Wehrmacht opposition to SS Eastern policies

Example: Colonel-General Blaskowitz: compiled reports of SS crimes in Poland, sent to Hitler November 1939

Hitler derided Blaskowitz' "childish ideas" but did not relieve him of command

Transferred to Western front

Example: Army chaplain's complaint about atrocities to the general in Russia. General's reply:

What do you propose that I should do? You have too great an estimate of my authority. . . I cannot give orders to the SS squads, which are not under my command, to suspend their criminal acts. I cannot wage a private war against commands which originate at the highest source. -- Gordon, 281

Could the Army as a whole have resisted SS policies?

Yes: --Only armed group who presented a counterweight to the SS

--Could have refused to turn over prisoners to SS

No: Hitler demanded loyalty from Army officers

--Most of Hitler's senior officers were dismissed for disloyalty

--every commander-in-chief, 11 of 18 field marshals, 21 of 37 colonel-generals

Gordon's conclusions: Had all leading army officers been well-disposed towards protecting Jews, sympathy alone would have been insufficient to effect this goal. Even mass resignations would have achieved little, as Hitler would simply have replaced his officer corps.