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Italian Camo among Balkan SS Gebirgs divisions


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original paintbrush

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 3:48 pm    Post subject: Italian Camo among Balkan SS Gebirgs divisions Download Post Reply with quote

Question for Patrick (or anyone):

I've read on various boards about the use of Italian camo by SS Gebirgs divisions in the Balkans, but I've never encountered a picture.

Anyone have a source of these?

I'm inquiring about a real war-time period photograph. For instance, the Europa Militaria book on SS camo has a re-enactor wearing a full Italian camo uni (Gebirgs windjacket & pants)as a member of the Handschar. The same image was later copied by DML for the Hasan Malnar release.

I've never seen any photos of SS troops sporting Italian camo in that region. I have run across plenty of other formations wearing it, but not specifically Prinz Eugen, Handschar, etc.

Thanks for any help in advance - be it pics, a book, forum or other source.

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RogueJK

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:08 am    Post subject:  Download Post Reply with quote

Here's one:

Image

It supposedly shows members of the 7. SS 'Prinz Eugen' division in Yugoslavia in late 1943 utilizing captured Italian tankettes. There's plenty of photographic evidence that Prinz Eugen's armored units used a number of Italian tanks and tankettes. The soldier in the foreground appears to have a rolled Italian zeltbahn.

I have also come across a few references to Italian volunteers in Prinz Eugen, but don't have any concrete details. It's plausible that they may have brought some of their camo material with them. It appears as though some Italian soldiers in Dalmatia, rather than joining the partisans or capitulating to the SS and Heer forces in the area in September 1943, chose instead to join up. http://axis101.bizland.com/PrinzEugen1.htm displays a letter home from an Italian member of the 14. Gebirgs-Regiment of 'Prinz Eugen'.

And as I posted in the other thread (reposted here for people who may not be a member of other forums): It's logical that some Italian camo material would be used by 'Prinz Eugen' since 'Prinz Eugen' took part in disarming and confiscating the equipment of over 30,000 Italian soldiers on the Dalmation Coast in September 1943, and operated alongside the Italian 6th Army in Unternehmen 'Weiss' and Unternehmen 'Schwarz', which presents an even earlier opportunity to acquire Italian camo material. There's also the fact that large amounts of Italian equipment fell into the hands of the partisans after the Italian capitulation, both through partisan seizure of depots and through the large desertions of Italian soldiers to the side of Tito's Partisans. This could have, in turn, fallen into the hands of the SS Gebirgsjagers during their operations against the same partisans. Or they could have simply been issued them from the normal supply chain, once Italian camo material began to be manufactured into equipment for the Waffen-SS in early 1944.
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glenning

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 6:49 am    Post subject:  Download Post Reply with quote

It was very common with Polizie troops as well, especially with Polizei Regiment "Bozen";
http://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special%3ASearch&redirs=1&search=Jugoslawien%2C+Polizeieinsatz&fulltext=Search&ns0=1&ns6=1&ns12=1&ns14=1

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original paintbrush

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 6:43 pm    Post subject: SS Balkan Units w/ Italian Camo. Download Post Reply with quote

Rogue - thanks for find the pic and posting. Very interesting. I'll have to keep my eye out. I've been very interested in the units around the area and the Italian camo adds a new wrinkle.

Glenning - thanks for the link. I've seen some of those before, but not all of them. Amazing some of the tailored items that show up in Polizei pics, but also the heavy mix of Italian/German gear (pouches, weapons, etc.) - sometimes with the camo too!

I hope Patrick can chime in - I think I've seen some Heer Gebirgs pics with the camo in quesiton.

I'd just really like to confirm something as wild as the full windjacket and pants, as the Europa and DML figure depict.

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glenning

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 17, 2009 3:06 pm    Post subject: Re: SS Balkan Units w/ Italian Camo. Download Post Reply with quote

original paintbrush wrote (View Post):

Glenning - thanks for the link. I've seen some of those before, but not all of them. Amazing some of the tailored items that show up in Polizei pics, but also the heavy mix of Italian/German gear (pouches, weapons, etc.) - sometimes with the camo too!


Indeed! I've also seen a lot of photos where this is the case. I guess that, after the armistice, a lot of weapons, gear and camo was captured and issued to many of the newly formed Polizei regiments operating in Italy and on the Balkans(many of the regiments actually constisted of Germans, volksdeutsche and Italians).

Polizei officer in the Balkans(check out his uniform, weapon and gear, and the pouches worn by the soldier in the background):
http://zeltbahn.com/pol02.htm

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