Coat of Arms of Krupki, Belarus
Coat of Arms of Krupki, Belarus
Wikipedia (User: EugeneZelenko) - Wikipedia
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Krupki Massacre

On September 18, 1941 the entire Jewish Ghetto, a community of 1,000 people were killed by the Nazis. The massacre was described in the diary of one of the German perpetrators. The first massacre involved 100 deaths near the grave yard, but a later killing spree killed roughly 900 other Jews in different location.

At first, the Germans told the Jews to gather together because that were being deported to Germany. But as the German forced then into a ditch, it was evident what the Germans has in mind. At this point, panic ensued.

"Ten shots rang out, ten Jews popped off. This continued until all were dispatched. Only a few of them kept their countenances. The children clung to their mothers, wives to their husbands. I won’t forget this spectacle in a hurry..."

Some of the Germans and Austrians involved in the incident were also injured during the panic. Very few, if any, of the local Belorussians, Roma/Gypsies or Poles supported the anti-Semitic attack and a few even actively opposed Nazi rule in their town altogether. Krupki was liberated by the Red Army during the June of 1944. Byelorussia was the hardest hit Soviet Republic in the war and remained in Nazi hands until it was liberated during the Minsk Offensive of 1944. The Jewish population of Byelorussia was devastated during The Holocaust and never recovered.

The Jews had been told that they were all being deported to Germany to work there. But many guessed what was in store for them, especially when we crossed the narrow-gauge line and proceeded to the bog. A panic arose and the guard had a hard job keeping the lot of them together. When we arrived at the bog all were told to sit down, facing in the direction from which they had come. Fifty yards away there was a deep ditch full of water. The first ten were made to stand by that ditch and to strip, down to the waist. Then they had to get into the ditch and we who were to shoot them stood above them on the edge. A lieutenant and sergeant were with us. Ten shots rang out, ten Jews popped off. This continued until all were dispatched. Only a few of them kept their countenances. The children clung to their mothers, wives to their husbands. I won’t forget this spectacle in a hurry…

— Senior Private First Class Heydenreich