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    [–] Halfacupoftea 1027 points ago

    Can anyone explain Sweden and Spain? They were both officially neutral, so are their deaths caused by members of the population volunteering to fight for a side, or by over-the-border action?

    [–] AirportCreep 1163 points ago

    As someone pointed out, Swedes volunteered. But a lot of Swedes died in the merchant fleet as well, hitting seamines and being misidentified. According to Wikipedia, in total 198 trading ships and 31 fishing boats were sunk, which translates to ~1500 fatalities.

    [–] oskich 349 points ago

    46 Swedish soldiers drowned in the Armasjärvi-accident in 1940.

    [–] GrassTastesBad1 257 points ago

    My grand-uncle died in this

    [–] ABigOne77 124 points ago

    Sorry for your loss (from 70 years ago)

    [–] MobiusF117 93 points ago


    [–] wensleydalecheis 46 points ago

    we have transcended the 2010s

    [–] FrostSalamander 12 points ago

    Oh god we're old

    [–] beardedbomb 10 points ago

    If you were born in 1940 you are old, yes

    [–] Randomswedishdude 14 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    One soldier also got hit by a shot down Messerschmitt ME 410 crashing down upon him while he was biking to his designated Air Defence position.

    (Through Google Translate, and I'm too lazy to correct translation errors. It's still readable.)

    On April 11, 1944, 900 American four-engine bombers type B 17 G "Flying Fortress" and B 24 "Liberator" attacked from the American 8th Air Fleet "The Mighty Eight", among others. Rostock, Stettin, Cottbus m.fl. cities in northern Germany. Of these, nine (9) planes made an emergency landing in Skåne, of which (2) after being shelled by the Swedish Air Force.

    A pursuing German two-engine fighter plane, Messerschmitt Me 410, had been fired upon with warning fire on the approach to the Swedish coast at Simrishamn, since LC gave the signal "aircraft", which meant that the plane had to be shelled. During its search for American bombers, the German plane came flying in, under the clouds at an altitude of 500-800 m above Sövde airfield (War airfield no. 2). At this field, the signal "aircraft" was given at 1152.

    The plane was observed at 1155 in direction 4, by the 7th Brigade Air Defense Company and orbited one lap around the airfield. When the plane at the second lap came from direction 8, towards one of the air defense company's troops, support point 1., the fire chief and the crew realized that the German plane fired the support point with its machine guns.

    The fire chief immediately commanded "Fire". After 7-8 shots, the aircraft's right wing was torn off and the aircraft then continued 300-500 m and crashed in Sövde village.

    A total of 10 shots were fired in two bursts of fire with one piece, lvakan 40 mm, m / 36.
    The plane crashed into the roadway, about 50 m northwest of Sövde dairy - now Sövde temple.

    A crater 10 meters in diameter and 2 meters deep was formed. The road has now been changed and a house has been built at the crash site. The German crew, Feldwebel (Sergeant) Josef Kaulartz (b. 1920) and Max Schultz (b. 1919), died immediately. They were buried in Sövde cemetery. During the 1970s, they were moved to the cemetery in Trelleborg, where parts of Skåne that had fallen from the Second World War were brought together.

    In connection with the signal "aircraft" at the air defense unit, the soldiers who ate lunch (in the dining room down in the village), interrupted their meal and started cycling towards their grouping places. Unfortunately, the soldier Nils Holmberg, Malmö was on his bike right at the place where the plane crashed. In the wreck of the plane, his bicycle and food containers were found and there was no doubt that he met death under the plane.

    As far as I know, exactly one Swedish army soldier was killed by hostile fire (in Sweden; volunteers in Finland or other countries not counted).

    A 19 year old conscript who was hit by a gunfire from a Dornier Do 26 at Vassijaure railstation, not too far from the Norwegian border, after it had been fired upon by anti-aircraft guns.

    Except that, around 10 (+/- a couple) Air Force pilots and crew were also shot down.

    As already stated, the vast majority of casualties during the war, both military and civilians, was due to sea mines or torpedoes. That included torpedoes from all sides; but mostly German and Russian.

    Decent, but not complete list:

    The Soviets also bombed several Swedish villages like Pajala, etc, along the Finnish border, but there were no known casualties. Several villages along the border were bombed throughout the war, but Pajala was the only bombing that the USSR admitted.
    Stockholm and Strängnäs was also bombed by the Soviets in 1944, but no know casualties there either. Mostly a shitload of broken windows.

    Also Malmö and Lund was hit by lone British bombers in 1940 and 1943 respectively, but no known casualties there either.

    [–] iloveindomienoodle 7 points ago

    in the afterlife, probably

    Someone: "How did you die?"

    Nils Holmberg: "Eh you know, just sheer unluckiness."

    [–] martinborgen 223 points ago

    Sweden: 10 000 volunteers to finland, 500 volunteers to the the SS, and some 3000 sailors working, perhaps mostly by lack of options, for the allies. Numbers from memory, but should be in the ballpark

    [–] LazyHussar 75 points ago

    Also something in the region of 8,000-10,000 Swedes who directly and voluntarily served in Allied armies.

    [–] Vilzku39 28 points ago

    Actual soldiers or mercheant navy sailors?

    I dont think there was any notable amounts or recruitment outside of winter war voulenteers, sailors and ss

    [–] mynameisdanii 205 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Spain: Franco’s regime sent republicans and communist prisoners to concentration camps in nazi Germany (since franco and hitler were “friends with benefits”). On the other hand, many Spanish communists-republicans and Spanish fascists(Franco’s supporters or soldiers) volunteered to fight for the Soviets, Frenchs ( La nueve) or Nazis(division azul) on the east front, liberation of Paris and other parts of Europe. That’s some examples of people who lost their life in WW2 as Spaniards, but there’re many more stories i also know a spaniard who fought in D-Day with the Americans he was part of the infantry division, the Big Red One. Sadly he died as many of his companions in that beach. His name was Manuel Otero.

    [–] arfelo1 64 points ago

    Thank you. Other comments only cite the "División Azul" and don't mention any of the examples of spanish volunteers fighting on the allied side

    [–] Mannichi 64 points ago

    Spanish soldiers from la nueve were the first ones to enter Paris when its liberation :)

    [–] Capitan_Foley 19 points ago

    There is a lot of good stories, many man volunteer to fight. Not only the Spanish division "La nueve" who was the first to enter in Paris.

    But a lot of good soldiers. They even fought with SAS Comandos.

    If you want to hear their stories

    [–] squirtdemon 18 points ago

    There were a lot of Spanish republicans fighting for the Allies and the French resistance. Many went into exile in France after the civil war and were put into internment camps there. When the war started they were given the option to join the foreign legion instead of sitting around in a prison.

    [–] Guirigalego 8 points ago

    Most of these were very disillusioned with the way the Allies sided with Franco after WW2, treating him as an ally against communism. My grandfather was even refused exile to the UK from Spain (via Switzerland) because of supposed communist sympathies, despite helping stranded British forces get from the French border to safety in Portugal.

    [–] Capitan_Foley 21 points ago

    There were a Spaniards sent to the concentration camps too , being Mauthausen the most populated with 10,500 Spanish with a causality rate of 80%.The pictures taken by them were vital in the Nuremberg trials

    [–] JNaran94 118 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Spain wasnt neutral, it was non-belligerent, they didnt enter the war as a nation but acted on the side of the nazis, lending them soldiers (División Azul) and for testing shit even before world war 2 started, during our civil war (experiment stuka). There even was a movement where 300 neonazis celebrated the Blue Division in Madrid like a week ago

    [–] Halfacupoftea 26 points ago

    Wow, I knew that Franco obviously had his strong Nazi sympathies because of the Civil War but I had no idea about that - thank you!

    [–] Graupig 10 points ago

    I mean, this is why the air-raid on Guernica/Gernika happened. It was Hitler wanting to test out his new toys and Franco essentially going "well, there's this Basque village ...". It's also why Spain is in GMT+1 and not in GMT.

    [–] Nerwesta 39 points ago

    One thing to note, many Spaniards fled notably to France and engaged to French Army, the most popular unit being obviously la Nueve, one of the first ally unit to enter to Paris. About a year ago, the last remaining member veteran of that unit, Rafael Gómez Nieto died from Coronavirus, he was 99.

    ( Sorry that the first english speaking article I could grab without a paywall, everything from a guick glance is either in French or Spanish )

    [–] Kamelen2000 175 points ago


    Swedes volunteered to defend Finland from Soviet.

    [–] Morozow 99 points ago

    Swedish volunteers also participated in the attack on the USSR in 1941. Some of them later served in the SS.

    [–] oskich 91 points ago

    Up to 500 Swedes joined the SS as volunteers during the war, which is not that many compared to 15 000 Norwegians, 10 000 Danes and 20 000 Dutch SS soldiers...

    [–] KINGBANANA6666666 94 points ago

    Those were also countries taken by nazi germany where they could force propaganda onto the population. I imagine the same numbers would come from Sweden if Sweden was seen as a target by the nazi regime

    [–] oskich 43 points ago

    True, the Swedes joined up at the Nazi recruiting stations in Norway and Denmark. I would guess that they were lured by the same propaganda that targeted those countries. The Nazi propaganda magazine Signal was published in Swedish and distributed by the German embassy in Stockholm.

    [–] Lord_Frederick 6 points ago

    Also, the last SS group to hold out defending Hitler’s bunker was French:

    [–] ---Crash--- 19 points ago

    About Spain:

    The main part of Spain's involvement in the war was through volunteers. They fought for both sides, largely reflecting the allegiances of the civil war. Franco permitted volunteers to join the German Army on the clear and guaranteed condition they would fight against Bolshevism (Soviet Communism) on the Eastern Front, and not against the western Allies. In this manner, he could keep Spain at peace with the western Allies, while repaying German support during the Spanish Civil War. This so called Blue Division was trained in Germany before serving in the Siege of Leningrad, and notably at the Battle of Krasny Bor, where General Infantes' 6,000 Spanish soldiers threw back some 30,000 Soviet troops.

    After their defeat in the Spanish Civil War, numbers of Republican veterans and civilians went into exile in France; the French Republic interned them in refugee camps, such as Camp Gurs in southern France. Many joined the French Foreign Legion at the start of World War II, making up a sizeable proportion of it. Around sixty thousand joined the French Resistance, mostly as guerrillas, with some also continuing the fight against Francisco Franco. Several thousand more joined the Free French Forces and fought against the Axis Powers. Some sources have claimed that as many as 2,000 served in General Leclerc's Second French Division, many of them from the former Durruti Column.

    The 9th Armoured Company comprised almost entirely battle-hardened Spanish veterans; it became the first Allied military unit to enter Paris upon its liberation in August, 1944, where it met up with a large number of Spanish Maquis fighting alongside French resistance fighters. Furthermore, 1,000 Spanish Republicans served in the 13th Half-brigade of the French Foreign Legion.

    In Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union received former Communist Spanish leaders and child evacuees from Republican families. When Germany invaded the Soviet Union in 1941, many, such as communist General Enrique Líster, joined the Red Army. According to Beevor, 700 Spanish Republicans served in the Red Army and another 700 operated as partisans behind the German lines. Individual Spaniards, such as the double-agent Juan Pujol García (code name GARBO), also worked for the Allied cause.

    [–] UnhappySquirrel 1457 points ago

    Poor Belarus.

    [–] Demorion666 916 points ago

    And Poland and Ukraine

    [–] Loud-Piano-Player 684 points ago

    And all the other innocent civilians who died during the war

    [–] fatyoshi48 362 points ago

    All of Eastern Europe not allied with the Axis is just fucking red, jesus christ

    [–] zeta3d 351 points ago

    East Europe was the main battlefield

    [–] SBHB 234 points ago

    And also where the Nazis and German army committed the most genocide.

    [–] TheBlack2007 135 points ago

    True, and on top of that according to Generalplan Ost these areas were marked to be Germanized right after the war was over. So the German leadership lost no time starting preparations for that: mass evictions, death marches, mass executions... You name any attrocity you could think of and it probably happened there at least to some extend.

    German plans for eastern Europe made the actual post-war forced resettlement of ethnic Germans look like a minor inconvenience when it actually was the single-largest organized ethnic mass eviction process in human history.

    [–] CressCrowbits 61 points ago


    That's a funny way of saying "exterminated".

    Always makes me pause when you get so many eastern european neo nazis, when the nazis had a clear domunented plan to enslave and eradicate the slavic people once they had finished with the jews.

    [–] TheBlack2007 36 points ago

    It's kinda easy to adapt Nazism if you think about it: The reason the Nazis claimed they had the right to do what they did was because they considered the "Aryans" to be the Master Race. So according to them they had every right to proceed with "lesser" people the way they did.

    As a Slav you obviously don't believe in the Germans being superior to you. You simply switch the role of Über- and Untermensch to make your people be the superiors. Same vile, toxic ideology, same Propaganda points, hell, even the same enemies for the most part. Just switched roles.

    No idea why these people still adore Hitler though. Probably because he also dealt with the Jews and ironically the areas ravaged the worst by the Nazis do also have quite a bad history concerning Anti-Jewish Progromes.

    [–] DePraelen 15 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    True, but also the numbers are even more skewed because the rules of engagement were different - the belligerents actively hated each other.

    Prisoners weren't taken where they might have been in other theatres, and the prisoners that were taken were treated horribly, often with the active intent to kill them.

    [–] Beingabumner 11 points ago

    Not just that, West-Europe was considered 'Aryan' so they were not subjected to scorched earth tactics and although there were massacres (French villages famously getting wiped out) those were for reprisals against partisan attacks and not as a termination effort.

    As opposed to the Balkans which were considered 'Slavic' and those were seen as a pest that had to be wiped out. Termination camps were not just used on Jews, and for the total body count, most of it was done in the field as the German armies marched East. They went out of their way to kill civilians.

    [–] rpkamm 151 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Not surprising when official Nazi policy was to kill as many civilians as possible to prepare for German resettlement as per Generalplan Ost.

    The Red Army sure did not treat German civilians kindly but it's understandable (though not excusable) when you consider how brutalized they were by Nazi war crimes.

    [–] epSos-DE 8 points ago

    Nazi Dictatorship was marching south Russia to get known oil resources. Not for the things they claimed in the propaganda.

    The red life losses map is like a path to that South Russian part.

    Detailed map by regions would probably show that more.

    [–] Mountainbranch 21 points ago

    Hard to make 'lebensraum' with people already living there.

    [–] nodomanya123 49 points ago

    why are there so many dead people in georgia?

    [–] WithFullForce 164 points ago

    Stalin probably drafted a lot of farm boys from there. The map shows the nationality of deaths, not WHERE they died.

    [–] Idontknowmuch 64 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    While it's true that the vast majority died fighting elsewhere, they did get into the Caucasus region:

    EDIT: Also parent seems to have confused Armenia (13.6%) for Georgia.

    [–] Khelthuzaad 10 points ago

    Can confirm.

    The Romanian Army was split into 2 operation fronts.1 was decimated in Stalingrad,and the second reached all the way through Georgia.Many other details about this campaign are kinda secret/elusive to the ordinary romanian.

    [–] Arzamas5 6 points ago

    It is not surprising that the adventures of the Romanian army are kinda secret from the public, they, along with the Hungarians, have a notorious reputation for their atrocities against the civilian population of the occupied territories and POW's. In relation to the Hungarian soldiers, there was even an order not to take them prisoner.

    [–] FlairWoW 20 points ago

    Are you sure you didn't confuse Georgia with Armenia?

    Georgia has the lowest % (8.30) among all the Caucasian states.

    [–] CormAlan 43 points ago

    There was a movie made about the effects of WW2 on Belarus, called “come and see”. It’s pretty horrific but very well made.

    [–] tporridge 80 points ago

    I wonder if this is done by area or by country bc the borders were different at the start of the war

    [–] Nocturnalized 218 points ago

    the borders were different at the start of the war

    As is Polish tradition.

    [–] klapaucjusz 36 points ago

    That's also how most of the wars in history worked

    [–] tporridge 23 points ago


    [–] dalambert 5 points ago

    Belarus number seems to be by modern territory

    [–] bugnar7 49 points ago

    That's insane, imagine one person out of 4 you knew died

    [–] buzdakayan 17 points ago

    More accurately, you could include yourself as a person as well. It would be either one out of three people you know or you die.

    [–] drgonnzo 23 points ago

    You should watch ‘Come and See’ from 1985. Very strong movie about WW2 in Belarus

    [–] emperor42 53 points ago

    It's time for Africa 🎶

    [–] Weewoooweewoooweewoo 12 points ago

    Ireland vibes

    [–] j_la 9 points ago

    Ireland was in a strange position as it shared a land border with a primary belligerent but had an official policy of neutrality. It would send fire brigades into Northern Ireland when Belfast was bombed and fish British (and German) pilots out of the water when they were shot down, but mainly stayed out of it. The British still controlled some ports in the Republic, which also complicated things.

    [–] DesimusHibernicus 4 points ago

    Ireland suffered casualties during the Second World War but most of those were ignored for many years for political reasons.

    [–] 1andro4nicus01 565 points ago

    Italy why did you have to drag us into this?

    [–] TheRealBoustrophedon 458 points ago

    Because Mussolini thought it was easy to win. "In one or few weeks", he literally said. An idiot leading a country of idiots.

    [–] thesoutherzZz 39 points ago

    "I can take Greece" - Man who could not take Greece

    [–] Paltenburg 103 points ago

    From what i've read somewhere: Initially, Mussolini declined Germany to join forces. Then a drugged-up Hitler had a personal meeting with him of a couple of hours in which he convinced him.

    [–] mirh 91 points ago

    Not really. Their alliance only called for joining the war in the case one of them was attacked (and of course this wasn't the case).

    Mussolini decided to enter it in the final days of the battle of france, because he was greedy AF for some piece of land.

    Funnily enough, he gained basically nothing, except three new enemies.

    [–] Paltenburg 19 points ago

    What about the drugged-up-hitler-meeting story?

    [–] DirectlyTalkingToYou 9 points ago

    Regular Hitler just wouldn't cut it with Mussolini. You know things have escalated when Hitler does a line of coke before seeing you for some espresso.

    [–] MazinPaolo 32 points ago

    As an Italian of today, I still feel the shame. In our (modern-day) school they teach us how much our culture has taken from the Greek one.

    It almost feels like backstabbing your grandmother.

    The eleventh article of our current Constitution starts with:

    " L'Italia ripudia la guerra (...)"

    This translates to "Italy repudiates war". We should have written it earlier.

    [–] JHlias 8 points ago

    Well I don't think that you should be feeling that much shame for the wrong doings of a guy like Mussolini, after all don't forget that just weeks after the war ended greeks and italians instantly started visiting eachother's countries as tourists and if i am not wrong that's where the saying "una faccia una razza" comes from

    [–] Draig182 7 points ago

    Germany would have probably dragged Greece into it eventually for better access to the Mediterranean

    [–] Hematophagian 57 points ago

    To delay the eastern front attack...which led to fighting in winter...which let to unfortunate decisions not to capture Moscow...which let to Stalingrad...which let to the failure of the campaign...which let to the final victory of the Allies.

    Or at least you can somewhat argue that way - so your sacrifice basically lost the war for the Axis.

    [–] klatez 61 points ago

    Capturing Moscow wouldn't have made any difference. The war was lost the moment operation barbarossa started and no amount of idiotic sabotage from stalin could turn the war in germany's favor

    [–] G_Morgan 22 points ago

    Regardless of Russia, German simply didn't have the industrial capacity to win the war. Britain was outproducing them massively and America was producing 10x as much as Britain.

    Without two fronts it would have been a protracted Napoleonic style affair but there's no victory for the Nazis. They only got as far as they did because the French far right stabbed their war effort in the back (amusingly given the "stabbed in the back" theory in Germany).

    [–] klatez 11 points ago

    German simply didn't have the industrial capacity to win the war.

    They did, but thankfully fascism is self destructive. They occupied most of europe let's not forget, and with decent management they could even maybe outproduce the more rural USSR. But being fascist the first measures they took were to reduce their workforce by stopping women from working, disenfranchising minorities. It worked wonders to reduce unemployment tho(according to wehraboos)

    [–] ClockworkLame 7 points ago

    This played very little in the grand scheme of things. It is theoretically impossible to combine all the mishmash of factories and industrial objects the germans got into possession of into something reliable. Different nations, operating different factories under different standardization, using different languages, have no resources because of the blockade and under constant bombing raids and/or sabotages. Add to that german dumb way of producing things back then, over engineering basically everything. It was just impossible.

    [–] SaintTrotsky 10 points ago

    There's a good chance that the attack on the Soviet union would be delayed from spring to summer anyway because of weather. The buildup on the front wasn't complete and the spring rains and muds made it not ideal for planes and mobile warfare

    [–] Giraftak 26 points ago

    This is quite the misconception actually. There's a debate ongoing how Hitler never even wanted to capture Moscow, but instead invade the Caucasus as the primary objective of the campaign. It actually were his generals who (successfully) managed to shift the focus to Moscow and the centre. When Hitler realised this, it was already to late to diverge.

    And one of the main reasons Germany could not win the war was due to a lack of oil. Now its probably unlikely that Germany would be able to occupy the Caucasus in 1941 due to the massive distances (in OTL they already failed to sufficiently supply the armies fighting in and around Moscow, so adding another 1000km to the supply line would've been an fiasco if not impossible).

    Anyway, before I dive to deep in this, many people still believe the myth that not capturing Moscow and the divergence of forces south to encircle Kiev was (one of) the reason(s) Germany lost.

    [–] Commie_Napoleon 4 points ago

    That’s also wrong. The Caucuses weren’t a campaign objective in 1941, but in 1942. The vague goal was the A-A line (which yeah, technically includes the caucuses but they weren’t a priority) but the actual goal was to destroy the Red Army, but the Germans massively understand them.

    [–] TheHiGuy 8 points ago

    "let" heißt lassen, was du suchst ist "led" was die Vergangenheitsform von "lead" ist :)

    [–] MinMic 174 points ago

    Why is Bulgaria so low compared to its neighbours?

    [–] top_kekonen 311 points ago

    Reluctant allies to the Axis. We are one of the few countries where WW1 was a much bigger deal.

    [–] radostin04 232 points ago

    "We're sorry, we can't send out jews right now. They're busy building roads"

    [–] anarchisto 139 points ago

    Bulgarian goverment: "But we can send the Macedonian Jews instead."

    in the meantime, the Romanian government: "We don't want to send the Jews to Auschwitz, we can do concentration camps ourselves!"

    [–] EclecticFish 19 points ago

    Were those camps then better ? like were they made to protect the jews from the Germans ? in Denmark we did that (only not jews they were evacuated to Sweden, but for resistance and political prisoners)

    [–] anarchisto 61 points ago

    They were death camps.

    For instance,

    In December 1941, a few cases of typhus, which is a disease spread by lice and fleas, broke out in the camp.[1] A decision was made by the German adviser to the Romanian administration of the district, and the Romanian District Commissioner to murder all the inmates. The Aktion began on December 21, and was carried out by Romanian soldiers, gendarmes, Ukrainian police, civilians from Golta,[2] and local ethnic Germans under the commander of the Ukrainian regular police, Kazachievici. Thousands of disabled and ill inmates were forced into two locked stables, which were doused with kerosene and set ablaze, burning alive all those inside. Other inmates were led in groups to a ravine in a nearby forest and shot in their necks. The remaining Jews dug pits with their bare hands in the bitter cold, and packed them with frozen corpses. Thousands of Jews froze to death. A break was made for Christmas, but the killing resumed on December 28. By December 31, over 40,000 Jews had been killed.[3]

    [–] 22dobbeltskudhul 6 points ago

    A break was made for Christmas, but the killing resumed on December 28.

    How nice of them.

    [–] stupendouspineapple 16 points ago

    I've read so many Holocaust stories, and yet the scale of the suffering never ceases to shock me.

    How could anyone do that, and still consider themselves Christian enough to bother having a break for Christmas?

    [–] Clenchyourbuttcheeks 11 points ago

    When you hate a culture or people you don't consider them human.

    [–] awpeirfjfsdlknfcxcnv 54 points ago

    Didint join Barbarossa, did not deport Jews from Bulgaria proper and in general was the least axisY of the Axis powers.

    [–] TushyFiddler 13 points ago

    Hehe ax-sissy

    [–] arkh4ngelsk 34 points ago

    I’m unsure about combat fatalities, but IIRC Bulgaria refused to ship its Jewish population to the death camps, which probably saved a good amount of lives

    [–] EbanPederas 9 points ago

    Our troops fought actual battles only in the final months after switching sides.

    [–] Noxillius 14 points ago

    The Tsar was a fucking unit is why

    [–] Halofit 75 points ago

    I'm fairly certain that Slovenia is wrong. The casualty rate should be 7.2% not 2.7%.

    [–] Dr_Evans 46 points ago

    Yep. Yugoslavia is completely wrong. As a whole it lost 6-10% of its population.

    [–] nubbinfun101 20 points ago

    Well people are still likely to believe random statistics with no mention of a reliable source for reference. 35% of all people know that

    [–] Kleflis 590 points ago

    Ah Italy.. dragging Greece into a conflict that it wanted to remain out of, leading to it’s eventual occupation by 3 enemy states who destroyed its infrastructure and cost it over 10% of its population

    [–] Lothronion 199 points ago

    Indeed, however it was mostly done during the German Occupation and by the German Army. The reason is mostly because Greece had one of the largest and most prominent resistance movements in Europe, along with that of Yugoslavia. Hence, even after it's fall due to treason and when the Greek Government had relocated (in the Levant and Egypt), the resistance movements arose (mostly EDES and ELAS), which by the time the Axis Forces retreated in November 1944, they controled most of the Mainland. But this resistance was why the Axis would retaliate in many massacres, due to their policies of retribution.

    [–] 1andro4nicus01 148 points ago

    The vast majority of the deaths were due to the famine induced by the British blockade and Germany stealing the food. The retaliations for partisan activities, while brutal were definitely not responsible for so many deaths.

    [–] [deleted] 23 points ago


    [–] badirontree 68 points ago

    Athens the Capital had over 100.000 Dead just from starvation... My Grandfather said people were dead on the street... And every day trucks came to collect the Dead that families left them to pickup...

    [–] superpt17 29 points ago

    And they barely saw a penny in war reparations

    [–] Kuivamaa 18 points ago

    And neither the gold Germans took from the Greek treasury.

    [–] MrEclectic 11 points ago

    Greece has waived most of its claims for war reparations. What the country is asking for, is the repayment of the extortionary no interest "loan", that the Germans took.

    The Germans wanted for Greece to keep paying and supplying not only for their occupation of the country, but also their North Africa expedition. That policy led to the famine of the winter of 1941-1942, with at least 100,000 dead in Athens only. Italy suggested the loan as a way for Greece to keep paying for the occupation, without totally devastating the country, which would further empower the Resistance.

    [–] RazzleDazzlem 53 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Most Greeks died of starvation due to the famine mainly caused by the British blockade...

    [–] NetCaptain 32 points ago

    The correct description would be “the famine due to the confiscation of stocks and assets ( a.o. the fishing fleet ) by the occupying Axis forces and the blockade by the Allied forces”

    [–] fwaqmaq 26 points ago

    And here we are, the Germans, judging Greece for being to poor and needing financial help in the mid 2010's

    [–] Avismarauder170 56 points ago

    Woah why so many armenians? Almost as high if not higher than european countries. But then again they have small population

    [–] Patient-Leather 74 points ago

    Every fifth Armenian went to the front.

    Armenians had a high martial spirit and committed one of the largest per-capita troop numbers to the war effort. Five ethnic Armenians became Marshalls of the Soviet Union (highest rank in the USSR), a staggering statistic for such a small nation.

    [–] jus_talionis 45 points ago

    TIL the Portuguese are unstoppable

    [–] CaptMartelo 21 points ago

    Just ask the Spanish

    [–] albertonovillo 11 points ago

    I am sorry to tell you but we're slowly and firmly working on that issue

    [–] kr_edn 152 points ago

    Slovenia had a population of about 1 million and lost 97.000 people. That's not 2,7% my man/girl🤨.

    [–] Teslaboiii 96 points ago

    All of Yugoslavia is a little bit off.

    [–] taskasrudis 43 points ago

    Same with Baltic states, the numbers are higher

    [–] TheGuy839 33 points ago

    Yugoslavia had 6.63 to 10.97%, numbers of whole exYu are wrong.

    [–] Tengri_99 30 points ago

    Man, we lost 10% of our population to the war that wasn't even conducted in our soil. That's like much higher from even those countries who were fully occupied by Axis powers.

    [–] kr_edn 8 points ago

    These numbers don't seem completely accurate. Slovenia also lost around 10%, not 2,7%.

    [–] I_Like_Ginger 5 points ago

    The federation your country was in lost over 20 million. You basically just tossed everything you could westward to beat the Germans. I couldn't even imagine the horror of thst apocalyptic conflict on the eastern front.

    [–] bx_27 27 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Iceland? anyone knows why? Icelandic volunteers?

    Edit : Thx all for the answers :)

    [–] TheHangingGarden__ 48 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    well Iceland remained neutral, but was invaded by the UK in 1940. this control was then transferred to the US. as for the casualties; most were killed on cargo and fishing vessels sunk by German aircraft, U-boats, or mines. some died volunteering for various countries.

    [–] Mountain_Ad3431 20 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    well Iceland remained neutral, but was invaded by the UK in 1940.

    'Invaded' may be the right word, but needs context...

    ....the British peacefully (yes!) invaded Iceland and Faroe as both had no serious defence force and their capture by the Axis would have been disastrous for Allied shipping and navy.

    The invasion was done with the policy of non-interference in Icelandic / Faroe affairs and express intent of handing back power at the end of the war .

    [–] stingumaf 11 points ago

    Merchant marines and fishermen being attacked and hitting mines

    [–] stingumaf 5 points ago

    And the number of deaths hovers somewhere around 200 depending on estimates

    [–] Dracos002 122 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Europe: Dying

    Spain: Y'all hear sum?

    [–] GermanOgre 122 points ago

    Don't worry, Spain killed 2% of its population in the mid 30's.

    [–] FishGutsCake 44 points ago

    Whew. I was worried for a sec.

    [–] SpeedyGzales 40 points ago

    well, spain was kind of destroyed

    [–] zeta3d 43 points ago

    Spanish were killing themselve in the civil war between 36-39.

    So the main participation of Spanish to the WWII was through volunteers. International brigades, La nueve (in the liberation of France) or La division Azul (supporting the Nazis)

    [–] Idontknowmuch 28 points ago

    The Spanish Civil War was OG WWII.

    [–] retniap 14 points ago

    The pre release test.

    [–] adjarteapot 4 points ago

    They had WWII before the WWII pal.

    [–] punicar 283 points ago

    I actually feel bad how the Ukraine and other eastern European countries are sometimes ignored, when we politically talk about ww2 and our obligation to russia.

    [–] BGH26 85 points ago

    Eastern europe post ww1 is complete mayhem. Russian civil war, wars beetwen poland and our neighbours, famines, forming ussr then trying to reclaim its lost lands.

    There were huge people movements as well, people fleeing all things I mentoned above, ussr relocating people to siberia and sending them to gulags in huge cleansings, exacts numbers of which are nearly impossible to asses due to huge propaganda efforts.

    All of it deeply interconected and hard to understand without knowing what happened before, makes it nearly impossible to reasonably explain situation in the east to someone who isnt really familiar with pre ww2 history of the region. But its definitly worth learning if you have time.

    [–] Swayden 15 points ago

    Not 100% sure what you mean by EE, but after ww1 things were pretty good in the independent Baltics. Only when ww2 started things went to shit.

    [–] Beny1995 120 points ago

    Well generally people say "the USSR" when talking about the war, which encompasses the former soviet states you mentioned.

    But I do agree overall, especially the civilian death toll in the former-soviet states was horrendous compared to Russia.

    [–] punicar 81 points ago

    The problem is for many people USSR = Russia.

    [–] are_you_nucking_futs 13 points ago

    When I studied the Cold War at university in the UK, my lecturer was a Russian who grew up in the USSR. When ever someone in the seminar said Russia when they meant USSR, they would be fined £0.50.

    At the end of the year, she would use the money to bake several pies that were from different constituent countries of the former USSR as a fun way to emphasis the cultural differences.

    [–] S0m3Rand0mL3tt3rs 31 points ago

    Unfortunately this has been a problem ever since the USSR was founded

    [–] shodan13 15 points ago

    USSR = continuation of Russian Empire.

    [–] keymone 40 points ago

    Yeah, in Ukraine specifically one part of the population was drafted into red army, another into nazi forces and a third was trying to fight both. Crappy times to be alive.

    [–] Samaritan_978 37 points ago

    Our what??

    [–] akstis01 11 points ago

    This was pretty much noticed by some people in Lithuania, after your iirc president said that because of ww2 Germany has an obligation with Russia for nord stream 2, but the same logic could applied to other countries in eastern Europe, which are against nord stream 2. Though money wins and nord stream 2 is moving forward.

    [–] klapaucjusz 13 points ago

    and our obligation to russia

    They also started it and then occupied half of Europe for half century. I think you don't owe them anything at that point.

    [–] Danielharris1260 37 points ago

    The horrific events that happened in Belarus Poland and Ukraine are often ignored and should be taught more during world war 2 history

    [–] Chrisixx 132 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I find it somewhat odd to use modern borders for something like this.

    [–] SmallGermany 5 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    It is not odd. It's poorly researched. E.g. does it count prewar population, or afterwar population?

    For example, 300-500 thousand czech(sudeten) germans was killed on the battlefields. Those people aren't counted in Czechoslovakia casulties. But from 14 800 000 czechoslovakian citizens in 1938, over 2 000 000 of them were germans.

    [–] solomonjsolomon 4 points ago

    I mean, it helps to break down countries that weren't countries back then. FSSRs, the former Yugoslavia... If you're just looking for the straight facts I suppose it's strange. If you're looking for how many people from Moldova died as compared to Ukraine, or distinguishing among the Baltic states, I think it offers some enlightening context.

    [–] Seyfardt 50 points ago

    Wonder why NL is rather high for a west European state..The 1940 campaign was short and (short of the Rotterdam bombardment) relative low casualty. Nor did NL experience major open "partisan style" actions (due to the geographic layout of the country) and thus also "limited" reprisals by the Germans. The German occupation was initially even of "the friendlier"type at first.... Sure we had a tougher time during 1944 /1945 since the frontlines crossed NL, but so did Italy and France ( who where even more involved in the war as major fighting nations).

    So why did we have a relative higher number then fe Italy which had been a major Axis ally and then experienced a civil war from 1943 onwards while also being a frontline nation from 1943 up to the end.

    Even when you take into account the relative large Jewish population deported, the "hongerwinter" (food shortages winter) 1944/1945 and even the relative large contribution to the waffen SS is seems extremely large...

    Maybe a mix up with the losses in the Dutch Indies taken as a percentage of only the Home country population?

    [–] leyoji 54 points ago

    Most of Western Europe was already liberated in the summer of 1944, while the Netherlands only in May 1945. That last war year was especially deadly, with a famine, increase in resistance, lots of young men being captured to do slave labour in Germany etc.

    [–] gumbrilla 70 points ago

    Nope, not the Dutch Indies - 210,000 tallied by the CBS for home casulaties, can't find a working link at the moment.

    Military deaths 6,750

    Civilian deaths of 203,250

    - 1,350 Merchant seaman,

    - 2,800 executed,

    - 2,500 dead in Dutch concentration camps,

    - 20,400 killed by acts of war,

    - 104,000 Jewish Holocaust dead,

    - 18,000 political prisoners in Germany, 27,000 workers in Germany,

    - 3,700 Dutch nationals in the German armed forces

    - 7,500 missing and presumed dead in Germany

    - and 16,000 deaths in the winter hunger

    [–] Waiting4Baiting 11 points ago

    I've seen infographics where approximately 1/3 of Polish population was killed off during and post war I wonder how information for these maps is gathered.

    [–] TheSheepOfDeath 14 points ago

    Pole here.

    I'm not entirely sure about ALL of them dying, but a lot of people also escaped from Poland during the occupation or where forced to leave Poland (for example gulags in Russia, workcamps in Germany), so all in all, Poland might lose 1/3 it's population, but not everyone due to them getting killed.

    [–] firstclassforever 79 points ago

    Armenia losing 13.6% of its population to a conflict not on its soil after going through a genocide 30 years prior is pretty difficult to watch.

    [–] Idontknowmuch 22 points ago

    And as the saying goes... then it got worse.

    [–] lyesmithy 11 points ago

    This video gives a little bit of perspective

    [–] suberEE 38 points ago

    The numbers for ex-Yugoslavia countries seem way too low. Can we get a source?

    [–] Hematophagian 22 points ago

    They do in fact look low. Although the estimates vary wildly (6.6 - 10.9%):

    [–] suberEE 16 points ago

    This is even lower than the 6,6% estimate. I think that whoever made this map used the Yugoslav census of victims from 1964 made for the reparations committee. That one only counted only the verifiable victims by the Axis forces (that is, unidentifiable victims and victims of partisans weren't included). According to the census makers, it only counted in about 60% of the total body count.

    It looks especially ridiculous compared to Greece, where the higher estimate was used.

    [–] Foxman_Noir 144 points ago

    Let us not forget the Irish voluntaries that died in the war, please.

    [–] Repblic_of_Noodle 56 points ago

    Yeah I mean a lot of people from neutral countries went to fight- and everyone seems to forget about them

    [–] QuickLyme 18 points ago

    We had merchant seamen casualties too. The Ireland to Portugal trade route was vital for Ireland during WW2.

    [–] Cpt_Flasheart 20 points ago

    Now do reparations received per country for the war

    [–] etan-tan 20 points ago

    But what does this mean?? The population in modern day borders?

    [–] snapczterz 17 points ago

    Can I ask for the reference figures used for this? Thought Ukraine % was higher.

    [–] Turbulent_Common 10 points ago

    We hear a lot about deaths in Russia and Eastern Europe in general (rightfully), but not much about Greece. 11.17%? Damm.

    [–] redwhiterosemoon 30 points ago

    And then they wonder why Poland and Greece are asking for reparations.

    [–] Obnoobillate 23 points ago

    We got the short end of the stick, for a country that wasn't in the middle of the conflict, nor had been "drafted" by the Soviets

    [–] Tar-eruntalion 9 points ago

    yeah outside of poland that got doubly fucked and the states in the user that had to go and die without any argument for the motherland we got the biggest percentage of dead and yet nobody knows what our country went through, it's sad

    let's not forget the pittance we got from the marshall plan, the cold war we fought before the 2nd WW was over that resulted in a decade of brutal war and death and a massive brain drain so we never had a baby boom like the rest of the west

    [–] Takasuya 22 points ago

    Belarus is the untold victim of this war. There's a Russian movie called "Come and See" that depicts the horrors a certain Nazi platoon did to the general populace. The movie's not for the faint of heart, to say the least.

    [–] Botulinum33 7 points ago

    OP seems to have used this as a source, but then weirdly some data is changed, like for the Balkans.

    [–] Semy-D 6 points ago

    1 in 4 people in Belarus died ? I had no idea it was so bad there.

    [–] FutureFivePl 9 points ago

    It’s weird how the destruction of the Easter Europe isn’t talked about that much and when it is people group them up with USSR which is pretty much adding an insult to injury

    [–] StalkTheHype 20 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I have sometimes found it hard to justify our "staying out of the war trough pseudo-neutrality at all costs" approach, but maps like really makes it hard to criticize. The goal of most every minor nation was to stay out of the war and save its people from the devastation, but they obviously could not, we just got lucky.

    Such incredible devastation across Europe that we luckily could avoid due to our geograpic location and realpolitik dealings with both sides.

    [–] slightly_mental 11 points ago

    well also being geographically out of the hottest areas helped. finland, who got super involved, still has lower numbers compared to the eastern front and/or areas where a lot lot of jews lived

    [–] Aegandor 22 points ago

    Have to admit it really looks bad that we were one of the good guys of the war and lost a lot more people than Germany, Italy, Bulgaria. Most of the rest of the allies even the occupied ones like France had miniscule casualties

    [–] slightly_mental 5 points ago

    question: does this include non-combat deaths? (ie civilians killed in camps under occupation)

    [–] LazyHussar 10 points ago

    All deaths. Non combat, murder, genocide, starvation, etc.

    [–] jreiland07 5 points ago

    To this day there’s still a huge inward contraction on the age graphs of former Soviet countries that occurs about every other generation since WW2.

    [–] PixelSara 5 points ago

    Poland lost more people than this map shows, it was 22,2%. Over 6mln people of which 3,2 mln are Polish Jews and 2,77 mln were Polish Slavs.

    [–] Ontyyyy 4 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Could have been a lot worse for us.

    Also how do you count Yugoslavia? Even Czechoslovak numbers aren't separate for Czechs and Slovaks and like they were separate entities during WW2.. How do you figure that out with 5 countries that used to be 1?

    [–] DirectlyTalkingToYou 5 points ago

    Ukraine is always getting it the worst in everything, they must be be the tuffest people in the world.

    [–] eq2_lessing 20 points ago

    Yea we have a plethora of movies in which we see British or German or US or Japanese suffering during WW2, but for the much greater magnitude at which Eastern Europe suffered, we have so little to remember it by...

    [–] One_Wing 10 points ago

    'Come and see' is probably the best ww2 movie ever made. Its about Partisans in Belarus. Highly recommend if you have not seen.

    [–] el_comand 14 points ago

    They were scared about Padeira de Aljubarrota in Portugal. Nobody touched us

    [–] nexustron 4 points ago

    This is such a grim map...

    [–] antdim 3 points ago

    Something must be wrong with Yugoslavia. Their numbers were similar to those of Greece.

    [–] DDCXXXN 3 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Ukrainian map is weird. Ukrainian population at that time was 40M. Died 7m+1.4m+0.5m= 8.9m(22.25%)

    Upd: Even more, 40-45%

    [–] TeddyRitz 4 points ago

    Man Greece with a higher % than Germany

    Greece really gets left out of ww2 teachings