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As tragic as the deaths of these women were, it should be understood that execution of prisoners guilty of espionage was not a violation of the Geneva Convention when the persons responsible for the espionage had operated out of uniform. Moreover, both the United States and Great Britain put German spies to death after military courtsmartial. It would seem, however, particularly poignant that these were all women. Indeed, it was against German law to execute female prisoners found guilty of espionage and so it was out of keeping with Nazi practice. This was especially irregular considering the fact that the higher ranking male SOE prisoners at Natzweiler, Dachau, and elsewhere were kept in relatively safe conditions. Nevertheless, at least twelve female SOE prisoners did not return from the camps.
Certain discrepancies arise in the account of Diana Rowden's death, as have been related in Rita Kramer's book, Flames in the Field. First, Rowden was supposed to have been recognizable by her British clothes, yet she was operating undercover as a French citizen. She arrived at Natzweiler in July, yet Brian Stonehouse is on record as witnessing her wearing a fur coat. The crematorium was in fact at a considerable distance from the camp itself, though several former prisoners testified at the Nuremberg trials that they witnessed some part of the execution, if only through a crack in the door. The four women were said to have been killed by an injection of phenol, but no witness was actually present when the lethal injection was given. Stonehouse, an SOE agent, was the primary source of knowledge of the execution and cremation of these women. He survived the war and the concentration camps and died in 1998. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 220.127.116.11 (talk • contribs)
- Please read WP:NOR before inserting any more Holocaust denial edits. Thanks. Jayjg (talk) 06:26, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
Don't know about "denial" in as much as there is factual basis in this. I'll look into providing better sources. Most of this article is unsourced. Thanks for the tip. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 18.104.22.168 (talk • contribs)
- @Jayjg -- "Moreover, both the United States and Great Britain put German spies to death after military courtsmartial." -- um, aside from Mata Hari, can you name any? Quis separabit? 06:21, 21 December 2016 (UTC)
- There is a detailed account of the executions in Helm, Sarah (2005). A Life in Secrets (Kindle ed.). London: Hachette Digital 2009. ISBN 9780748112302. One of the witness accounts is from a medical orderly who got the phenol out of the dispensary and witnessed it being injected. Other accounts (in the same book) are not identical, but any reasonable reading would make the conclusion that execution was carried out by an injection of phenol (as an alternative to hanging, which was felt by the executioners to be not a suitable method for women). It is not pleasant reading, but the detail is there for anyone who wants to verify the content of this article.ThoughtIdRetired (talk) 10:06, 21 December 2016 (UTC)
WikiProject class rating
This article was automatically assessed because at least one article was rated and this bot brought all the other ratings up to at least that level. BetacommandBot 11:13, 27 August 2007 (UTC)
Authoritative sources list only the MBE which was later removed as it should not have been given postumously, the mentioned in dispatches and the Croix de Guerre. Absence of other awards in authoritative sources suggests that their unreferrenced inclusion is an error. ThoughtIdRetired (talk) 23:57, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
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