Wednesday, April 27, 2011

1. SS-Sonder-Regiment "Väreger”

Formed as a battalion size in Belgrade, Serbia, in March 1942, the unit consist 600 ex-Red Army. They were lead by a White-Russian officer, Captain Mikhail Alexandrovich Semenov. Initially, the Germans have a plan to train them as an anti-partisan and saboteurs unit under the Zeppelin Kommando, but the plan never realized. The SS-Jäger Battalion, known informally as "Väreger” (Varjagov), later served as an anti-partisan unit in Yugoslavia until the end of the war.

In 1943, Semenov handed over his command and left to Germany, where he participated to form Vlasov Army. In early 1944, the battalion, lead by SS-Haupsturmführer A. Orlov, was send to Slovenia to fought Tito’s partisan. In November 1944, the battalion expanded to regiment sized and known as 1. SS-Sonder-Regiment "Väreger”.
"Väreger” participated in some anti-partisan operations in Slovenia, including in "Frühlingsanfang" and "Winterende" actions under Kampgruppe Dippelhofer between end March to early April 1945. They were also participated in last large German anti-partisan operation in Slovenia from 9-15 April 1945 along the road Kočevje-Stari Log-Dvor-Soteska.

After Germany collapsed, the regiment surrendered to British army and its members were put into POWs camp near Taranto, Italy. Some soldiers and officers were extradited to the USSR and Yugoslavia. Only a very small group that joined the Russian Guard Corps during the last days of war evaded the common fate.

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