Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Baltic Corps

This information was translated from the Lithuanian newspaper "Musu Pastoge" . It was published several years ago and details the activities of the Baltic Corp just after the war. It was written by Balys Nemeika (now deceased) who was in the Corps. Part I

Men in Displaced Persons camps could serve in the American or English occupying armies while they lived in Germany. After the war, soldiers wanted to return home and the occupying forces needed to search elsewhere for men to work. People from the Baltic states were considered as it would be much cheaper than retaining their own soldiers. There was no lack of volunteers; the camps while waiting for immigration were monotonous, food was plain and there was not nearly enough. The cold war had also begun with the USSR and men believed that if conflict arose then the volunteers could serve with the Lithuanian army. Some believed they may be looked upon more favourably if they wanted to immigrate to America.

About mid 1947, Baltic Corps were instituted in the English zone. About 30 squads were created each with between 30-32 men. Each squad leader was Lithuanian. The rationale was to work at various army objectives. Works squads worked in garages, kitchens, and as drivers.

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