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Einsatzgruppe egypt

The meaning of «einsatzgruppe egypt»

Einsatzgruppe Egypt (German: Einsatzgruppe Ägypten) was an SS unit led by SS-Obersturmbannführer Walther Rauff, which was formed in occupied Greece during World War II.[1]

Historians Klaus-Michael Mallmann and Martin Cüppers [de], based on archival research, state that the unit's purpose was to carry out a mass killing of the Jewish populations in the British mandate of Palestine and Egypt.[2] Despite the word "Palestine" never being mentioned in the archival documents, the researchers state that the unit's objective was to go there in order to enact systematic mass murder of Jews.[3] Given its small staff of only 24 men, Mallmann and Cüppers theorize the unit would have needed help from local residents and from the Afrika Korps to complete their assignment.[4] On 20 July 1942 Rauff was sent to Tobruk to report to Rommel, Commander of the Afrika Korps. But since Rommel was 500 km away at the First Battle of El Alamein, it is unlikely that the two were able to meet.[4][5] Former Iraqi prime minister Rashid Ali al-Gaylani and the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini played roles, engaging in antisemitic radio propaganda, preparing to recruit volunteers, and in raising an Arab-German Battalion that would also follow Einsatzgruppe Egypt to the Middle East[6]

According to historian Haim Saadon, Director of the Center of Research on North African Jewry in World War II, Rauff's documents show that his foremost concern was assisting the Wehrmacht, and his plan for this was to place the Jews in forced labour camps. In relative terms, the North African Jews escaped the Final Solution.[7][8]

The plans for Einsatzgruppe Egypt were set aside after the Allied victory at the Second Battle of El Alamein.[9]

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