2 Nazi career 3 World War II

3.1 Role in the Latvia
Holocaust 3.2 Later career, arrest and suicide

4 Notes 5 References

Early life[edit] After completing his studies at the Gymnasium, Prützmann studied agriculture in Göttingen, before he became a member of various Freikorps
between 1918 and 1921. Despite being a member, he nevertheless avoided military and typical Freikorps-related aggressive situations. This, however, changed in 1923, when he interrupted his studies to accompany a Freikorps
involved in the Upper Silesian uprisings. Afterwards he worked for seven years as an agricultural official in Pomerania, Brandenburg, and East Prussia. Nazi career[edit] He joined the SA in 1929. Prützmann had become quite a radical soldier as a result of his Freikorps
experiences. Since his own personal goals did not match the milder thinking found in the SA, he left the organization in 1930 and transferred to the SS; one of his first command assignments was as the Führer
of the 18th SS-Standarte. As of this point in time, Prützmann's career began a steep rise. While a member of the Reichstag, he was appointed SS- Brigadeführer
in November 1933, and in February 1934 he was promoted to the rank of SS-Gruppenführer. At the same time, Prützmann was appointed Leader of the SS Upper Division Southwest in Stuttgart. From March 1937 until May 1941, Prützmann led the SS Upper Division Northeast whose headquarters were in Königsberg
(now Kaliningrad). World War II[edit] By April 1941, Prützmann had been appointed Generalleutnant (Lieutenant General) of the Police. From June until October 1941, he was Höherer S.S. und Polizeiführer (Higher SS and Police Leader) of Russia-North, the post being responsible for internal security and combatting partisans. He held the same position in Ukraine
and Russia-South until the summer of 1944. He also commanded Kampfgruppe "Prützmann" in Ukraine
during the early summer of 1944, and was awarded with the German Cross
German Cross
in Gold for his actions. Role in the Latvia

The Riga Ghetto
Riga Ghetto
in 1942. Prützmann was responsible for setting up this ghetto. Most of its inhabitants were killed in the Rumbula massacre.[1]

From June to November 1941, Prützmann held the post of Higher SS and Police Leader (HSSPF) for Latvia. Effectively this gave him control of Latvia, shared with Hinrich Lohse. In Latvia
killing of Jews and other persons began almost immediately, and at first they were primarily conducted by a mobile killing group (Einsatzgruppe A). In late July 1941, Einsatzgruppe A moved out of Latvia, and primary responsibility for organizing the murder of Jews then moved to the Latvian office of the SD (Sicherheitsdienst, or Security Service.) As HSSPF Latvia, Prützmann was in charge of the SD and the person responsible for implementing the Final Solution
Final Solution
in Latvia.[2] After the departure of Einsatzgruppe A, a dispute arose among the Nazi rulers of Latvia
about their so-called "Jewish problem". One group, headed by Lohse, who was backed by Alfred Rosenberg, wanted to confine the Jews to ghettos, steal all their property, and work them as slave laborers in support of Germany's war effort. Heinrich Himmler, the overall head of the SD, and Prützmann's ultimate boss, wanted the Jews of Latvia
murdered right away. Up until November, 1941, the Lohse/Rosenberg faction had somewhat prevailed, and as a result "only" about 30,000 of Latvia's approximately 70,000 Jews had been killed by then. Unhappy with pace at which the SD was murdering people in Latvia, Himmler replaced Prützmann in mid-November 1941 with Friedrich Jeckeln, an experienced murderer who in Ukraine
had developed his own "Jeckeln system" of killing 10,000 or more people in a single day. Prützmann was assigned to Ukraine.[2] Prützmann's precise role as HSSPF Latvia
in the murders of Jews and other war crimes in Latvia
has never been fully explained. He appears to have been something of a weakling in the struggles the Nazis were having between themselves. It is known that Prützmann was responsible for forcing the Jews of Latvia
into ghettos, which allowed them to be later more readily killed by Jeckeln and others. It is also known that when Jeckeln took over as HSSPF Latvia, Prützmann among others reported to him that large numbers of Jews had already been killed.[2] Later career, arrest and suicide[edit] One of his last promotions came in September 1944 when Prützmann was appointed by Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Himmler
as Generalinspekteur für Spezialabwehr (General Inspector of Special
Defense) and assigned the task of setting up the Werwolf
force's headquarters in Berlin and organizing and instructing the force. Prützmann had studied the guerrilla tactics used by Russian partisans while stationed in the occupied territories of Ukraine
and the idea was to teach these tactics to the members of Operation Werwolf.[3] As originally conceived, the Werwolf units were intended to be legitimate uniformed military formations trained to engage in clandestine operations behind enemy lines in the same manner as Allied Special
Forces such as Commandos.[4][5] In early 1945, under orders from Himmler, he directed the assassination of the Allied-appointed mayor of Aachen, Franz Oppenhoff. Shortly before the war ended, Prützmann was captured by the Allies. He committed suicide while in custody, on 21 May 1945. Notes[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in Latvia.

^ United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. "Holocaust Encyclopedia – Riga". Retrieved 27 October 2017.  ^ a b c Ezergailis, Andrew, The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in Latvia
1941-1944 -- The Missing Center, pp. xix, 6, 153, 206, 208, 225, 240, 264,347, Historical Institute of Latvia
(in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum) Riga 1996 ISBN 9984-9054-3-8 ^ Biddiscombe, Perry (1998). Werwolf!: The History of the National Socialist Guerrilla Movement, 1944-1946. University of Toronto Press. p. 464. ISBN 978-0-8020-0862-6.  ^ Klemperer, Victor 077348681X; Roderick H. Watt (1997). An Annotated Edition of Victor Klemperer's LTI, Notizbuch eines Philologen. E. Mellen Press. p. 305.  ^ Reitlinger, SS - Alibi of a Nation, pp. 148n and 445.


Ezergailis, Andrew, The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in Latvia
1941-1944—The Missing Center, Historical Institute of Latvia
(in association with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum) Riga 1996 ISBN 9984-9054-3-8 Reitlinger, Gerald, The SS: Alibi of a Nation 1922-1945. Viking (Da Capo reprint), New York 1957 ISBN 0-306-80351-8

v t e

The Holocaust
The Holocaust
in Latvia

Main article The Holocaust Related articles by country Belarus Estonia Lithuania Norway Poland Russia Ukraine


Burning of the Riga synagogues Dünamünde Action Jelgava Pogulianski Rumbula Liepāja (Šķēde)


Jewish people of Latvia Gypsies Joseph Carlebach Simon Dubnow Else Hirsch


Alois Brunner Rudolf Batz Fritz Dietrich Otto-Heinrich Drechsler Erich Ehrlinger Karl Jäger Friedrich Jeckeln Heinz Jost Konrāds Kalējs Ernst Kaltenbrunner Wolfgang Kügler Rudolf Lange Hinrich Lohse Friedrich Panzinger Hans-Adolf Prützmann Eduard Roschmann Alfred Rosenberg Martin Sandberger Albert Sauer Rudolf Joachim Seck Franz Walter Stahlecker Eduard Strauch

Nazi occupation and organizations

Einsatzgruppen Reichskommissariat Ostland Rollkommando Hamann


Individuals Viktors Arājs Herberts Cukurs Kārlis Lobe

Organizations Arajs Kommando Latvian Auxiliary Police Schutzmannschaft

Ghettos and camps

Daugavpils Ghetto Jungfernhof concentration camp Kaiserwald concentration camp Riga Ghetto Salaspils concentration camp


Generalplan Ost Jäger Report


Sonderaktion 1005

War crimes investigations and trials

trial Extraordinary (Soviet) State Commission

Righteous Among the Nations

Jānis Lipke Roberts Sedols


Bikernieki Memorial

Related articles

The Holocaust Occupation of Latvia
by Nazi Germany

v t e

and Einsatzkommandos



Reinhard Heydrich Ernst Kaltenbrunner

Commanders of Einsatzgruppen

Humbert Achamer-Pifrader Walther Bierkamp Horst Böhme Erich Ehrlinger Wilhelm Fuchs Heinz Jost Erich Naumann Arthur Nebe Otto Ohlendorf Friedrich Panzinger Otto Rasch Heinrich Seetzen Franz Walter Stahlecker Bruno Streckenbach

Commanders of Einsatzkommandos, Sonderkommandos

Erich von dem Bach-Zelewski Rudolf Batz Ernst Biberstein Wolfgang Birkner Helmut Bischoff Paul Blobel Walter Blume Friedrich-Wilhelm Bock Otto Bradfisch Werner Braune Friedrich Buchardt Fritz Dietrich Karl Jäger Friedrich Jeckeln Waldemar Klingelhöfer Wolfgang Kügler Walter Kutschmann Rudolf Lange Gustav Adolf Nosske Hans-Adolf Prützmann Walter Rauff Martin Sandberger Hermann Schaper Karl Eberhard Schöngarth Erwin Schulz Franz Six Eugen Steimle Eduard Strauch Martin Weiss Udo von Woyrsch

Other members

August Becker Lothar Fendler Joachim Hamann Emil Haussmann Felix Landau Albert Widmann


Viktors Arājs Herberts Cukurs Antanas Impulevičius Konrāds Kalējs Algirdas Klimaitis



SS RSHA SD Orpo 8th SS Cavalry Division Florian Geyer Volksdeutscher Selbstschutz Sonderdienst


(Belarusian, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Ukrainian) Arajs Kommando Lithuanian Security Police Rollkommando Hamann TDA Ypatingasis būrys



Łachwa Ghetto Minsk Ghetto Slutsk Affair




Burning of the Riga synagogues Dünamünde Action Jelgava Pogulianski Rumbula Liepāja (Šķēde)


Ninth Fort Kaunas June 1941 Kaunas 29 October 1941 Ninth Fort
Ninth Fort
November 1941 Ponary


Operation Tannenberg Intelligenzaktion AB-Aktion Operation Reinhard


Gully of Petrushino Zmievskaya Balka Lokot Autonomy


Babi Yar Drobytsky Yar Drohobycz Kamianets-Podilskyi Lviv pogroms Mizocz Ghetto Odessa


The Black Book Commissar Order Einsatzgruppen
trial Generalplan Ost Jäger Report Korherr Report Special
Prosecution Book-Poland (Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen) Einsatzgruppen

v t e

Army Group Rear Areas during the German–Soviet War, 1941–45

Army Group Rear Area

North Centre South

Commanding organisations

Army High Command Kommandostab Reichsführer-SS Army Group North Army Group Centre Army Group South


Erich Friderici Ludwig Kübler Franz von Roques Karl von Roques Edwin von Rothkirch Max von Schenckendorff Joachim Witthöft

Security Divisions

201st 203rd 207th 213th 221st (Police Battalion (PB) 309) 281st 285th 286th 403rd 444th 454th 707th


Erich von dem Bach-Zelewski Friedrich Jeckeln Hans-Adolf Prützmann

Police and SS Detachments

(PB 9) Police Regiment North Police Regiment Centre
Police Regiment Centre
(PB 307, PB 316, PB 322) Police Regiment South (PB 45, PB 303, PB 314) Police Regiment Special
Purpose (PB 304, PB 315, PB 320) SS Cavalry Brigade 1st SS Infantry Brigade 2nd SS Infantry Brigade

Major crimes

Babi Yar Kamianets-Podilskyi massacre Persecution of Soviet prisoners of war


Hitler's speech of 30 March 1941 Hunger Plan Mogilev conference Bandenbekämpfung

War crimes trials

High Command Trial Krasnodar Trial Minsk Trial Riga Trial

Related articles

The Holocaust War crimes of the Wehrmacht Myth of the clean Wehrmacht


Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933–1945 Hitler's War in the East 1941−1945 Hitler's Bandit Hunters: The SS and the Nazi Occupation of Europe Marching into Darkness: The Wehrmacht
and the Holocaust The Wehrmacht: History, Myth, Reality

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 30349060 LCCN: nr97040028 ISNI: 0000 0001 1489 4680 GND: 119536862 BNF: