ages, ranks, and duties.) As an S.D. policeman,
Barbie had to do only a short term of military service instead of the regular
term. From September 5 to December 3, 1938, he was a private in the 39th
Infantry Regiment. |
On April 9, 1939, Klaus became engaged to Regina
Margareta Maria Willims, twenty-three, daughter of a post office clerk. She had
not completed her secondary education, but had taken a six-month course in
cooking. In 1936 she worked as a maid in Berlin, and in 1937 she settled in
Düsseldorf, where she took care of children in the day nursery of the Nazi
Women's Organization. She too was a member of the Nazi Party, No. 5,429,240.
They were married in Berlin on April 25, 1940. The witnesses were
Klaus's associates, S.S.-Obersturmführer Emil Goebel and Paul Neukirchen.
Klaus himself, who had been Oberscharführer since September 1, 1939, was
promoted five days before his marriage to S.S.-Untersturmführer.
When the Wehrmacht invaded western Europe, the police followed it. On
May 25, 1940, Klaus Barbie reached The Hague, where he was assigned to the
S.D.-Security Police's Bureau for Jewish Affairs. But game was more plentiful
in Amsterdam. The young S.S.-Obersturmführer Barbie had passed his
examination and been promoted on November 9, 1940, and he was awarded the Iron
Cross, Second Class, on April 20, l941 was to work, from early 1941
until March 1, 1942, in the Bureau for Jewish Affairs in the city of Rembrandt
and, later, of Anne Frank.
He must have gotten a leave in the fall of
1940, for his daughter was born on June 30, 1941, in Trier.
On May 21,
1942, a new assignment sent Barbie to France, where he was made head of the
S.D.-Security Police Exterior Commando Force in Gex, near the Swiss border. In
November 1942, he was made head of the Gestapo's Department IV in Lyon.
I have read what two of his associates in Lyon thought about him. To
the fanatical Nazi S.S. Alfred Lutjens, Barbie was "a first-class comrade,
intelligent and dynamic, the very soul of the Gestapo." To S.S. Kurt Abendroth,
"Barbie's excesses were not always reported to Paris. Barbie was the dynamo of
the Department." "Soul" and "dynamo" those two words say what they mean:
Barbie was frenzied in his activities.
An S.D.-Security Police
secretary, Hedwig Oudra, who was twenty in 1943, says that she considered
Barbie to be excessively brutal. He frequently rebuked one of his deputies
named Floreck for not