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Sniper's Badge (3rd grade – gold trim)
|Awarded by Nazi Germany|
|Awarded for||successes achieved with a rifle as a sniper|
|Campaign||World War II|
|Established||20 August 1944|
The sniper's badge was instituted on 20 August 1944 by Adolf Hitler. The introduction of remission read: "... in recognition of the individual shooter with a rifle as a sniper, and for appreciation of the successes achieved here I introduce to the army and the Waffen SS, the sniper badge."
By order of the High Command of 14 December 1944, it was also made available to the other armed services.
The sniper's badge had three grades:
- First grade (no trim) for at least 20 enemy kills
- Second grade (with silver trim) for at least 40 enemy kills
- Third grade (with gold trim) for at least 60 enemy kills
The enemy kills were counted from 1 September 1944. Close quarter kills made were not to be taken into account. Every enemy kill had to be confirmed by witnesses and reported to the unit.
The sniper's badge was made of greenish-gray cloth, embroidered and oval shaped. It depicts a black eagle's head turned to the right with white plumage, ochre yellow-colored eyes and closed beak. The eagle's body is covered by three oak leaves and a left mounted acorn. The edges of the ribbon are sewn and the three stages are distinguished by a circumferentially sewn cord in silver (2nd grade) or gold (3rd grade).
The badge was worn on the right forearm of the uniform.
Sniper's badge and capture
The German High Command issued an order in 1945 that the sniper's badge had to be removed before capture, since predominantly Soviet troops immediately shot every captured enemy sniper wearing it.
- Jörg Nimmergut: Deutsche Orden und Ehrenzeichen bis 1945. Band 4. Württemberg II-Deutsches Reich. Zentralstelle für wissenschaftliche Ordenskunde, München 2001, ISBN 3-00-001396-2.
- Brian L. Davis: Uniformen und Abzeichen des deutschen Heeres 1933–1945. Motorbuchverlag.
- Christian Zentner: Soldaten im Einsatz. Jahr Verlag.