Introduction in politics
Due to its strategical location, the region around Belgrade and Pancevo was always a deployment zone not only for combat units, but also for all kinds of imposters, fiddlers and other windbags. This file documents a whole bunch of issues and topics related to the activities of some of these folks before, during and after World War II.
A whole bunch of documents like this was declassified during the “Nazi War Crimes Disclosure Act” NWCDA from 1998. Bernhard Hänsel, Georg Kossack and a bunch of other people were pretty pissed off of the ignorance of politicians and diplomats when the wars in former Yugoslavia started and they did not just shrugged their shoulders, these folks were scientists, archaeologists and historians. Those old-school folks knew how to research and crawl through archives and they had their connections. Whenever somebody found something interesting regarding former Yugoslavia, their information reached Bernhard Hänsel, who then passed it to my grandfather. During that time, a lot of the elder generation of the Danube Swabians was still alive and well. Following WW II, the Danube Swabians are scattered across the World and everyone of them knew somebody who lived in the USA, Canada, Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil and whenever somebody found something related to a special region in former Yugoslavia, my grandparents located someone who knew someone who knew someone, if this is accurate enough. Whenever somebody felt the need to ease his conscience, or just wanted to have some glasses of wine and a long conversation regarding times gone by, these folks showed up at our house.
One especially appropriate topic documented in the file mentioned above is the fact that there was a training camp of the Abwehr, the German Intelligence Service GIS, located in Pancevo, the adjacent settlement of the birthplace of my grandparents. In the training camp in Pancevo, agents of the GIS were trained – among other things – in the manufacturing and handling of explosives for the usage behind enemy lines. This camp was managed by the local branch of the Abwehr, the Abwehrstelle AST Belgrade.