|TRANSLATION OF DOCUMENT 498-PS
Source:Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression. Volume III. USGPO, Washington, 1946/pp.416-417
Fuehrer Order Concerning
The Fuehrer No. 003830/ 42 g. Kdos.
Fuehrer HQ, 18 Oct. 1942
1. For some time our enemies have been using in their warfare methods which are outside the international Geneva Conventions. Especially brutal and treacherous is the behavior of the so-called commandos, who, as is established, are partially recruited even from freed criminals in enemy countries. From captured orders it is divulged, that they are directed not only to shackle prisoners, but also to kill defenseless prisoners on the spot at the moment in which they believe that the latter as prisoners represent a burden in the further pursuit of their purposes or could otherwise be a hindrance. Finally, orders have been found in which the killing of prisoners has been demanded in principle.
2. For this reason it was already announced in an addendum to the Armed Forces report of 7 October 1942, that in the future, Germany, in the face of these sabotage troops of the British and their accomplices, will resort to the same procedure, i. e., that they will be ruthlessly mowed down by the German troops in combat, wherever they may appear.
3. I therefore order:
From now on all enemies on so-called Commando missions in Europe or Africa challenged by German troops, even if they are to all appearances soldiers in uniform or demolition troops, whether armed or unarmed, in battle or in flight, are to be slaughtered to the last man. It does not make any difference whether they are landed from ships and aeroplanes for their actions, or whether they are dropped by parachute. Even if these individuals, when found, should apparently be prepared to give themselves up, no pardon is to be granted them on principle. In each individual case full information is to be sent to the O. K. W. for publication in the Report of the Military Forces.
4. If individual members of such commandos, such as agents, saboteurs, etc. fall into the hands of the military forces by some other means, through the police in occupied territories for in-tance, they are to be handed over immediately to the SD. Any imprisonment under military guard, in PW stockades for instance, etc., is strictly prohibited, even if this is only intended for a short time.
5. This order does not apply to the treatment of any enemy soldiers who, in the course of normal hostilities (large-scale offensive actions, landing operations and airborne operations), are captured in open battle or give themselves up. Nor does this order apply to enemy soldiers falling into our hands after battles at sea, or enemy soldiers trying to save their lives by parachute after battles.
6. I will hold responsible under Military Law, for failing to carry out this order, all commanders and officers who either have neglected their duty of instructing the troops about this order, or acted against this order where it was to be executed.
[signed] Adolf Hitler
Distribution: [Listing omitted]
Faculty of Humanities, Languages and Social Sciences