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The SS (Schutzstaffel): Special Duties for the SS in “Operation Barbarossa”

(March 13, 1941)

March 13, 1941
Staff Command Secret Document
Chief Only
Only Through Officer
High Command of the Wehrmacht
WFST [Armed Forces Operation Staff] Div. L (IV/Qu)
No. 44125/41 g.K.Chiefs

Orders for Special Areas* in Connection with Directive No. 21
(Operation Barbarossa)

...b) Within the area of Army operations the Reichsfuehrer SS will be entrusted, on behalf of the Fuehrer, with special tasks for the preparation of the political administration – tasks which derive from the decisive struggle that will have to be carried out between the two opposing political systems. Within the framework of these tasks, the Reichsfuehrer SS will act independently and on his own responsibility. Apart from this, the executive power vested in the Supreme Commander of the Army and in command levels acting under his orders will not be affected. The Reichsfuehrer SS will ensure that operations are not interfered with by the execution of his tasks. Details will be worked out directly between the High Command of the Army and the Reichsfuehrer SS....

* Occupied Eastern Territories.

Sources: Nuremberg Documents, NOKW-2302