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What did happen in 1940?

May 1940

At the end of May, several weeks after the Dutch had surrendered, the Germans started to recruit for volunteers.
Hitler had meanwhile given permission to form the SS-Standarte "Westland".
The SS-Ergänzungsstelle in Den Haag, under command of SS-Hstuf. Leib was given the orders. It was supervised by the SS-Hauptamt of Gottlob Berger.

As an result of this 2,448 men signed up and after medical checks between a third and half of them were designated as 'Dienstuntauglich' (unfit for service) for the Waffen-SS!

June 1940

The first Dutch group which was drafted belonged to the 'Sport und Spiel-Bewegung', formed by men living in Germany and also members of the NSB of Mussert. Most of them served in the 'Brandenburger' who had played a role during the invasion of Holland in early May. Because of their political beliefs they were immediately sent to München-Freimann, to serve in the SS-Ersatzbatallion 'Deutschland'.

During their training lots of difficulties took place. Dutch volunteers being misguided by the propaganda, differences in believes and goals. Many
of them were surprised that they were 'only' given an military course, based on the hard training of the SS-Verfügungstruppe (VT).
The German officers and NCO's were used to this, due to their membership of the Jungvolk and later the Hitlerjugend.

As a result of this the Dutch were given a choice:
- Return to Holland,
- Sign for 6 months, 2 or 4 years or 'for the duration of the war' and serve in the 'Westland'-regiment.

September 1940

Formation of a new SS-Division (mot.). largely depended on the 'friendly' countries like Norway, Danmark and The Netherlands.
It happens under supervision of SS-Gruf. Hans Jüttner - Chef SS-Führungshauptamtes -. Btl.Kdr. I./Art.Rgt. VT - SS-Ostubaf. Herbert-Otto Gille - received orders to prepare the activation of a new SS-Artillerie Regiment. The SS-VT division was at the time stationed in the Amersfoort (The Netherlands) area, just after the French campaign for rest and refitting.


After cancelling plans for Operation 'Seelöwe', the invasion of England, large units from the SS-Verfügungsdivision are available.


Regiment Westland collect for 'Winterhilfswerk' (WHW) in München.
The 'Stellenbesetzung' of the SS-Artillerie Regiment 5 (AR 5) is completed by SS-Ostubaf. Gille.


Activation and formation of the new SS-Division.

Main body is formed by the SS-VT regiment GERMANIA. The regiments GERMANIA (Germans) and WESTLAND (Germans mixed with Flamish and Dutch volunteers) stationed in München and NORDLAND (Germans mixed with Norwegian and Danish volunteers) which was stationed in Vienna and Klagenfurt.
Commander was former commander of the  SS-Inf.Rgt. (mot.) Deutschland, SS-Brigadeführer Felix Steiner.

Division HQ and Artillery - Between Augsburg and München;
Rest of the division - rest of Germany and Austria.


SS-Brigadeführer Felix Steiner named to be commander of the 5.SS-Inf.Div. (mot.) GERMANIA


Division HQ and Artillery - Between Augsburg and München;

SS-Inf.Rgt. Germania; Rgt.Kdr. SS-Standartenführer Reichsritter von Overkamp in Wien, Austria;
SS-Inf.Rgt. Westland; Rgt.Kdr. SS-Standartenführer Hilmar Wäckerle in Klagenfurt, Austria;
SS-Inf.Rgt. Nordland; Rgt.Kdr. SS-Standartenführer Fritz von Scholz;
SS-Art.Rgt. 5; Rgt.Kdr. SS-Obersturmbannführer Herbert-Otto Gille in Dachau;
SS-Pionier Btl.5 - Dresden;
SS-Nachrichten Abt. 5 - Nürnberg;
SS-Aufklärungs Abt. 5 - München-Freimann;
SS-Nachschub Abt. 5 - Berlin-Lichterfelde


5.SS-Inf.Div.(mot.) GERMANIA renamed into 5.SS-Inf.Div.(mot.) WIKING. (Tgb.Nr. 518 of 29.1.1941)

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