Talk:Malmedy massacre

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Spelling: Malmedy, not Malmédy[edit]

The French name of the city is Malmedy. It neither contains an acute accent, nor any other diacritics. In the English Wikipedia, a kind of hyperforeignism seems to have occurred at some point, in which someone changed the spelling to Malmédy. But as is evident from the French Wikipedia pages about the city and about the 17 December 1944 massacre, and from the French-language version of the city's own website, the name does not contain any diacritics. Therefore I have removed the acute accents and moved the article from "Malmédy massacre" to Malmedy massacre. --Bwiki 00:49, 28 May 2006 (UTC)

Retaliatory Massacres?[edit]

There now a rather lengthy paragraph citing somewhat questionable sources detailing accusations of retalitory massacres by American soldiers. This was added after the O'Reilly section went up, so I suspect it was put up by an O'Reilly fan trying to defend him. If there is some respectable historical opnions that such massacres did take place, then they deserve mention, otherwise the paragraph should be removed. MarcusGraly 17:03, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

Um, that would be me, User:Jdlh. I wrote the section about the Chenogne massacre allegations. Yes, it was added after the O'Reilly section went up. In fact, it went up after an anonymous editor posted a citation to a source (see diff to revision as of 2006-06-03 16:30:59). I thought that wasn't good encyclopedia material, but I read the reference, did my own search for other sources, and came up with the paragraph you see. That was on June 3-4, and as of June 9, the text remains. "O'Reilly fan"? I also contributed to Bill_O'Reilly_controversies#Malmedy_massacre, and you will notice that I added two very specific references to ground the article in verifiable facts about what O'Reilly said. "respectable historical opinions"? I put five references in the Chenogne section, including to books published in 1964, 1965, and 1986. One of these books was published by the US Department of the Army. Take a look at the Wikipedia:Verifiability policy: "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth. This means that we only publish material that is verifiable with reference to reliable, published sources." So, please read the Chenogne section and its five reference citations, take a look at the sources themselves, and make comments here about your findings. --Jdlh | Talk 01:30, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
Verfiability does not mean some one wrote a book claiming it or posted it on a website. It means that it is the opinion of either the majority or sizable minority of experts. Again, I'm not knowlegable on this, so I'm not saying either way. But just because some neo-nazis wrote a book or a website claiming Americans massacred prisonors does not make it "Verifiable" MarcusGraly 16:31, 27 June 2006 (UTC)
Verifiability is defined at Wikipedia:Reliable sources. So, please read the Chenogne massacre article, this article, and their reference citations, take a look at the sources themselves, and make comments here about your findings. --Jdlh | Talk 01:11, 28 June 2006 (UTC)

I find it personally disgusting that people are now politicizing this article, which was initially about the massacre of American soldiers. Okay, we get it, Bill O'Reilly attempted use the Malmedy massacre to support his argument regarding crimes commited by American soldiers, but does this mean we should rewrite history to support Bill's claims? Take a look at the history [1] [2] of the article and see how the accusations of American wars crimes is larger than the substance of the actual massacre itself. I am removing the entire accusations paragraph, leaving "Afterwards, the order went out SS and Fallschirmjäger were to be shot on sight" which should be sufficient. If you want to re-add the paragraph, or trim it down, discuss it here first. Sysrpl 12:19, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Sysrpl, I appreciate your interest in this article. However, I disagree with you that the Chenogne paragraph represents "politicizing this article". Here's why:
  1. The Chegnogne paragraph represents verifiable (maybe not true, but verifiable with sources) historical information, and so it belongs in the Wikipedia. I considered creating a separate Chenonge article, with a stub about the town and this paragraph, but it seemed structurally premature to create an article for just one paragraph. I did a search at the time, and found no other place in Wikipedia that mentioned Chenogne. Hence I put the paragraph in this article. Looking now, I see that I missed something: way back on 2005-04-12 20:34:38, anonymous editor added a link in the List of massacres article, to an (as yet non-existant) Chenogne massacre article.
    So, I could support two options: either restore the Chenogne paragraph in this (Malmedy massacre) article, or restore it to a new Chenogne massacre article, with a further information link from the Aftermath section to that new article.
  2. The Chegnogne paragraph isn't about a Bill O'Reilly controversy. It doesn't mention Bill O'Reilly at all. It is historical information that is worth documenting regardless of whether O'Reilly mentioned it, or tried to mention it but flubbed and got it wrong, or never knew about it. In fact, I would argue that to exclude information about the Chenogne allegations, because someone might use it to defend O'Reilly, is itself a departure from Wikipedia's neutral point of view policy. This argues for restoring the Chenogne paragraph.
  3. You are right that the Chenogne paragraph has more text than the Malmedy massacre description. That is because the Chenogne paragraph is more deeply researched and better cited. Cutting the Chenogne paragraph is not the solution. Doing research on the Malmedy massacre and improving that part of the article is the solution. I dug up references to three books that mention the Malmedy massacre, and there are many others. There are a lot of specifics to be added, sources to be cited. If you would like to improve the article by taking this on, I would applaud you. I have done similar work to improve this article myself -- see my edits back in July, 2004.
So, Sysrpl, I believe the Chenogne paragraph should be restored (perhaps to a Chenogne massacre article with a link from here), and I challenge you to channel your energy into improving the account of the Malmedy massacre in this article. Your comments? Comments from others? --Jdlh | Talk 17:58, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
Great. I'll get you started in creating a Chenogne massacre article. Sysrpl 23:01, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
I'll go with that. I've refined the Chenogne massacre article, and edited the text in Aftermath here a bit. I've been wanting to get rid of the gratuitous German word Fallschirmjäger for a long time, actually. My encouragement to you to improve the Malmedy massacre content still stands. --Jdlh | Talk 05:57, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

Possible misunderstanding by Bill O'Reilly does not belong in article[edit]

Bill O'Reilly Accuses U.S. Army of Nazi War Crime On October 3rd, 2005, Bill O'Reilly, in a debate with General Wesley Clark stated that the 82nd Airborne were responsible for the Malmédy massacre, and that the victims were the Germans.

Transcript follows...

Gen. Wesley Clark: Because in the United States Army that I served in proudly for 34 years, we did not beat up and torture prisoners. Just a second, Bill ---
Bill O'Reilly: Yeah, but with all due respect, there were atrocities in Vietnam, there were atrocities in World War Two --

Clark: Yes, and they were found, and they were punished.

O'Reilly: -- in World War One, in the Civil War, and the Revolutionary War.

Clark: They were not condoned by the chain of command.

O'Reilly: Yes they were!

Clark: No they weren't.

O'Reilly: Lt. Calley, and Medina in Vietnam.

Clark: They were not condoned by the chain of command, those guys were court-martialed.

O'Reilly: You know -- listen, with all due respect --

Clark: And let me explain something. You go all the way up the chain of command --

O'Reilly: General! You need to look at the Malmedy massacre in World War Two, and the 82nd Airborne who did it!

OK, Bill O'Reilly is a fool who hasn't a clue what he's talking about. What's your point? →Raul654 20:16, 4 October 2005 (UTC)

Perhaps not to you or me, but apparently to a large percentage of Americans, O'Reilly is not a fool with no clue. By the early 21st century, American knowledge has declined to the point that the Malmedy massacre is considered to be an evil act by the American Army itself.

I saw that interview, and I don't think that is what O'Reilly said. Clark was talking over that sentence and it wasn't clear what O'Reilly was saying. He previously wrote an article published in the Jewish World Review [3], where he said "After German SS troops massacred 86 American soldiers at Malmedy in Belgium on Dec. 17, 1944, some units like the U.S. 11th Armored Division took revenge on captured German soldiers." I believe that that may have happened, especially considering the emotion that this massacre evoke among the troops.--Rogerd 17:50, 5 October 2005 (UTC)
The quote above is wrong. According to Fox, O'Reilly said the following:
O'REILLY: General, you need to look at the Malmady (ph) massacre in World War II and the 82nd Airborne.
Corrected the quote in the article, and reworded somewhat. He did not explicitly say that US forces were behind massacre, but he did indicate that this was what he meant. Bjelleklang - talk 20:47, 8 January 2006 (UTC)
Give me a good reason why a quote by a modern American windbag, expressing a kooky opinion shared by no one in academica, belongs in this *historical World War II* article. This belongs in the O'Reilly article, perhaps, but in the context of this article it is non-notable and not of encyclopedic interest on the topic. The inclusion of this here sure looks like obessiveness with modern politics is bringing things off topic. Unless someone can produce a link to more rational and/or academic paper/article/person making this arguement, I will be removing this item.-- 23:31, 8 January 2006 (UTC)
I agree that the whole "O'Reilly/Clark incident" has no place in this article. This isn't about what someone said about it in an obscure interview 60 years later, it is about the Malmédy massacre. This has nothing to do with O'Reilly's politics, that I sometimes agree with, and other times not, but this article is about an incident during WWII. --rogerd 01:10, 9 January 2006 (UTC)
Won't object! Bjelleklang - talk 01:28, 9 January 2006 (UTC)

It's not a misunderstanding - he did it again. This is notable. Fishhead64 06:54, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

I would agree. I imagine there'll be some people looking for accurate information and it'd be nice to have a definitive answer in the article saying what happened, at least until this thing dies down a bit. — ceejayoz talk 12:20, 2 June 2006 (UTC)
Agreed, this is bound to come up again; I've reproduced the original edit (now reverted) here at least until some consensus emerges:
==Misinformation Warning==

- In two separate Bill O'Reilly interviews with General Wesley Clark, once in October 2005 to discuss the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse and once in May 2006 to discuss the alleged Haditha incident, O'Reilly cited the Malmedy Massacre as an example that massacres have always occured in war including by US soldiers in World War II. In the May 2006 interview, O'Reilly told Clark, "In Malmedy, as you know, US Forces captured SS Forces who had their hands in the air and they were unarmed and they shot them down. You know that. It's on the record and documented." O'Reilly has not yet publicly admitted his mistake of reversing the situation and thus making it appear that the massacre near Malmedy was committed by US Soldiers on German SS Troops, instead of the other way around.

MSNBC news anchor Keith Olbermann corrected O'Reilly in no uncertain terms on his hour-long nightly newscast Countdown with Keith Olbermann on MSNBC. [4]

Bill O'Reilly is an insufferable idiot. And in 'best of three falls' with Charles During, I take Durning hands down.

It seems clear that O'Reilly refers to the aftermath which is the pertinent part of the massacre to his argument with Clark. Clark obviously understood this. However many people that dislike O'Reily have missed it in favor of a chance to criticize him.

I'm not sure about that. I couldn't care less one way or the other about O'Reilly, but the transcripts show that he said US troops committed the malmedy massacre. Then on the Fox transcripts, they changed it to "Normandy". You don't cover up a non-mistake. Of course the Normandy reference is nonsense since you can't retaliate five months in advance.
Anyway, O'Reilly is not the point. I simply think that if a popular media outlet spreads wrogn information (wittingly or unwittingly) it might be a good idea to explicitly correct it here. DMorpheus 14:59, 2 June 2006 (UTC)

I'm the one that submitted the original O'Reilly paragraph. I purposely put it in its own section called "Misinformation Warning" near the end with the intent to not make it a feature of the historical details. I guess I look at this addition as an "urban legends" stopper and was intended to serve as an assistance to those who like to fact check with Wikipedia. I think this paragraph would be removed at a later date when it's obvious that the "misinformation" is not circulating. I respect the historical purpose of the article, I think having a section near the bottom of any historical article that captures any current, newsworthy promulgatation of mistatements by public officials or widely-read media sources is reasonable. If the misinformation becomes a controversy in itself (and gets its own identity) then a separate article makes sense. One could argue that this should be put in Bill O'Reilly's page but I have two reasons to differ, this is one of many things that O'Reilly says and it might not be noteworthy enough compared to some of his other comments. This is not about O'Reilly as much as noting possible misinformation being spread in the public square about this historical incident, so putting it in O'Reilly's page might not be seen by one who has heard lets say a co-worker share this misinformation as fact without referencing O'Reilly as the source. So this person would go to the Malmedy page, and not the O'Reilly page. Personally, I wouldn't put the additional line about Olberman exposing O'Reilly's mistake which someone else added, because that focuses too much on O'Reilly. I wanted to focus on what as actually said as misinformation rather than the event itself.

So who was it that removed it, it only had an IP address and no user account. Can it be added back in until at least a named editor has reviewed it? Whidbey

I missed that a comment about this misinformation being put in the See Also section. This helps address what I mentioned above, however not sure whether See Also is the right subject heading. Whidbey

I was the one that added the smart-ass comment about O'Reilly getting beaten up by Charles Durning. Is that the one you're referring to? Sorry guys. [Chris]

O'Reilly's comments in both interviews with Clark, and Olbermann's commentary, are discussed with citations in Bill O'Reilly controversies#Malmedy_massacre. I'm changing the See Also link in Malmedy massacre to point there. I don't think this article needs anything more than that reference. --Jdlh | Talk 00:26, 3 June 2006 (UTC)

My 2 every occasion some goof gets their history wrong highly relevant to that history? If so, then most entries would consist mostly of such screw ups. O'Reilly isn't the first to get Malmedy history wrong and probably won't be the last. But his relevance to Malmedy will likely be non-existant within his lifetime. I agree with Jdlh's approach; limit the reference to See Also in this article. Christiandemocrat 18:51, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

I completely agree with Jdlh and Christiandemocrat. This article is about an incident in WWII where brave American soldiers were massacred. Some tv commentator's lack of knowledge about the incident has nothing to do with it. Maybe just a link in the "see also" section is all this needs. Have some respect. --rogerd 16:19, 6 June 2006 (UTC)
Wow, what a nutty edit-war in this article over the last two days! Raul654 and Viriditas, thanks for reverting all those inappropriate edits. Raul654, you were the one that changed the discussion of the O'Reilly controversy from a brief reference under See also to a paragraph under Legacy, back on 2006-06-04 10:52:34. Would you be willing to go back to a one-line See also? I think it might discourage some of these edit wars. Normally I would WP:Be bold and make the change myself, but you obviously care about this article too, and I'd like to have your buy-in. (And the other changes you made at the same time were fine, I think.) I think all the text needs to do is a) be visible to a diligent reader researching the O'Reilly controversy starting with Malmedy massacre, and b) point to Bill O'Reilly controversies#Malmedy_massacre specifically. Thanks to you and the other positive contributors here for your care and effort. --Jdlh | Talk 02:30, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
I would very much prefer not to for several reasons. First, see-also's are bad writing in general; if something is important enough to merit a mention, say it in sentences that put it into context; otherwise, it shouldn't be mentioned at all. Second, while I originally favored not mentioning it (see my above comment from october), the fact that O'Reilly did it again and caused a much bigger controversy makes it mention-worthy, in my opinion. The mention here isn't overly large, and points the reader to the more detailed version at Bill O'Reilly controversies#Malmedy_massacre, which I think is the right way to do things. Raul654 02:33, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
My mild preferences defer to Raul654's strong convictions. I'll go along with the current text. --Jdlh | Talk 04:35, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

Can we get rid of this sentence now tacked onto the end of the O'Reilly para.: "On the other hand, this anti-O'Reilly insert may have no releavance to the core of the article."-? I understand there's an argument about whether to mention O'R 's possible misrepresentation of the facts, but that should ALL be HERE, not in the article itself; looks very amateurish.

I agree. It was added only 3 hours ago by an anon, and I have no idea what it is supposed to be saying. Raul654 16:12, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

I would say O'Rilly incident definitely deserve mention as a trivia. Vapour

The June 8-9 edits by Stanley011 had the side effect (unintended, I'm sure) of deleting the link to the main article on the topic: Bill O'Reilly controversies#Malmedy massacre. I'm not going to get involved in the back-and-forth editing of this section, but I would like to see this link preserved in some form. If you are an editor that wants to make sure this controversy is covered right, I encourage you to apply your talents there, and let the discussion here be a brief summary. --Jdlh | Talk 01:51, 10 June 2006 (UTC)

Direct Bill O'Reilly quote corrected[edit]

The exact words quote "General! You need to look at the Malmedy massacre in World War Two, and the 82nd Airborne who did it" was resolved in the this talk page section. Sysrpl 11:53, 15 June 2006 (UTC)

Take Bill O'Reilly Quote Out[edit]

I suggest we take it out completely. I honestly do not see why it has a place here. A) This is an article about an event in history involving a massacre, which is one subject you definitely have to substantiate and be completely objectionable on. B) He's incorrect in his retelling of history, so he is deceiving the people who are looking to him for factual news! So, why is he even being quoted here? Now, I understand the historical reference to the situation not being clearly understood by the public today, but I'm sure we can find a better source than Fox News. Shadowrun 11:31, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

Agreed I say all references to Bill O'Reilly and his comments should be removed from this article. This article should be a stoic description of a moment history 60 some years ago. That people are attempting to politicalize this now to support or decry a television pundint's controversial statements is wrong, and that goes doubly so for an encyclopedia entry. Besides, all of this controversy is covered here in more depth. Sysrpl, 07:46:28 2006-06-16 (UTC)

This thread is a continuation of Possible misunderstanding by Bill O'Reilly does not belong in article section above, so I've moved the Retaliatory Massacres? section up and made this thread a subhead under Possible misunderstanding.... --Jdlh | Talk 23:20, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

There have already been many comments in favour of taking the O'Reilly content out of this article, and some comments in favour of keeping it there. It looks to me like a consensus but not unanimity in favour of deleting the O'Reilly reference altogether. Any proponents of keeping an O'Reilly reference care to state that case, in light of the whole discussion? Also, everyone please remember to sign your contribution with four tildes ~~~~. --Jdlh | Talk 23:20, 16 June 2006 (UTC)

Since no one is taking any action one this issue, I decided to delete the paragraph referencing Bill O'Reilly to expedite a vote. We can vote keep or delete, and provide a comment. I'll get the ball rolling. Sysrpl 19:04, 21 June 2006 (UTC)

I've reverted the deletion of the O'Reilly text from the article. I'm not comfortable with a sudden wholesale deletion while the discussion is open here on the Talk page. And I disagree that "no one is taking any action on this issue"; this article has seen over 60 edits in the less than three weeks since the most recent O'Reilly controversy came to this article on June 2, 2006. Let's allow a week come to a consensus here first, then take action. Sysrpl, if you'd like to accelerate the consensus, I request you to contact the people who were in favour of keeping the O'Reilly pararaph, and ask them to contribute to this discussion. Let's try for a consensus rather than a vote. I think it will be better. Perhaps you can take the lead on writing a consensus statement that we all can agree with. (See also Wikipedia:Resolving_disputes) --Jdlh | Talk 23:04, 18 June 2006 (UTC)
  • shorten and keep some brief description that O'Reilly described this incident as being committed by American soldiers upon German soldiers, and with a clear reference to the O'Reilly "Malmedy massacre" controversies article. I agree with DMorpheus that he did get it wrong before a large audience. The mention here must be enough to be recognisable by someone researching what O'Reilly said, and to point them in the right direction. --Jdlh | Talk 19:21, 28 June 2006 (UTC)
    abstain for now, let's get a consensus instead of a vote. WP:DR --Jdlh | Talk 23:04, 18 June 2006 (UTC)
  • keep Some brief description of what was said by O'Reilly (it will take more than a sentence; maybe a anvery short paragraph) with a reference to the O'Reilly "Malmedy massacre" controversies. It is unfortunate that he got it wrong, but he got it wrong before a large audience. DMorpheus 14:25, 20 June 2006 (UTC)
  • delete this article is about brave American soldiers, not some nutty TV person who's commentary will be forgotten soon. --rogerd 15:50, 20 June 2006 (UTC)
    • Comment: I believe this article is not about "brave American soldiers", it is a report of historical events and claims about them. To centre it around "brave American soldiers" is not Neutral point of view. We should evenhandedly report on brave American soldiers, American soldiers who do evil things, brave German soldiers, German war criminals, American-led miscarriages of justice, German neo-fascist propoganda, misguided American comentators... the whole story. It's an encyclopedia for all people, not just Americans. --Jdlh | Talk 17:07, 20 June 2006 (UTC) (who is American)
      Point well taken. But can you honestly say that in 20, 10 or even 2 years people will still be talking about this TV guy and what he said about this? There have been other writers and commentators who have said nutty things before and most of them are not in wikipedia. --rogerd 15:47, 21 June 2006 (UTC)
      That's a good point....but right now people are talking. Just as with money, information has a time value. Wiki costs nothing to edit. So my sense is, keep it for now. In two years (heck, probably much sooner) once everyone is rightly ignoring this little dustup with O'Reilly, it can be taken out and just put a reference in to the other article. But for now it should be kept. Just my two euros. DMorpheus 16:00, 21 June 2006 (UTC)
      I just wanted to point out that the Bill O'Reilly controversies covers the discussion already, and that bringing it into this article politicizes it. This article should be about World War II history and not a TV pundit's politically motivated rhetoric. Sysrpl 19:01, 21 June 2006 (UTC)
  • delete and add one short sentence in the legacy pointing to the O'Reilly "Malmedy massacre" controversies article. Sysrpl 19:03, 21 June 2006 (UTC)

O'Reilly comment should go here: Chenogne massacre, because this is what he (almost certainly) referred to - an apparent "revenge killing" for Malmedy - and depending on interpretation got mixed up or phrased misleadingly. Dysmorodrepanis 16:46, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Let's get serious. This would be like putting a complete rundown of the Jeremy Glick thing in the article about 9/11. O'Reilly isn't that notable that blow-by-blows of his many, many controversies have to go in the actual articles about the things that he runs his mouth about. Savidan 19:23, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

It might be worthwhile to include at least a single sentence and wikilink to the relevant article. To be honest I barely know who O'Reilly is and all I know of the controversy is based on the wikipedia articles. But it seems to be a topic for US readers, so it should be included in at least a minimal form.--Caranorn 20:36, 20 February 2007 (UTC)
No, it's not terribly notable even in the U.S. Let's not gunk up this article with his asinine commentary 50 years later that had no effect on the actual massacre. If you want to write about the substance, i.e. if there was retribution by the allies after the massacre, that's fine. But if it was mentioned once in an episode of Seinfeld...just move on. Savidan 18:30, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

Someone added a mention of Bill O'Reilly's mistaken comment about the Malmedy Massacre again. I've removed it per the above discussion. I think Wikipedia should record this misstatement, but the right location for that is in Criticism of Bill O'Reilly, not here. Unfortunately the editors there think this mistaken comment is not notable enough to record there. I encourage those who want Wikipedia to have a record to lobby the editors at that article. --Jdlh | Talk 17:46, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

User: (talk), you restored the mention of Bill O'Reilly's mistaken comment. I would appreciate it if you would contribute to the discussion here about the merits of keeping this mention. The consensus of the discussion to this point is that the mention doesn't belong here. I'll hold off removing that text for 24 hours, in the interests of avoiding an edit war. But if you don't persuade other editors, someone may delete it anyway. --Jdlh | Talk 20:27, 14 September 2007 (UTC)
Also, User: (talk), you deleted some of my Talk comments. That is against the Talk page guidelines: "Never edit someone's words to change their meaning." Please do not do that again. --Jdlh | Talk 20:27, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Sorry about deleting your comments last time, I did that by accident. I do think that the reference to O'Reily's comments should be included. I am concerned that just because a consensus has been reached, that makes it right. We should strive for including as much accurate information as possible. We have no idea what Bill's meaning was, all we have is what he said, which was categorically wrong, and there should be a record of that. Holocaust deniers in other countries can go to jail for saying the things that O'Reilly said. At the very least, we should record; he is on the record for having the historical facts wrong. My concern is that if anyone watches O'Reilly's comments turn to this page for accuracy find no mention of him. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:32, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for bringing the discussion to the Talk page. We can all work together much better by talking and forming a consensus, than by making contradictory edits. Now, I agree with you that Wikipedia should record O'Reilly's comments about the Malmedy Massacre. However, I think the right place for that is in the Criticism of Bill O'Reilly article. Would you be willing to post a comment in their Talk page that you think the subject is notable? I repeated that suggestion and was rejected. They need to hear from more people. My second opinion is that any mention of O'Reilly's comments needs a citation to a more reliable source than YouTube. It needs to point to the official transcript of the show, if possible. It should also point to media commentary on the controversy. --Jdlh | Talk 20:36, 19 September 2007 (UTC)

This is the first time I've been involved in a Wikipedia discussion so excuse me if I am not following the appropriate protocol. After watching a YouTube Olbermann segment referencing O'Reilly's comments on Malmedy, I came to Wikipedia to get the real story behind the events. I was very surprised to see that there was absolutely no mention of O'Reilly's blunder in the article. I have come to trust Wikipedia to give accounts of current event developments as they relate to history. Given the magnitude of the error it strikes me as a bit dishonest that the article fails to give it any mention. While the bulk of the article deals with the histiorical context of the massacre, it is very appropriate to have pop culture references to allow readers to see the ways in which public perception of the event has been shaped over the last 60 years. I would hazard a guess that many more people have come to this article in search of information on O'Reilly's mistake than have come in search of the names of movies in which the massacre had a prominent role--movies which nonetheless have been deemed significant enough to merit a place in the article. Also, O'Reilly's article itself currently makes no mention of the controversy, leaving a curious reader no readily available Wikipedia resource from which to learn of the incident. I would suggest that--at minimum--a sentence be added to the pop culture section of the article referencing O'Reilly's blunder, along with a link to a dedicated article in which the incident can be given greater coverage. Bowiem 10:06, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

Bowiem, welcome to Wikipedia. You are doing just fine with protocol. I actually agree with you, that O'Reilly's mistaken statement is notable enough to be covered. I think the correct place for that is in the Criticism of Bill O'Reilly article. But editors there say the topic is not notable. Would you be willing to repeat your comment in the Talk:Criticism of Bill O'Reilly#Malmedy page? I hope that if more editors post there, we can establish a consensus that the topic is worth covering there. Once there's coverage there, I think we have a consensus for a brief reference here. --Jdlh | Talk 17:53, 29 September 2007 (UTC)

I'm pleased to report that the editors at the Criticism of Bill O'Reilly article have now included a section on the Malmedy massacre controversy. I think that's the right place to record that history, not in this article (save for at most a brief reference here). --Jdlh | Talk 05:23, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

So, we've been going back and forth about an O'Reilly mention here. User: put in a mention on June 26. Per this Talk section, I took it out. Then User: put it back in again on June 27. Since I actually prefer to have a brief reference to the controversy here, I improved that reference instead of taking it out a second time. Let's see whether it gets accepted and stays. --Jdlh | Talk 06:29, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks, I just wanted to reference it somewhere in the article, as it did make the left-leaning media critics reference it for a while. That seems worthy of at least mentioning here. (talk) 23:32, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

I don't really have an opinion one way or the other as to whether O'Reilly's comment should be in this article - if I was making the decision, I'd probably lean toward keeping it - but, since it seems like there is no clear consensus, I've tidied up what is currently in there, and added a reference (the Olbermann video). If this debate kicks off again, I suggest somebody make a Request for Comment. Aquamonkey (talk) 15:32, 2 May 2011 (UTC) as a source[edit]

I've been in email conversation with the author of the site , which contains Malmedy Massacre information that many of us are citing in this article. S/he says, "I did not intend my web site to be a "reference source." ... I have not set myself up as an authority on anything. I did not intend my web site to be encyclopedic in nature. I don't put a bibliography at the end of my pages, like a professional researcher would do. In no way have I presented myself or my web site as source material for serious historians." S/he also maintains hir intention to remain anonymous. This is frustrating for me, because they have clearly done a lot of reading of good primary and secondary sources, and with a bit more citation might be a reliable secondary source for us to use in Wikipedia. However, given these comments by the author, I'm inclined to stop relying on as a source, and look for alternate citations to justify what is written in this article. --Jdlh | Talk 18:03, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

An anonymous editor just added a paragraph of an alternative account of the Malmedy Massacre based on and its recounting of a book by a Hans Schmidt of the 1. SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler. I have a feeling this alternative account will be controversial. I no longer think the site is a strong enough reference to rely on for such a controversial account. I sure hope someone reads the Schmidt book and revises the paragraph to cite it and other sources directly. --Jdlh | Talk 18:03, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

To be honest, I share your doubts about the reliability of as sources for the Malmedy massacre and the Malmedy massacre trial. It contains many assertions that are from unknown sources or unverified and also lots of factual or historical inaccuracies.

Many of the sources are German. When American sources are used, they usually support the German side of the story. The description of what happened at the crossroads is based mainly on the German eyewitnesses’ testimonies while no testimony of the survivors (which were however collected in the hours following the massacre and were convergent) is cited.

For instance, I have read this in the first page of the document:

“The reason given by the US Army QM unit which eventually retrieved the bodies was that there was still heavy fighting in the area, which was not true, according to American soldiers (who were these soldiers, no name given) who participated in the fighting in the vicinity of the Massacre”.

According to my information, the front line held by the American was more or less one mile North of the crossroads (see this map so that the US forces had no control over the Baugnez crossroads even if they could hold it under artillery fire (the crossroads is very visible from the highs located North of Malmedy) and maybe prevent other German units to use that road. Moreover, during the whole day of 21 December 1944, Malmedy was attacked on its West side by the 150th panzer brigade led by Otto Skorzeny. And, the 23, 24 and 25 December, Malmedy was mistakenly bombed by the US Air Force, which destroyed and put on fire most of the city and caused the death of 200 civilians. The number of casualties among the US troops defending the city is still unknown today. But on can understand that the US troops were quite occupied with all this until then end of December.

Additionally, one should not forget that some villages in direct “vicinity of the massacre” (like Thirimont or Ligneuville, both less than 2 miles away of the crossroads) were in hand of the Germans or were under German attack (like Waimes).

Just after the previous paragraph, one can read “according to one veteran of the battle, an American Infantry Captain who is now deceased (how convenient it is, he is deceased and we don’t know his name), the alleged massacre was a cover-up to explain why the US Army waited four weeks to collect combat fatalities after they had been notified about the bodies by local Belgian citizens. Another 12 bodies were recovered four months later after all the snow had melted, making a total of 84 victims”.

So, after a few line, the already tries to explain this all was a cover up. This seems however contradictory with the fact that the announcement of the massacre was already know at the HQ of General Hodges on the evening of the 17 December. Weird timing for a “cover-up operation” that one would expect to take place after the corpses had been recovered and buried.

A few lines later, I can also read “There were three eye-witnesses to the event: the owner of the Cafe, Madame Bodarme (her name was in fact Bodarwé and not Bodarme), a 15-year-old boy (who was this unnamed boy?) and a German-born (in that time, many inhabitants of the Malmedy area were German born, since Malmedy had been a German city till 1919) farmer, Henri Le Joly (BTW his name must be written Lejoly and not Le Joly). None of these witnesses were called to testify at the military tribunal in Dachau”.

What the writer forgets is that Madame Bodarwé’s corpse was never found after that day. It is usually though that she died during that action and that her body burned in her cafe when the German set fire to it. As far Henri Lejoly is concerned, according to Charles MacDonald (A Time For Trumpets: The Untold Story of the Battle of the Bulge – 1984), Lejoly actually helped the German to find the American soldiers who tried to escape. One can thus wonder whether he would really have been happy of or even willing to testify at the Dachau trial.

Of course, the document continues with the account of a German soldier who, 60 years after the facts, “for obvious reasons wishes to remain anonymous”.

In substance, according to his story, the massacre was just an ill-fated accident due to the fact that the Americans had tried to attack the Germans and there is no way the Germans intentionally killed disarmed POWs. After the war, he and his comrades “were kept in cells with no lights and when they were taken out of the cells they put sacks over their heads and they were beaten almost daily”. Even worse, according to this witness, “the men in my regiment who had taken part in the battle at the crossroads were tortured very badly; they had their noses broken and their testicles were crushed and they were beaten until they signed confessions that they had massacred the Americans. These men were sentenced to death”.

It’s quite weird, to say the least, to read this kind of account made 60 years after the facts while it is known that the report of the sub-Committee of the US Senate, albeit acknowledging the existence of mock trials, has evidenced 55 years ago that no torture happened.

The fact is that the testimonies of the Germans have changed with the time while those of the American survivors are basically remained unchanged. And contrary to what is written in, during their detention prior to the trial, the German accused were not kept under isolation, but had the opportunity to discuss together, which has probably allowed them to agree on a more or less common version of the facts (report of the sub-Committee of the US Senate).

In conclusion, I don’t think should be disregarded as source, but it cannot be kept as main source for the articles on the Malmedy massacre and the ensuing trial. --Lebob-BE 17:22, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

Given that is a self-published site, that its author professes he does not intend it as a reference site, and that the author has no professional expertise in the subject, I don't believe the site qualifies as a reliable source. I am removing all refs using this source. -- btphelps (talk) (contribs) 07:27, 17 August 2010 (UTC)

"Captor Captive" book as a source[edit]

An anonymous editor posted a message about a possible other source. This message didn't belong in the main article, so User:Tapir Terrific correctly reverted it. However, I don't want the message to be lost, so here it is.

My uncle wrote a book, Captor Captive, that included the Nazis convicted of the Malmedy Massacre and imprisoned at Landsberg.. He was the assistant commandant, a Lt, whose assignment was to carry out the executions. He knew Peiper well and had many conversations with him while in captivity. It was a limited edition written by him and I have scanned it and have it as text that I can attach and send to anyone interested in the history of those imprisoned at Landsberg. He is still alive with a great memory of those events at this writing-July 2006. ----Tom B Atkinson, Nephew of Joseph H Williams, Author. Quote from "Malmedy Massacre" Revision as of 2006-07-10 10:02:55

I did some research: Williams, Joseph H. Captor Captive. Girtman Press. pp. 423pp. ISBN 0961622008.  I see listings on used book services like Abe Books, but not on Per an eBay page describing the book, "After WWII, the author was appointed administrator of the War Crimes prison in Landsberg. Hitler was imprisoned there briefly in the early 1920s. Ironically, Landsberg prison held the top 100 Nazi war criminals, mass murderers from the War. The author had daily contact and conversation with many of the infamous Nazi and S.S. War Criminals while on duty at the prison."

I'm going to send Tom Atkinson an email suggesting ways he can contribute to this article. If you wish to, please do so also. --Jdlh | Talk 03:00, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Joseph McCarthy defending the German[edit]

I am wondering why no mention is made in the trial part of this article that Senator Joseph McCarthy took the defence of the Germans soldiers charged with the accusation of having perpetrated the massacre. He notably stated that the German had be tortured during their interrogation.-- 02:37, 18 November 2006 (UTC)

Good point. Firstly, that discussion belongs in the main article, Malmedy massacre trial, rather than here. Second, it takes someone to do the research, find sources which document McCarthy's actions, and then add that text to the article. Is this something you can do? It would be great if you could. --Jdlh | Talk 08:59, 19 November 2006 (UTC)
I agree that this discussion belongs to the main article (which, BTW, I hadn't yet seen when I have written the above comment). As to sources, I think some of the facts are related on the Wikipedia article on McCarthy. The first time I have read about McCarthy's involvement in the trial was when I read the (French translation of) Charles MacDonald's book (I time for trumpets) on the "battle of the bulge". Anyway, the facts relating to the Malmedy massacre have always interested me as I am been born a few kilometers away from the Baugnez crossroad. I just need time to do this. Moreover, living in Belgium, I am not sure I will get acces to relevant sources. And, last but not least, my written English has many flaws which could make my text difficult to understand. I will perhaps start to change the French version of this article (which is currently very incomplete) and then translate into English my findings on McCarthy's action -- 15:05, 20 November 2006 (UTC)
Thank you for your interest! It is great to have someone with local knowledge and French language ability contribute to this work. Please don't be worried about English language abilities. First, from your posting here your English ability seems quite good. Second, you can just post your rough text in the article, and put a note on the talk page asking people to clean up your wording. I'm sure many people will be happy to help. I had a similar experience -- a few years back there was no German-language "Malmedy Massacre" article, so I translated the English language article into poor German. Many people then improved the German wording of that article, and fixed all my language mistakes. I look forward to your contributions. May I encourage you to create an account, so that I can call you something other than ""? --Jdlh | Talk 19:13, 20 November 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for you kind answer. I just created my account for the EN Wikipedia. I had already one for the FR Wikipedia, but for some unknown reason, it wasn't accepted when I switched to English. I have made some further researches on the Malmedy massacre and the ensuing trial and found some interesting material, but I will need to sort it before going ahead.--Lebob-BE 00:19, 21 November 2006 (UTC)

"Macht alle kaputt."[edit]

I have outcommented this:
That testified statement does not sound German at all (by no means is there such phrase) but rather how Americans figure how Germans would speak.

"kaputt machen" (lierally: to actively break sth. physically) is a legit German derogatory colloquialism for "to kill" or "to die" and was so at the time of WW2 (e.g. in Remarque, Im Westen nichts Neues, published 1929: "Wir haben Humor, weil wir sonst kaputt gehen." - note that the passive form "kaputt gehen" is ambiguous as regards to physical death vs. mental breakdown). Thus, the phrase in question may very well indeed have been spoken by a German at that time and place. In fact, any command to kill the prisoners, given by somebody on the passing column, would have been more of a throwaway remark than a well-versed and formal command, and there are basically 2 ways to say such a thing in German, namely "macht sie/alle fertig" or "macht sie/alle kaputt". The former is more common, but the latter explicitly means "kill them" whereas "macht sie fertig" could also mean "brutalize but don't kill". A close English approximation would be "toast 'em all" except without the notion of using fire/explosives as means of destruction implied by "toast". "Wreck 'em all" would be a very close approximation of "macht alle fertig", including the ambiguity.

The Germanism "kaput(t)" denotes a physically broken piece of equipment rather than a dead person, thus it is actually quite unlikely that somebody without intimate knowledge of German would use such a term. Person with basic knowledge of German could be rather expected to give "macht sie/alle tot" for example, which is formally correct, but awkward and unusual. Dysmorodrepanis 16:46, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Charles Durning[edit]

The actor Charles Durning may have served well in WWII, also said to have received a Silver Star as a 17-year old private (which is hard to verify without knowing his unit, etc.)but he was not involved whatsoever at the Baugnez crossroads, not a surviving escapee, etc. The source cited is an article on the film The Longest Day on a vets job website and the citation seems to be one of those "I heard that..." and unverifiable, but the event was propagandized heavily at the time with much untruth then and subsequently. However, every surrendering POW who went on to POW camp, those who succeeded in their escape attempt, those whose bodies were recovered at various times in various places etc. have all been identified. I would suggest Gen. Michael Reynolds as the most reliable to date. And Durning was not there.

I have removed the story of the Malmedy massacre because no reliable source, i.e. authors who have written about this incident, mentions Durning as one of the survivors. The names of the survivors are very well known. The lists of the survivors can be found in most of the the recent books thant contain accurate information about this massacre. I have recently read "Jens Westemeier, Joachim Peiper, a biography of Himmler’s SS Commander, 2007, Schiffer Military History", that contains an appendix with all these names and Durning is nowhere to be found in this list. And the same goes for others books containing information on the Malmedy massacre. --Lebob-BE (talk) 11:30, 15 August 2008 (UTC)
There is a clear reference to Charles Durning’s presence at the Malmedy massacre, cited by the French consul during the presentation of the French Legion of Honor to Durning in April 2008. Within that reference there is corroborating evidence in Durning’s own account from that presentation as to how he came to be at Malmedy.
I can see nothing in General Michael Reynolds essay on Malmedy that would, in any way, suggest that Durning could not have been at the Baugnez crossroads. Durning’s account says he was captured the day before. Reynolds quite clearly states that KGr. Peiper arrived with prisoners.
However, the key words to be taken from Reynolds essay lie right at the start in which he states that, of the plethora of books and articles that followed Malmedy (which seem to provide the basis on which Durning’s involvement is being rejected on the pages), “few of these accounts are based on fact, and most are embellished and inaccurate.”
I believe both of the above posts to be Argument from ignorance – or, to put it another way, falling into the well-worn fallacy that absence of evidence can also be taken as evidence of absence. It can’t.
Unless anyone can provide compelling evidence to the contrary, the French Consulate’s reference to Durning’s involvement at Malmedy should now be viewed as definitive.
I do not propose that his involvement is cited in these pages on Malmedy – there were many others there that day – but I do believe that reference to this should be made on Durning’s own page. David T Tokyo (talk) 11:32, 29 January 2009 (UTC)

A cover-up?[edit]

As far as Scrapbook Pages regarding cover-up, prevalent theories well known at the time was that the Army PR and US press pointed up what may or may not have happened at the Baugnez crossroads at Eisenhower's direction to discourage surrendering, which was prevalent, and to take away attention from the fact that the US Air Force did in fact bomb US forces at Malmedy for three days in a row, despite all efforts by officer in command David Pergrin to stop them (pilots/navigator 'error'). And to divert attention that most Belgian civilian casualties were from US shelling ad bombing. But not from the US Army executing Skorzeny's men on Christmas morning, which event was delayed until the newsreel cameras could get there. Come on, foks, get real. Finally, I checked the Dachau Scrapbook citation re the 15-year old boy (named Pfeiffer) and Belgian farmer Henri Lejoly, both of whom had been heavily cited by the US at the time as 'eyewitnesses to the/a massacre' only a US Bulge researcher then found out in 1994 that although these 'eyewitnesses' plus one Mme. Bodarwe, who seems to have died later or earlier, are shown and 'interviewed' and cited in the US Signal Corps on the scene Jan 16, 1945 and in their commemoration anniversary photo display, the military tribunal investigators in 1945-46 omitted any record of interviewing these so-called eyewitnesses, did not obtain any affidavits from them of record, nor call them as witnesses. The existence of the 15-year-old is still open to question since there is no record, but Lejoly, it turns out, is now said to have 'betrayed' the hiding US troops to the Germans. 04:36, 17 January 2007 (UTC)

What a surprise to read a discussion on what happened at Baugnez crossroads started by the same IP nr. who already came on the Stavelot talk page ( put in doubt the reality of the massacre of 100 Belgian civilians who, instead, were "shelled by the US artillery".
Because it is of course impossible that your "honorable" officers of the Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler could have perpetrated these massacres or even ordered them.
Let’s come back again to what you wrote.
  • “Discourage surrending that was prevalent at the time”: It’s the first time I hear this theory. There have been surrenders in the first days of the Battle of the Bulge, as many US units have been attacked completely by surprise, just as the unfortunate victims at Baugnez were. I however doubt that what may or may not have happened at Malmedy (BTW the facts are well documented and there is no doubt that a massacre actually occurred) has been used by Eisenhower in order to prevent surrenders. Even if, as a matter of facts, I can imagine that US soldiers aware of the massacre were maybe more reluctant to surrender. However, since you are so affirmative on your theory of “prevalent theories well known at the time”, would you please be so kind to provide us with referenced sources.
  • “cover-up for mistaken bombings of Malmedy”: That must be the funniest thing I have ever heard about the Malmedy massacre. So, the massacre happened on December 17, 1944 and the first testimonies of the survivors were made in the late afternoon of the same day to Colonel David E. Pergrin who was leading the troops in charge of the defense of Malmedy. The same day, Pergrin transmitted his report on these facts to the HQ of the 1st US Army (General Courtney Hodges) in Spa. The SHAEF was informed by Hodges that day or in the early morning of the 18 December. Yet by the late evening of the 17th the rumor that the enemy was killing prisoners had reached as far as the forward American divisions (Hugh M. Cole, THE ARDENNES: BATTLE OF THE BULGE, p. 264, [5]). Furthermore, on December 21, Malmedy had been attacked on its west side by the 150th Panzerbrigade, led by Otto Skorzeny. The fight lasted almost the whole day, but at the end the Germans were repelled. The first mistaken air strike of Malmedy by bombers belonging to the 9th USAF happened on 23 December 1944 at 3.26 p.m. (i.e. six days after the massacre at the Baugnez crossroads occurred). Two other mistaken bombings occurred on 24 and 25 December killing about 200 civilians and an unknown number of US soldiers. A substantial part of the small city was leveled to the ground. So if we must swallow your theory, the US Army has created on December 17, 1944 a false report (with false testimonies of course) regarding a massacre (that did in fact not happen at all) for covering up mistaken bombings of Malmedy that in fact happened six days later. This looks weird, to say the last.
  • “and to divert attention that most Belgian civilian casualties were from US shelling ad bombing”: any person who has little knowledge of the Battle of the Bulge knows that. In my own village of origin, 15 people were killed and 27 others wounded by an US artillery fire in December 1944. However still today most of the people in this village are convinced that the primarily fault is in the hands of the German officer who ordered the population to evacuate the village at daylight through a road that was under sight of the US troops, who have mistakenly taken the civilian for a German troop. This was confirmed a few days later by another German officer who, after having heard the report, told the priest of the village: “der Offizier der dieses Befehl gegeben hat ist ein Nashorn!” (i.e. the officer who issued that order is a rhinoceros), meaning by this said officer had been stupid (or incompétent). In fact, as far I know, there is little resentment in the Ardennes against the US Army, although they might be viewed as responsible for numerous civilian casualties. There is still resentment against the German for the crimes they have perpetrated against civilians in numerous places during the Battle of the Bulge.
  • The witnesses: I wonder how you can have the name of the 15 years old witness if, according to your own words, “the existence of the 15-year-old is still open to question”. As far Lejoly is concerned, the fact that he betrayed the hiding US troops to the Germans is reported by Charles Mc Donald in his book. After all, this is plausible, as the Malmedy area had been regarded as German territory between 1940 and 1944. And there were still people who felt more sympathy for Germany than for Belgium or the USA, even if they were not a majority. With respect to Mrs. Bodarwé, it’s a well known fact that she was killed in her café during the facts. In January 1945, some heavily burned bones were found in the café (which had been burned by the German). These bones are most probably those of Mrs. Bodarwé.
As I said in my answer on the Stavelot talk page, the post mortem examinations made in January 1945 on the victims show beyond any reasonable doubt that a massacre occured. And there are testimonies that German SS (i.e. nazi) officers were present when this happened.
Before trying to alter or hide the facts, please provide us with reliable sources and not the disinformation one can find in most of the denialist sources. You should try to find a job with FoxNews. I am pretty sure Bill O'Reilly would greatly appreciate your help. --Lebob-BE 11:13, 17 January 2007 (UTC)
Just as a note to support how locals rarely blame the Americans for bombings or shellings of May, September or December 1944 (the three main phases of bombardment in this area). A number of my relatives were killed when their house was accidentally hit (I believe in September rather then December). My uncle likewise barely escaped getting killed by a strafing US fighter bomber... You certainly wouldn't find him accusing the Americans of any wrongdoings. In short, most among the population knew very well that these killings primarily occurred due to the German aggression of 1940. As a side note, my grand-father was actually a collaborator, yet I doubt he'd have blamed the Americans if my uncle had been killed that day.--Caranorn 13:06, 17 January 2007 (UTC)


I am nominating this article to be checked for neutrality. It seems to lean on Allied viewpoints rather than remain objective. --Zebro 18:19, 9 May 2007 (UTC)

New source[edit]

While I am still nominating the article, I have found new material. I quote directly:

"During the Ardennes Offensive in late 1944 the Waffen-SS again committed an atrocity. A number of American prisoners had been assembled at the Baugnez crossroads, near Malmédy, as spearhead units of 1 SS Panzer Corps streamed past. They were guarded by two tanks and their crews. German sources claim that only some 20 prisoners were involved, Belgian witnesses say about 35, and the Americans claim over 120. Whatever the numbers involved, a crewman in tank number 731, a Romanian Volksdeutsche named Georg Fleps, fired his automatic pistol into the mass of prisoners. As they scattered the other Germans opened fire and most of the prisoners were killed. This was clearly a crime for which the perpetrators would have to be brought to justice. The controversy arose over the way in which the investigations were handled. The Americans sought to show that this massacre was the result of a German policy decision not to take prisoners. The order was said to have emanated from SS-Oberstgruppenführer Josef 'Sepp' Dietrich."

This quote is taken directly from 'Waffen-SS - An Unpublished Record' (Published 1999) by Christopher Ailsby, an 'expert on the Waffen SS, the SS in general, and the military awards of the Third Reich.' —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Zebro (talkcontribs) 04:45, 10 May 2007 (UTC).

You new source obviously forgets that this massacre has not been the only one perpetrated by Peiper's men. On 17, 18 and 19 December, no less than 300 American POWs would have been killed in cold blood. And I don't even speak about the 100 Belgian civilians killed in the area of Stavelot What the testimonies of the German sources forget to explain is how it is possible that with only 20 men involved, one would find more than 80 bodies on the field. As to the Belgian witnesses, who were these witnesses. Most records speak only of two Belgian witnesses (a Madame Bodarwé who was killed the same day and a Henri Lejoly who, according Charles McDonald relating the testimonies of American survivors, helped the Germans to find the Americans who tried to escape). Other reports also speak of a 15 y.o. young boy, but are unable to provide a name. I wonder whether there could have been other Belgian witnesses. By the way, the figure of more or less 120 men gathered in the pasture is usually the one given by the American survivors whose testimonies are almost all the same, contrary to the ones of the German who changed almost every year since 1944. --Lebob-BE 10:09, 10 May 2007 (UTC)
I have now expanded this article and, completed the sources and added new ones. As a consequence, I have also removed the POV tag. --Lebob-BE 14:30, 10 May 2007 (UTC)
No, that's just the one atrocity he mentioned in that part. I am not arguing whether or not Kampfgruppe Peiper committed the atrocities - they did - but that there are two sides to every story, and the article didn't seem to take that into account. --Zebro 08:22, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
In fact, I lack of reliable German sources that could be used to add more of the German point of view to the article. On the German Wikipedia ([6]), they speak about an investigation that would have been ordered by von Runstedt on the request of the USA, but they do not provides sources that confirm this story. But if you have reliable sources which provide the German point of view (and I have no reason to believe that Ailsby is not a reliable source), do not hesitate to add or to change things if you find it appropriate. Just be aware that because the big turmoil that surrounded the aftermath of the Malmedy massacre trial it's sometime difficult to know whether what you read is a reliable study of the case of mere propoganda or POV pushing. :) --Lebob-BE 20:21, 11 May 2007 (UTC)

Proposal to rename "Dachau International Military Tribunal" article[edit]

There is a proposal to rename the article Dachau International Military Tribunal to be Dachau Military Tribunal, deleting "International". Please review and give your opinion at the move proposal on that Talk page. --Jdlh | Talk 18:46, 16 May 2007 (UTC)

Final name was Dachau Trials. Removed wikilinks to old names. --Jdlh | Talk 19:56, 19 May 2007 (UTC)

"in cold blood"[edit]

Since there our views appear to differ, here goes.

  • The massacre was a war crime because POWs were killed. That they were killed "in cold blood" is a value expression that is irrelevant to anything. "In cold blood" is defined as "Deliberately; not in the excitement of passion or of battle.", which I highly doubt was the case during the Ardenner offensive.
  • The other sentence states that "Peiper’s men were the perpetrators of the massacre of 100 Belgian civilians", to emphasize that many women and children were amongst them insinuates that they are more important civilians than men, a view based on good ol' macho culture.

--SaberExcalibur! 07:57, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

First of all I would like to stress that this article is clearly documented and refers to numerous reliable sources and does only refer to facts that have been related by numerous authors. Furthermore these fact have also beenunder the scrutinty of an US military Court in 1946.

  • I can hardly see why "cold blood" should be a value expression. It indeed means "deliberately" and "not in the excitement of passion or of battle" and perfectly fits to what happened in Honsfeld. If you would ahve read among others Charles Mcdonald book (which can be found within the sources of this article), you would know that after the (short, if any) battle in Honsfeld came to an end, the US POWs were forced to walk along the road to the rear German positions while the German vehicles continued their. Some of the US soldiers have related how the drivers of some of these vehicles tried to crush them with thier car. Other German fired at the US POWs column from the vehicles, killings several men. This was clearly made deliberately and not at all in the excitement of passion or battle. I therefore stick to the use of the words "in colds blood" whic perfectly reflect what happened in Honsfeld (and in other places by the way).
  • On the second point, there is no emphasis at all. It is merely a fact that is easily verifiable. There were also women and (very) young children among the civilian killed by Peiper's men. I do not understand what could disturb you with what is an historical proven fact. --Lebob-BE 16:26, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

Should Peiper be held accountable?[edit]

My view is that Peiper can not be responsible for what happened, not 100% anyway. Firstly, he was 12 kilometres away from the Baugnez croosroads at the time. Also there is evidence that when a Lieutenant told Peiper what had happened, "he looked up in complete surprise and shock" (source:'Jochen Peiper' by Charles Whiting). If people disagree with what I say could we perhaps at least state that there is some doubt and confusion regarding his 'participation' in this atrocity? I could come up with a sub-paragraph should it be deemed acceptable. Also I can provide more evidence if what I have already said is not enough. --User:fogle45 15:18, )03 March 2008 (UTC)

This is a discussion page for improving the article. Having said that, generally a commander is responsible for everything his unit does or fails to do. Whether he knew about it or not is his problem. Regards, DMorpheus (talk) 16:29, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

Hmm, well to me, the article reads as though he personally lead the massacre, as though he was present. How about saying that although he was in charge of the division, he was not present, and only took responsibility not only due to his status of commander, but also because he was willing to be the scapegoat for his soldiers (this sounds bold but one could alter it). This is also something that is held to be true. Fogle45 (talk) 18:06, 3 March 2008 (UTC)

I'm in favour of improving the article. However, Wikipedia has policies. One is Wikipedia:Verifiability: "Material challenged or likely to be challenged, and all quotations, must be attributed to a reliable, published source." Do you have a reliable source which you can cite for the claims that: Peiper was not present at the massacre, Peiper's surprise and shock, that there is doubt and confusion about his participation? The claim needn't be true, just claimed by some reliable source; and preferably with a page number reference and using one of the Wikipedia:Citation templates. If you have that, then write it with a Wikipedia:Neutral point of view and stick it in. If you want help with wording, then please feel free to put a draft on this Talk page. I, and perhaps some others, will be glad to give you advice. Welcome to Wikipedia, Fogle45. --Jdlh | Talk 20:20, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
It must be said though that even if Peiper wasn't present, he is still responsible, as commanders always are. And, Fogle45, it is not a question of his "willingness" to be a "scapegoat" for his troops. It's a matter of military custom and international law. The commander needn't be present or even aware of a crime such as this for him to be held responsible. This is one of the basics of discipline. Regards,DMorpheus (talk) 20:26, 3 March 2008 (UTC)
I have slightly amended the article in order to reflect the fact that Peiper was indeed not present at the crossroads when the massacre happened. But it is not true to say he was 12 km away from the crossroads when the PoWs where killed. He was most likely in Ligneuville which is only 4 km away from the crossroads. I have also read at least once (in Charles MacDonald's book) that he was stunned where he heard for the first time of the massacre. However, I can't remember whether MacDonalds reports what a Lieutenant said or what Peiper said. Since I do no longer have that book at my disposal (furthermore, I had the French translation of that book) I cannot tell at which page one can find this point. Now one can still discuss on the responsibility of Peipern in this massacre. The fact that he wanted to act as scapegoat has often be put forward by Peiper himself and/or his men. Untill today, it is still not possible to determine whether the Malmedy massacre results from a direct order given by Peiper or not. However, one must not lose of sight that the Malmedy massacre is not the only one that happened on the road followed by the Kampfgruppe Peiper (see the table in the article). What is actually remarkable is that all these massacres (of American PoWs and Belgian civililans) happened in areas controlled (at least for a period of time) by troops belonging to the Kampfgruppe Peiper and precisely while the Kampfgruppe was controling these areas. This conjuction of place and time makes the Kampfgruppe Peiper the first and, to tell the truth, the only suspect for these massacres (including the Malmedy massacre). The Kampfgruppe Peiper is the only comabatant German unit that may by "credited" with such systematic crimes of war during the Battle of the Bulge. Other Belgian civilians have been killed by German forces during this battle, but this has been mostly done by people of the Sicherheitsdienst acting on the rears of the German troops. No other systematics murder of Americans PoWs have been reported during this battle. In fact, it is as if the Kampfgruppe Peiper would have "imported" (or, at least, applied) on the Westfront behaviors that are known for having been common practice for the German units (and in particular Waffen SS units) on the Eastfront. It is hard to believe this is a mere coincidence. By the way, I also stress that Peiper has not been sentenced by the Dachau military tribunal for the Malmedy massacre[7], since the judges seem to have accepted he was not there when the massacre occurred, but for having transmitted to the units under his command orders that instructed to kill PoWs and, at several occasions having ordered the killing of PoWs[8]. As stated before by DMorpheus, Peiper was the commander and, for this reason, he obviously bears the responsibility for what the troops under his cammand have done. As the change I have made to the article shows it, I have no problem to admit that Peiper was not present at the Baugnez crossroads when the massacre happened. But this does not mean he has absolutely no responsibility in this massacre. --Lebob-BE (talk) 18:14, 4 March 2008 (UTC)
Apparently, the U.S. Army doesn't agree that "a commander is responsible for everything his unit does or fails to do" since they acquitted Captain Medina in the My Lai massacre after convicting Lt. Calley. Also, Medina was only commanding a company with just over 100 men while Peiper's command involved around 5,000 soldiers. If we follow the line of reasoning that the commander is always responsible, Rundstedt would have been tried for Oradour-sur-Glane and he certainly wasn't.
The "Lieutenant" that is being mentioned is actually a Major Josef Diefenthal who commanded a battalion of panzergrenadiers in Peiper's group. He was the officer that first informed Peiper that there were a "lot of dead Amis at the crossroads." The major reason given by Germans for just Peiper's men to be linked to POWs being shot is because they made a significant penetration into the Allied front and unlike Germany's 5th Army didn't have sufficient resources to handle prisoners. If the 2nd & 12th SS Divisions had made a significant penetration instead of being engaged in a static bloody scrimmage, I'm sure there would be other reports of POWs being shot. When Lebob-BE writes that Kampgruppe Peiper "'imported' (or, at least, applied) on the Westfront behaviors that are known for having been common practice for the German units (and in particular Waffen SS units) on the Eastfront" he's leaving out that the Red Army was every bit the equal of even Waffwen SS troops for commiting atrocities. And for raping women, the frequently intoxicated Russian soldiers surpass any other major army of WWII. As for this article's POV, there isn't any mention of the fact that it was all but official Allied policy to not take prisoners on D-Day. It states numerous times that civilians were murdered in various Belgium towns but never are the snipers of the Belgian Underground mentioned.
I am deleting the sentence suggesting Peiper should have advanced north from Büllingen towards the Elsenborn Ridge so he could entrap the 2nd and 99th Divisions. It's absurd that he would violate orders to this degree and given that those two divisions are several times his group's size, they could have fought their way out of any encirclement.TL36 (talk) 05:07, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

Similar text between this article and[edit]

I see a great similarity betwen the text of the Malmedy massacre article, and the series of web pages on the Battle of the Bulge at . The pages don't cite Wikipedia as a source. Thus it's not immediately clear to me if we copied from them or they copied from us. It does look like someone copied from someone. I'm noting it here so that it can be investigated by whoever wants to take it up. Anybody have insights? --Jdlh | Talk 01:36, 10 March 2008 (UTC)

I am pretty sure he copied from wikipedia. Notice how the reference numbers are not hyperlinks. Also, I have seen this article grow over the past couple of years and most of the content didn't suddenly appear in one edit. --rogerd (talk) 02:23, 10 March 2008 (UTC)
In fact most of the articles on the Malmedy massacre and on the Malmedy massacre trial are translations of the articles on the same topic on Wikipedia (fr). Since I am a native French speaker, I wrote the French article first (in November 2006) and afterwards, I posted an English translation in January 2007. When the French version has been proposed as featured article in April 2007, new changes have been made to the (fr) version of the article, that have also been translated into the (en) version in May 2007. Since then, both articles have their own life. However, there is no doubt that the Webpages on the Battle of the Bulge have copied Wikiepdia material, at least as far the Malmedy massacre story is concerned. Furthermore I think it would be strange that a site that seems primarily US focused finds a reference book written in French (in fact published in Belgium) and that is almost confidential like this one: Ardennes 1944-1945, Guide du champ de bataille, Émile Engels, histoire, Ed. Racine, Bruxelles, 1994 --Lebob-BE (talk) 09:12, 10 March 2008 (UTC)
I've sent an email to the administrator address at to get their response. It sounds like a good response would be for them to put in a link to the Wikipedia articles from which they re-used content, and then everything would be clear and in line with license terms. --Jdlh | Talk 23:05, 10 March 2008 (UTC)

Apart from the fact Wikpeadia articles are open source and allowed to be used in this manner without even a citation of the source. The only thing required is that the copied material is itself free documentation.Syferus (talk) 00:07, 11 September 2008 (UTC)

If copied from Wikipedia, then legally they have to do it under the WP:GFDL. The terms include: "release the Modified Version under precisely this License", i.e. those pages on would have to be under GFDL too; crediting the Wikipedia and/or its authors, etc. I was more worried about the possibility that we at Wikipedia copied from him. Apparently we didn't. In any case, I think it's moot; I don't see any pages under any more. I think we can close this issue. --Jdlh | Talk 14:09, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Durning again[edit]

I have once more removed a reference to the possible presence of Charles Durning at Baugnez and the fact that he would be a survivor of the massacre. This has be widely discussed here. Since there is no reliable source (i.e written by an historian) that lists Durning among the survivors and that the names of the survivors has be quoted in numerous books, I think thare are serious doubts about the truthfulness of this story (and this does not diminish Durning's merits for what he has done during WW2) and that one should therefore not mention this in this article unless much more reliable sources are put forward. --Lebob-BE (talk) 11:50, 7 April 2010 (UTC)

I don't think it's appropriate to question the "truthfulness" of anyone's statement here. However, Durning's statement - and that of the French Consulate, is obviously at odds with the Malmedy Historians. Despite the fact I don't believe either side has yet presented unimpeachable proof that they are 100% correct, it's obvious that including a reference to Durning being at Malmedy just stirs up trouble here on Wikipdeia. However, don't take that mean that he wasn't - the honest truth is that we don't know. I, for one, hope this issue will one day be solved and I think it will be, although not in Durning's lifetime. David T Tokyo (talk) 16:11, 7 April 2010 (UTC)
Well, I might have been a little bit too harsh in my previous comment. Overall I agree with your comment above. There is no definite proof for the presence or the absence of Durning at Baugnez and we îndeed don't know. I also assume that we will once get an final answer to this question. --Lebob-BE (talk) 12:25, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

Not a deliberate massacre, but a rather horrible unfolding of events[edit]

Several sources (and also some research done by some Belgian writer who collected witness statements from survivors on both sides) currently point out that it might not be a massacre such as the allied propaganda of the time tried to make out of it. In this case sources state no orders were given and the small force of German guards reacted (probably out of fear) in a very bad way. Sources state there was movement of Americans trying to escape at the back, which prompted some shooting, causing panic which in the end turned the whole situation into an all out shooting of the prisoners. Also it is worth to note than it was a generally accepted practice in the German army to "execute" or put out of their misery seriously wounded individuals (also Germans). Which explains why a number of prisoners would have been shot from close range. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:31, 23 June 2010 (UTC)

Interesting. Do you hold similar views about the Holocaust? Dlabtot (talk) 02:18, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
That's an outrageous comment and completely uncalled for, Diabtot - shame on you. Ever since it occurred historians have been questioning precisely what happened at the Baugnez crossroads - and they will continue to do so. The article itself quite clearly states that there no clear evidence as to what happened, and what precipitated it all. David T Tokyo (talk) 10:15, 24 June 2010 (UTC) defends the 'mercy killing' of prisoners - who in this case were unwounded - and it's my comment that is outrageous. OK. Dlabtot (talk) 12:22, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
What are you talking about? Mercy killings of unwounded prisoners? Nowhere in his comments does he come even close to saying that. You've laid into someone with an outrageous comment for something that hasn't even been said. And now you're trying to defend it. David T Tokyo (talk) 13:22, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
I disagree with your characterizations of both my comments and the comment to which I responded. Anyway, it's all off-topic, anyway. I don't see anything in this section related to a discussion of how to improve this article. Do you? Dlabtot (talk) 13:33, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
You're unbelievable. You question someone about their views on the Holocaust and now that you've been challenged on it you think it's time to start talking about what is and what is not off-topic. Exactly what was relevant about your response?David T Tokyo (talk) 15:07, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
As I've said I see nothing at all relevant in this section. That includes my comments as well as the comical and misguided outrage you've directed towards me. Dlabtot (talk) 16:50, 24 June 2010 (UTC)
This Belgian writer the poster refers to is probably Gerd Cuppens. Cuppens wrote an apologist work (Was wirklich geschah: Malmedy-Baugnez 17. Dezember 1944) in the 1980s which distorted the facts and was aimed an exonerating the Germans. The work is not worthy of a historian and should be ignored. A far more objective work about this event is the recent book by Danny S. Parker -- fdewaele, 15 February 2013.

Similar Massacre[edit]

See link {reference only} at [1] —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:48, 5 August 2010 (UTC)


Allied Massacress[edit]

I've seen evidence that Peiper was aware of U.S. and canadian massacres of German soldiers, some sources on what Peiper knew of this should be dug up and included in the initial context section.

It looks as if the Canadians and Americans started killing prisoners as early as on the beaches in Normandy.[9] This may have led to some retaliatory incidents.--Stor stark7 Speak 20:29, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Your second sentance seems complete and utter speculation; why would someone wait half a year to get payback? Considering the 1st SS arrived during the first month of the battle of Normandy, at a time when the 12th SS were murdering POWs, it would seem a lot more logical for this type of massacre to have taken place when they "had the chance". Furthermore if your speculation is correct and Peiper wanted revenge on criminal acts commited agaisnt his forces, surely this type of event would have taken place against the people they had fought in Normandy i.e. Anglo-Canadian forces not the Americans. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:08, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Perhaps a good place to start would be to look who was among the "allies" to start with. Many of the comments here assume a "Western" association of democracies that fought the Nazis and the Fascists. The truth is more complicated. The allies included the Communist Soviet Union and the Uber-Nationalist KMT Chinese. On the other hand, the Axis included Finland which rated as a democracy. Needless to say that massacres galore were committed by the Soviet and Nationalist Chinese military forces -- and yes, by some of the democracies, especially by the Free French who seemed to have a particular penchant for extra-judicial executions. The problem lies here in sacred history -- the allies have to be portrayed as all-good, and their opponents as all-evil. For all we know this event may have well been a retaliatory massacre, but the subject as been overshadowed by the Holocaust. It makes the very real lack of moral clarity absurd. As a way out of this dilemma, it is best to think of WWII as a struggle between evil -- Nazi Germany -- and frail, flawed humanity (represented by the all the allies), which despite its shortcomings still retained a spark of good. To return to the discussion here, a section should be added talking about the dispute on the nature of the massacre, removing such sections is a dis-service. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:23, 8 November 2011 (UTC)

When sources contain wrong facts...[edit]

As it is very obviously the case for Williamson's book, the question is to know whether it should be used or not, at least in the introduction. Actually none of the accused has been executed for the Malmedy massacre. This claim is completely false as explained here, where no source used mentions any execution after the Dachau Trial. Beside Williamson there is only one source that evokes the execution of persons declared guilty at the end of the trial: the French fascist and holocaust denialist Maurice Bardèche. Both are however unable to name the persons who have allegedly been hanged and none of the other men who were imprisoned after the trial has never claimed that executions took place. When a source misquotes such basic and well know facts I have some doubts about its reliability. And this is not an “opinion” about what fact were wrong.

I could also find very quickly half a dozen of books that claim that the Holocaust did not happen and yet nobody would accept them as sources for this article. Because the other users have the opinion that the facts quoted in said sources are wrong? Or because they know it as they based themselves on more reliable sources?

The second point is that all what I have removed has more to do with de Dachau trial, which has its devoted article, i.e. Malmedy massacre trial. I believe that considerations about the trial should be place there and not in the article about the massacre. And there is at least one user who shares, at least partially, my views on this.

As a consequence I will remove once more the changes made by Dlabtot, even this is sourced text, because 1) some of the facts are proven wrong and 2) this content belongs to another article. --Lebob-BE (talk) 16:21, 21 January 2011 (UTC)

In popular culture[edit]

Saints and Soldiers ? (2003) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:18, 16 September 2011 (UTC)


"A young Senator from Wisconsin, Joseph McCarthy (who was Irish-American but, represented a heavily German-American ethnic constituency)"
I find the sentence in brackets ill-come. First of all, it seems to imply that McCarthy took their defense because of his german origin, which is not proven at all and unlikely; moreover, the reference link doesn't mention his German-American ethnic constituency at all. jellko51 (talk) 18:38, 1 April 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)

Revision Undone of "Apparently unknown to him ..."[edit]

My revision was undone with the only comment being "Nor reason to remove sourced material." This sentence, "Apparently unknown to him, had he advanced north from Büllingen towards Elsenborn, he could have flanked and trapped the 2nd and the 99th Infantry Divisions with possibly a vastly different outcome," was the reason for my revision. The Hugh Cole quote from the 99th Division's Commander Major General Lauer's 1951 book that "the enemy had the key to success within his hands, but did not know it," isn't referencing Peiper but German leadership well above him (See Lauer's book "Battle Babies: The Story of the 99th Infantry Division in World War II"). I have already expounded on my reasons for the sentence's deletion at your talk page User talk:Lebob.TL36 (talk) 22:07, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

Japanese Objections?[edit]

Article states: "Critics of the post-war trials of Japanese military personnel have cited the release of these war criminals as an example of the racism that characterized the difference in treatment. Japanese military personnel who were convicted of killing prisoners as a matter of policy were executed per international law and custom."

There is no citation perhaps because this claim is not supported. Not only were many more POWs executed, tortured, starved, and otherwise mistreated by the Japanese (the Holocaust was not for POWs), but in 1954 and 1955 Japanese war criminals still imprisoned were released. They were released for the same reason given here for the release of the German war criminals around the same time--the allies were concerned about keeping Japan out of Communist hands.

See for example Arnold C. Brackman, The Other Nuremberg: The Untold Story of the Tokyo War Crimes Trials, NY: Wm. Morrow, 1987. Print. and George Weller. First into Nagasaki: The Censored Eyewitness Dispatches on Post-Atomic Japan and its Prisoners of War. Ed. Anthony Weller. New York: Crown, 2006. Print. Weller states: “Statistically, it was seven times healthier to be a POW under the Nazis than under the Japanese.” (287, 288)

Documents show that the Japanese had intended to kill all their POWs eventually. The atom bomb probably saved that from happeining. See for example John Wukovits. Pacific Alamo: The Battle for Wake Island. New York: New American Library, 2003. Print. (pages 240-250). Wukovits quotes the general order concerning POWs held by the Japanese: “In any case it is the aim not to allow the escape of a single one, to annihilate them all, and not to leave any traces.” (p. 242) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jb811 (talkcontribs) 00:43, 4 January 2013 (UTC)

Danny S. Parker's 2012 book about the Malmedy massacre[edit]

In 2012 a new book about the Malmedy massacre was published: Danny S. Parker, Fatal Crossroads; The Untold Story of the Malmédy Massacre at the Battle of the Bulge, ISBN-10: 0306811936.

The book is centered at how the American column got entangled with Peiper's Kampfgruppe and the massacre itself. It doesn't handle the topic of the trial. Parker spent years researching archives, military court documents, walking the fields and farm paths at Baugnez, and interviewing surviving American and German soldiers as well as Belgian locals. Parker's level of detail is astonishing, including the location of soldiers when they were captured, where they were shot, and for the few that escaped, their routes to freedom. Similar, he has been able to identify and map where the SS troops were positioned when ordered to kill the American prisoners. This is probably the most definitive work about the topic. -- fdewaele, 15 February 2013.

Inclusion of Wereth Massacre[edit]

Should the Wereth Massacre be included in the list of later massacres? I was going to add it but figured I should ask here to be sure first.Capt Jim (talk) 19:45, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

I am not really sure. Although this massacre has been perpetrated by troops belonging to 1st SS Pz Division I have the feeling it happened in slightly different context. It is also difficult to included it in the list of later massacres at it might have happened more or less at the same time than the Malmedy massacre or even at little bit earlier. --Lebob (talk) 12:07, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

HUGELY biased article[edit]

Whoever wrote this is a real putz. The SS were not the people who took the soldiers captive in the first place, when they were marched away they still had their fire-arms and still had their uniforms on. To say there was no reason for why they shot them then is a massive lie. Yes, there was an organizational error on the German part here, but it was not cruelty, merely the fog of war that caused the pows to be killed. EDIT: and if you don't believe me watch any documentary on the history channel about it, there are books and scholarly sources that dispute the idea the "Malmedy Massacre" was done deliberately.--InterPersonalAutomaton (talk) 05:38, 15 June 2015 (UTC)

Rather to refer to History Channel, which has displayed many controversial material, provide us with references to "scholarly sources" that dispute the idea the massacre was done deliberately. And also avoid using books published by Waffen-SS apologists, as they have not much value. --Lebob (talk) 09:46, 15 June 2015 (UTC)

Here's a claim by David Irving (expert on the third reich. historian who has accessed numerous documents from the third reich) that says what I have claimed [10]--InterPersonalAutomaton (talk) 09:18, 16 June 2015 (UTC)

Irving isn't an honest source. He's a known Nazi apologist, has been discredited as an historian for having deliberately misrepresented and manipulated historical evidence, and he has been sentenced by courts for denying the holocaust. -- fdewaele, 16 June 2015, 16:33.
Okay well this book was published before his trial and him being "discredited". Doesn't that make it a reliable source? It's not the book he was sued for, that was "Hitler's war", published after the book being reviewed. Just to make it clear I'm not trying to whitewash the Nazis or anything and say they didn't commit war crimes, obviously they did. I am just trying to make sure both sides of an academic issue are presented.--InterPersonalAutomaton (talk) 14:39, 16 June 2015 (UTC)
Irving is simply not a reliable source. If you look at an even handed book then see Danny Parkers book about the massacre. -- -- fdewaele, 16 June 2015, 18:34.
Furthermore your first post was a link to the IHR, an organization well known for being the world's leading Holocaust denial organization. You could not have found a worse source for your allegations. For instance, the statement "The "Malmedy Massacre" is revealed by Irving to be a hoax invented by wartime sensation-mongers. During the Battle of the Bulge, a unit of the 1st Panzer Division killed over 80 GIs during a fire fight. The American dead were laid out in rows in the snow, but the Germans were forced to withdraw from Malmedy before the dead soldiers were buried" is complete bullshit and contradicts all the testimonies provided by the survivors within a few hours after the massacre took place. If you wish to contribute to this kind of articles I strongly suggest that you become more critical on the kind of sources you intend to use and that you look for more reliable one. And by the way, the massacres of Belgian civilians by the same Waffen-SS unit in Stavelot and Trois-Ponts the day after the Malmedy massacre is also a well established historical fact. --Lebob (talk) 18:31, 16 June 2015 (UTC)

So... the proof there was a massacre rather than a lack of planning as indicated by overwhelming evidence is that Joachim Pieper's troops killed other people? By that definition all armies in the world are responsible for every massacre throughout history. Also, IHR is respecable as a source, it publishes a peer reviewed magazine which is sometimes used under google scholar, just look it up @ (talk) 02:51, 25 June 2015 (UTC)

I have reverted this edit because the quoted source is contested. The idea is that you get wp:CONSENSUS for such edits here on the talk page. - DVdm (talk) 08:48, 25 June 2015 (UTC)

Okay, please don't impute any ulterior motives on my part- I didn't know there was such a strict entry criteria for sources.InterPersonalAutomaton (talk) 01:22, 26 June 2015 (UTC)

Resolving Bias and Defining Appropriate Source Material[edit]

As mentioned earlier by much more experienced editors, Wikipedia is interested in a "majority or significant minority" concerning sources for opinions and information related to these topics. My question is, how does one define a "significant minority", and who gets to decide that? I have personally read four different books concerning the German military that mention a viewpoint entirely different than the "cold-blooded massacre" theory. Is this sufficient to justify inserting another viewpoint into the article? Our goal is obviously neutrality and to present the facts to the reader to allow them to make their own judgments. How can this be achieved if any evidence that disagrees with the "cold-blooded massacre" theory is labeled an "unreliable, discredited" source, while authors who use biased information that conform to the popular conclusion are accepted without hesitation? The accepted opinion - that basically suggests Kampfgruppe Peiper and the Waffen-SS as a whole were comprised of ruthless killers without emotions blindly following orders - is entirely misleading and a lazy non-attempt at understanding America's enemy during the war. Although there is no doubt that atrocities occurred, it seems they are misrepresented in a larger context so the reader gets the impression the Allies never killed a single civilian or POW, and the Germans did it as part of a premeditated, calculated routine. Any scholar can agree this is grossly biased and an enormous exaggeration - presumably caused by the effects of wartime propaganda and the "first wave" of authors on the subject - and not due to serious examination of all the empirical evidence. Hopefully enough time has passed so that emotions don't permeate the facts.

Furthermore, there exist countless sworn affidavits from German soldiers that they never heard of killing prisoners (and that they were tortured to gain false confessions of their complicity in the murders), testimonies from American soldiers and officers (Lieutenant Colonel Hal McCown, for example) who have testified to their proper and correct treatment as POW's by Jochen Peiper's men, and numerous published literature presenting Peiper and his soldiers in an entirely different light.

Why would American Colonel Everett and Lt. Colonel McCown lie on behalf of their previous enemy during the Malmedy trial about the conduct of Peiper's men if they were really killers and criminals? Indeed, what role did vengeance on the part of Allies play in determining guilt and extracting confessions? How much of the witch hunt for war criminals was motivated or fueled by media sensationalism and a desire to "punish" the enemy? These questions must be at least considered before an accurate representation of the truth can emerge.

I would very much be interested in a joint effort to piece together an accurate, non-political, honest depiction of Peiper, his men, and the Malmedy incident in the wider context of the Second World War, using verifiable sources and original documents, letters, testimonies, etc. But I would rather not waste my time researching and typing out my sources if the findings are going to be simply censored in favor of a point of view that agrees with status quo, or be personally censured and called names because the evidence disagrees with somebody's cherished opinion. That kind of behavior benefits no one, and is shameful to the memory of our sacrifices during the War.

Any thoughts on creating an unbiased consensus about these topics to update the current articles? Shall I start with some sources and we can discuss what to use (or not use)? Kerouac86 (talk) 22:09, 19 November 2015 (UTC)Kerouac86

The obvious place to start would be to name the sources. (Hohum @) 22:27, 19 November 2015 (UTC)

Withdrawal of "Retaliation against German soldiers"[edit]

I have noticed that the whole "Retaliation against German soldiers" has been withdrawn at once with the single comment "not in source". I however noticed that there were 4 different sources backing up this section with in most cases precises references to the pages numbers of the sources. I am therefore wondering what the comment "not in source" exactly means. Does it mean that Volunteer Marek has checked every single source cited and has come to the conclusion that they do not contain what is written in the article including the citations? --Lebob (talk) 11:03, 29 June 2016 (UTC)

It's not in the Thayer source and without that source the rest of the paragraph is really WP:SYNTH and WP:OR. This source is a WP:PRIMARY source which only mentions the topic in a single sentence, in a footnote, in passing. This source is used to source the fact that "there is no evidence... that American troops took advantage of orders, implicit or explicit, to kill their SS prisoners." - it doesn't make sense to include it if we don't include the Thayer source and the primary source since it's being included as a WP:SYNTH sort of response to them. I think that's the only 3 sources in the section.Volunteer Marek (talk) 17:23, 29 June 2016 (UTC)


Per this revision, the article appears to have been written in British English. I suppose a case could be made that MOS:TIES applies here. What do folk think? We certainly can't continue with a mixture of spelling formats. --John (talk) 12:05, 1 July 2016 (UTC)

Massacre or battle[edit]

If it is correct that "Several POWs later testified that a few of the prisoners had tried to escape, and others claimed that some prisoners had picked up their previously discarded weapons and shot at the German troops when they attempted to continue toward Ligneuville" this incident at least was not a massacre, but a battle.Royalcourtier (talk) 22:42, 9 September 2016 (UTC)

All that matters for our purposes is how reliable sources describe it.Volunteer Marek (talk) 00:43, 10 September 2016 (UTC)