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23rd April - This Day In History - Freedom

07.30 23 April 1945.  Stalag IVB, Mühlberg on Elbe, Germany

"€œThe Germans abandoned the camp shortly after midnight.  During the night we heard artillery fire not very distant, and machine gun fire just outside the camp. Russian cavalry rode into camp at 0745 hrs. The red flag was hoisted on the highest building, and flags of all other nationals were also flown. Russian and Serbian X P.O.W. marched out at 1000 hrs."€

But if the British POWs had expected instant repatriation, they were soon disappointed. The American lines were still 25 miles to the west, and the British and American POWs were now in Soviet-occupied territory. The frustration with the bureaucratic Russians, and the sense that games of politics were being played, would mount over the next few days until some of the soldiers - Robert Otterson among them - would take matters into their own hands. His account is here.

My father's story was very similar.

POW%20Dogtag.jpg
My Father's Erkennungsmarke from Stalag IVB

Comments

Different angle - nice to read.

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