Hermann Behrends

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Hermann Johann Heinrich Behrends (11 May 1907 in Rüstingen, Oldenburg – 4 December 1948 in Belgrade) was a Nazi Party member and SS official with the rank of brigadier general (Brigadeführer).[1]

Born the son of a provincial innkeeper, he was educated to doctorate level in law at Marburg University but struggled to find employment in an economically depressed Weimar Germany.[2] He joined the Nazi Party in January 1932 and the SS the following month.[3] With no military experience he initially floundered but soon attracted the attentions of Reinhard Heydrich, who valued academic expertise, and he was transferred to the Sicherheitsdienst (SD).[4]

Becoming a close friend of Heydrich, Behrends was the first chief of the SD in Berlin.[1] He also served as Chief of Staff to Werner Lorenz in his capacity as head of the Hauptamt Volksdeutsche Mittelstelle (VOMI).[5] During the Second World War he was sent to Yugoslavia to lead the regional arm of the VOMI.[1] His star had fallen somewhat after Heydrich's death as Heinrich Himmler was unimpressed by him, sensing that he was too ambitious.[4]

On 5 July 1945, he faced charges from the British services in Flensburg. He was interned with the number 560294 in the Island Farm Special Camp in Bridgend, South Wales.[citation needed] On 16 April 1946 he was extradited to Yugoslavia. He was hanged in Belgrade on 4 December 1948.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Louis Leo Snyder, Encyclopedia of the Third Reich, Ware, Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions, 1998, p. 21, ISBN 9781853266843.
  2. ^ Valdis O. Lumans, Himmler's Auxiliaries: The Volksdeutsche Mittelstelle and the German National Minorities of Europe, 1933–1945, UNC Press Books, 1993, p. 50
  3. ^ Lumans, Himmler's Auxiliaries, p. 50-1
  4. ^ a b Lumans, Himmler's Auxiliaries, p. 51
  5. ^ Lumans, Himmler's Auxiliaries, p. 45