The Role of the Wehrmacht and the Police in the Annihilation of the Jews, the Prosecution and Postwar Careers of Perpetrators in the Police Force of the Federal Republic of Germany
During the World War II, the German army collaborated in various degrees with the SS and the police in mass annihilation of Jews and other victims, especially in the USSR and Yugoslavia. In rare cases when perpetrators were prosecuted under the Nazi regime, the prosecuted were pardoned by the highest authorities (Hitler, Himmler, etc.). Those who refused to participate in the mass killings were never punished by their superiors; therefore, participation was voluntary to a great extent. Only a small number of perpetrators was prosecuted after the war in the German Federal Republic, and in many cases their penalties were not commensurate with their crimes. Some of the perpetrators had brilliant careers as police officers in the 1940s and 1950s before they were brought to trial.