Ukrainian collaborationism with the Axis powers

Ukrainian Collaborationism With The Axis Powers

Ukrainian collaborationism with the Axis powers

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Initially during the military occupation of Ukraine by Nazi Germany, a number of Ukrainians chose to cooperate with the Nazis. Their reasons included the hopes of independence from the Soviet Union and past maltreatment by Soviet authorities.

However, the absence of Ukrainian autonomy under the Nazis, mistreatment by the occupiers, and the deportation of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians as slave laborers, soon led to a rapid change in the attitude among the collaborators. By the time the Red Army returned to Ukraine, a significant number of the population welcomed the soldiers as liberators. At the same time, more than 4.5 million Ukrainians had joined the Red Army to fight Germany and more than 250,000 served as Soviet partisan paramilitary units.

Initial attitudes towards German invasion

The German invasion of the Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa began on June 22, 1941, and by September the occupied territory was divided between two German administrative units the General Government and the Reichskommissariat Ukraine. The Germans had their own plans for Ukraine: it was to become Lebensraum, meaning it was intended for "Aryan" colonisation, with plans for eventual elimination of the local indigenous population as the Slavs were viewed as sub-humans by the Nazi idealology.Many...
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