Skip to comments.German troops 'hid like rabbits' in Kosovo riots
Posted on 05/11/2004 8:14:07 AM PDT by BayouCoyote
German troops serving with the Kfor international peacekeeping contingent in Kosovo have been accused of hiding in barracks "like frightened rabbits" during the inter-ethnic rioting that erupted in the province in March.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
And hey, sure the Germans let a bunch of people die needlessly. But at least they didn't make any of them wear women's clothing. (/sarcasm)
Especially if your government has signed on to the International Criminal Court (or is that criminal International Court?)
You mean they don't rape, pillage, burn down villages, shoot civilians, round up undesirables such as Jews, Gypsies and Slavs. Help form einsatz gruppen with the SS, and other assorted types of activities.
The CO said he was obeying the ROE as set up.
It was a pretty similar set up in Bosnia in 1993 we also had to stand aside and allow some unsavory activity to take place because the ROE would not let us.
You have no idea of what you speak. German Americans and recent German immigrants were by far the largest percentage of all Union troops and by far the largest percentage of all casualties.
"Yeah they ran through the briars and they ran through the brambles,
they ran through the bushes where a rabbit wouldn't go,
they ran so fast that the hounds couldn't catch 'em,
they took the fastest route away from Kosovo."
This resulted in the outbreak of the American Civil War. European immigrants joined the Union Army in large numbers. Over 6,000 Germans in New York immediately responded to Lincoln's call for volunteers. Another 4,000 Germans in Pennsylvania also joined. The French community were keen to show its support of the Union. The Lafayette Guards, an entirely French company, was led by Colonel Regis de Trobriand. The 55th New York Volunteers was also mainly composed of Frenchmen.
It is estimated that over 400,000 immigrants served with the Union Army. This included 216,000 Germans and 170,000 Irish soldiers. There were several important German born military leaders such as August Willich, Carl Schurz, Alexander Schimmelfennig, Peter Osterhaus, Franz Sigel and Max Weber. One Irish immigrant, Thomas Meagher, became a highly successful commander in the war. Another important military figure was the Norwegian soldier, Hans Christian Heg, who was mainly responsible for establishing the Fifteenth Wisconsin Volunteers (also known as the Scandinavian Regiment).
More on immigrants in the American Civil War
Foreign Soldiers in the American Civil War
by Andy Waskie The decades preceding the outbreak of the American Civil War witnessed an unprecedented influx of immigrants who sought security and opportunity in America. The overwhelming majority of these foreign born settled in the North and were especially attracted to urban areas or communities where their compatriots were already established. From 1820 to 1860 approximately four million people immigrated to the fledgling United States. The majority of these came from:
The German States (c. 500,000) particularly after the social and political upheaval of the 1848 revolution;
Ireland (c. 1,000,000) most as a result of economic hardships brought on by the infamous "Potato Famine";
England (c. 300,000) many of whom came from the depressed areas of Scotland and Wales.
Although newly arrived, these hearty souls adapted quickly. Most took out American citizenship, sent their children to school and in the case of the Germans, made attempts to learn English. Politically, most were loyal to the Union, with many supporting the Republican party. The Irish were an exception to this, however, as they became ardent Democrats, forming the backbone of the machine politics of the great cities of the East. Upon the outbreak of hostilities of 1861, these ethnic groups responded to Lincoln's call for troops in stirring fashion. Often, men from the same background and origin banded together to form regiments from the states where they had settled. Others joined local units and served with their native born neighbors. The overwhelming majority of these foreign born immigrants served loyally and well in the Union armies. It was an absolute falsehood, however, that the majority of all Federal troops were foreign born, as was an oft repeated assertion of the Southern and British press of the time. Based on enlistment rolls and other official reports and stated in round figures, out of approximately 2,000,000 Union soldiers enlisted during the war over two-thirds (2/3) were native born Americans. Thus, only under one-third (1/3) of all troops were non-natives distributed approximately as follows:
German c. 200,000
Irish c. 150,000
British c. 150,000
Canadians c. 50,000
others c. 75,000 (mostly European)
Comparing the percentage of native and immigrant troops to the total population of the North (c. 21,000,000) reveals that the per capita percentage total enlistments from both groups is approximately equal. Thus, we can assert that the foreign troops did their fair share of service in their adopted land for the cause of Union. Overall comparison of the ethnic makeup of the regiments in Federal service shows that:
- in 75% of these units the majority was of native American birth;
- in 7% the majority were German;
- in 6% the majority were Irish;
- in a further 6% the proportion of native to non-native born was equal
- in the the remaining 6% we find a mixture of troops of diverse origin, including Colored troops.
The contribution of the foreign born immigrant troops to the cause of the Union was decisive in securing victory over the Confederacy. The loyalty and patriotism of these new Americans, with a few exceptions, never flagged. Their efforts helped insure a united country and a secure future for the nation.
Since most foreign born troops were scattered throughout the volunteer state regiments, it is difficult to single out any "American" regiments for the outstanding individual contributions of its foreign born elements. One need only scan the muster rolls of the average Union regiment to recognize the significant roll of the foreign born whose names appear there.
As a typical case of an immigrant who served most admirably in a non ethnic regiment, I can state the record of Michael Dougherty, buried in St. Mark's Cemetery in Bristol, Pennsylvania who enlisted in a company of cavalry composed of mostly Irish immigrants from the Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia, which was mustered into the 13th Pennsylvania cavalry regiment. The majority of this regiment were native born. For valor in action in Virginia in 1864, Dougherty received the Medal of Honor.
It is easier, however, to chronicle the service and record of regiments wholly or mostly composed of a particular foreign origin, in order to illustrate the role of these troops in the Civil War. The listing which follows attempts to name some of the more famous of the foreign units.
German speaking elements
Immigration from the German speaking areas of Europe, including the as yet un-united German states, Austria, Switzerland, Alsace-Lorraine, etc. was particularly heavy prior to the Civil War, mainly because of economic and political troubles which culminated in the revolution of 1848. These new settlers had not had enough opportunity to become assimilated and retained their language and customs despite their intense loyalty and feelings for their new homeland.
The Germans, or "Dutch" as they were derisively called (Deutsche is the German word for "German," hence the confusion with the name for Hollanders) were resented by their native born neighbors, as are all new immigrant at the 1st Battle of Bull Run.
McClellan granted Blenker permission to form a division of German regiments from the Army of the Potomac.
Blenker's German Division
1st Brigade: (Stahel) 8th, 39th, 45th N.Y., 27th Penn. 2nd Brigade: (Steinwehr) 29th, 54th, 68th N.Y., 73rd Penn. 3rd Brigade: (Bohlen) 41st, 58th N.Y., 74th, 75th Penn., 4th N.Y. Cavalry with Schirmer's, Wiedrich's, Sturmfels' Artillery batteries.
The division was assigned to Fremont's corps in the Mountain department and the Shenandoah Valley. Command passed to Carl Schurtz. The division under Schurz was incorporated into Franz Sigel's corps of Pope's Army of Virginia. In September of 1862, shortly before Antietam, the army corps was reorganized and the German division now mixed with American regiments became the IX Corps of the Army of the Potomac, initially under Sigel, then entrusted to Oliver O. Howard just before the battle of Chancellorsville. Transferred to the Western army, the corps merged with the XII Corps to form the XX Corps in April 1864. The XX Corps served under Sherman in the West until the end of the war. By the time of the consolidation the German character of any unit larger than a regiment had been lost through field losses, muster out, conscripts and an admixture of Americans.
One unique regiment forming an original part of the Blenker division is noteworthy. The "Garibaldi Guards" (the 39th New York Volunteer Infantry) was composed mainly of Italians and Germans, but with a unique admixture of men included real Zouaves from Algiers, foreign legionnaires, Cossacks, Indian Sepoys, Turks, Slavs, Swiss, Spaniards and Austrians. Its commander, Colonel D'Utassy, was a Hungarian who had been a circus trick rider. He proved to be a rogue, however, later spending time in prison. The unit was uniformed in the distinctive green and plumes of the Italian Bersaglieri -- light Infantry.
Also from the book "Damn Dutch: Pennsylvania Germans at Gettysburg" by David Vuluska:
This is the first work to highlight the contributions of regiments of Pennsylvania Dutch and post-1820 immigrant Germans at the Battle of Gettysburg. On the first day, the 1st Corps, in which many of the Pennsylvania Dutch regiments served, and the half-German 11th Corps, which had five regiments of either variety in it, bought with their blood enough time for the federals to adequately prepare the high ground, which proved critical in the end for the Union victory. On the second day, they participated in beating back Confederate attacks that threatened to crack the Union defenses on Cemetery Hill and in other strategic locations.
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