additional subdivisions of the ss included the gestapo and the sicherheitsdienst (sd) organizations.  between 1925 and 1929, the ss was considered to be a small gruppe (battalion) of the sa.  his ultimate aim was to turn the ss into the most powerful organization in germany and most influential branch of the party.  members of the ss were indoctrinated in the racial policy of nazi germany and were taught that it was necessary to remove from germany people deemed by that policy as inferior. the ss was entrusted with the commission of atrocities, illegal activities, and war crimes.  the gestapo’s transfer to himmler was a prelude to the night of the long knives, in which most of the sa leadership were arrested and subsequently executed. their role was to police the population and oversee the activities of the ss men within their district. wherever hitler was in residence, members of the rsd and fbk would be present. this was primarily done to emphasize the ss as being independent of the wehrmacht. “ in its defense, the ss insisted that its armed formations had been hampered by having to fight piecemeal and were improperly equipped by the army.  the lssah and elements of the ss-vt participated in the ground invasion of the battle of the netherlands.  danes, dutch, norwegians, swedes, and finns volunteered to fight in the waffen-ss under the command of german officers.  the ss was built on a culture of violence, which was exhibited in its most extreme form by the mass murder of civilians and prisoners of war on the eastern front.  the greatest extent of einsatzgruppen action occurred in 1941 and 1942 in ukraine and russia.  after the start of the war, himmler intensified the activity of the ss within germany and in nazi-occupied europe.
by 1944, it became standard practice to rotate ss members in and out of the camps, partly based on manpower needs, but also to provide easier assignments to wounded waffen-ss members. by 1944, the ss had purchased 75 percent of the mineral water producers in germany and were intending to acquire a monopoly.  the allies continued to make progress in the liberation of france, and on 4 august hitler ordered a counter-offensive (operation lüttich) from vire towards avranches.  captured ss soldiers who were part of kampfgruppe peiper were tried during the malmedy massacre trial following the war for this massacre and several others in the area.  by this time, on both the eastern and western front, the activities of the ss were becoming clear to the allies, as the concentration and extermination camps were being overrun.  members of the sd were specially trained in criminology, intelligence, and counter-intelligence. their task was to take a direct role in the deportation of hungarian jews to auschwitz.  in 1941 the einsatzgruppen were sent into the soviet union to begin large-scale genocide of jews, romani people, and communists.  in their role as desinfektoren (disinfectors), ss doctors also made selections among existing prisoners as to their fitness to work and supervised the murder of those deemed unfit.  the ahnenerbe (ancestral heritage organization) was founded in 1935 by himmler, and became part of the ss in 1939.  most of the estonians were fighting primarily to regain their independence and as many as 15,000 of them died fighting alongside the germans. in august 1944 it was transferred to the auspices of the waffen-ss as the indische freiwilligen-legion der waffen-ss.  austrian ss members served in every branch of the ss.  in addition to those tried by the western allies, an estimated 37,000 members of the ss were tried and convicted in soviet courts.  the international military tribunal declared the ss a criminal organization in 1946.  british writer gitta sereny, who conducted interviews with ss men, considers the story untrue and attributes the escapes to postwar chaos and hudal’s vatican-based network.
 members of the waffen-ss were involved in numerous atrocities. when hitler decided to act against the sa, the ss was put in charge of eliminating röhm and the other high-ranking sa officers. in 1938, a battalion of the leibstandarte was chosen to accompany the army troops in occupying austria during the anschluss, and the three regiments of the ss-vt participated in the occupation of the sudetenland that october.  in its defence, the ss insisted that it had been hampered by having to fight piecemeal instead of as one formation, and was improperly equipped by the army to carry out its objectives. the leibstandarte remained independent and was increased in strength to a reinforced motorised regiment.  in france, the ss totenkopf was involved in the only allied tank attack in the battle of france. they forced a bridgehead across the river and waited for the ss totenkopf division to arrive to cover their flank. was transferred into the reich division to replace germania; the remainder were grouped into three independent brigades and a battle group in norway.  the ss division wiking and the leibstandarte were with army group south, heading for the ukraine and the city of kiev.  das reich lost 60% of its strength and was still to take part in the battle of moscow.  in 1942, the waffen-ss was further expanded and a new division was entered on the rolls in march. by the end of the year, the waffen-ss had increased in size from eight divisions and some brigades to 16 divisions.  for the battle of kursk, the ss panzer corps was renamed the ii ss panzer corps and was part of the 4th panzer army. the 21st waffen mountain division of the ss skanderbeg (1st albanian) was formed in march 1944 from albanian and kosovan volunteers, which as with other “eastern formations” were intended for use against “irregular forces”.
one regiment from the hungarian army was ordered to join, but they mostly consisted of hungarian and romanian volunteers. latvian waffen ss and german army units held out in the courland pocket until the end of the war. while the bulk of the waffen-ss was now on the eastern front or in normandy, the 4th ss polizei panzergrenadier division was stationed in greece on internal security duties and anti-partisan operations. in early september 1944, the ii ss panzer corps (9 ss hohenstaufen and 10 ss frundberg) were pulled out of the line and sent to the arnhem area in the netherlands. the advent of the warsaw uprising brought the soviet offensive to a halt, and relative peace fell on the front line. a heavy battle ensued, with the 5 ss wiking and 3 ss totenkopf destroying many of the soviet tanks. in february, the waffen-grenadier-brigade der ss “charlemagne” was upgraded to a division and became known as the 33rd waffen grenadier division of the ss charlemagne (1st french).  in march 1945, the x ss corps was encircled by the 1st guards tank army, 3rd shock army, and the polish 1st army in the area of dramburg. also present but not part of the 6th ss panzer army was the iv ss panzer corps (3 ss totenkopf and 5 ss wiking). among the men were french, latvian, and scandinavian waffen-ss troops.  the allgemeine ss was responsible for the administration of both the concentration and extermination camps.  with the invasion of poland, the totenkopfverbände troops were called on to carry out so-called “police and security measures” in rear areas.  during the nuremberg trials, the waffen-ss was declared a criminal organisation for its major involvement in war crimes and for being an “integral part” of the ss.  while the hiag leadership only partially achieved the goals of legal and economic rehabilitation of waffen-ss, falling short of their “extravagant fantasies about [waffen-ss’s] past and future”, hiag’s propaganda efforts have led to a reshaping of the image of waffen-ss in popular culture.
the schutzstaffel was a major paramilitary organization under adolf hitler and the nazi party in nazi germany, and later throughout german-occupied europe during world war ii.nit began with a small guard unit known as the saal-schutz made up of party volunteers to provide security for party meetings in munich. official website of the u.s. social security administration. the ss was the organization most responsible for the genocidal murder of an estimated 5.5 to 6 million jews and millions of other victims during the holocaust. the waffen-ss was the combat branch of the nazi party’s ss organisation. its formations included men from nazi germany, along with volunteers and conscripts, .
ss, abbreviation of schutzstaffel (german: “protective echelon”), the black-uniformed elite corps and self-described “political soldiers” of the nazi party. the ss (schutzstaffel, or protection squads) was originally established as adolf hitler’s personal bodyguard unit. it would later become both the elite the waffen-ss was the military branch of the ss. units of the waffen-ss took part in most of the major military campaigns of world war ii., . what does the ss stand for? what is your ss? who is eligible for ss? is social security giving extra money this month?
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