The last Jew in Vinnitsa, 1941

By RHP | Posted on: November 20, 2013 | Updated on: June 9, 2014
The last Jew in Vinnitsa, 1941

The last Jew of Vinnitsa, 1941

A picture from an Einsatzgruppen soldier’s personal album, labelled on the back as “Last Jew of Vinnitsa”. It shows a member of Einsatzgruppe D just about to shoot a Jewish man kneeling before a filled mass grave in Vinnitsa, Ukraine, in 1941. All 28,000 Jews from Vinnitsa and its surrounding areas were massacred at the time.

There were two mass shootings in Vinnitsa, on the 16th September, and the other on 22nd September. A subsequent massacre of Jews appears to have been of Jews brought in from outside the district. This is the evidence for the date of this photograph. There was one eye witness to the procedure involved. Wehrmacht officer Lieutenant Erwin Bingel had been ordered to assist the Commandant of Uman district with men to guard the railway lines and around the airport. He was aware that ditches had been dug on the perimeter of the airfield and a number of specialist SS men had arrived by transport plane. The Jews of the area had been ordered to gather for a ‘census’.

Hannah Arendt wrote about “the banality of evil”: “The neutral expressions on the shooter and his uniformed audience pretty well encapsulate that concept: they could be watching a barber cut hair, instead of the heartless extermination of innocents. Humans can adapt to endure almost anything, but in doing so, they sometimes perpetuate incredible evil. The death of human empathy is one of the earliest and most telling signs of a culture about to fall into barbarism.”

Below you can read an excerpte from: “Erwin Bingel: Eyewitness to Mass Murder at Uman and Vinnitsa in the Ukraine”:

On the 22 September 1941 Lieutenant Bingel and his men witnessed a second massacre in Vinnitsa. This was followed by a third, also in Vinnitsa, carried out by Ukrainian militia who had been trained by the SS, and were commanded by a small group of SS officers and NCO’s. In the first two massacres, Bingel calculated first twenty-four thousand and then twenty-eight thousand Jews were killed. In the third, Ukrainian militia killings, six thousand were murdered.

Lieutenant Bingel recalled: “In the morning at 10.15, wild shooting and terrible human cries reached our ears. At first I failed to grasp what was taking place, but when I approached the window from which I had a broad view over the whole of the town park, the following spectacle unfolded before my eyes and those of my men, who, alerted by the tumult, had meanwhile gathered in my room.Ukrainian militia on horseback, armed with pistols, rifles and long straight cavalry swords, were riding wildly inside and around the town park. As far as we could make out, they were driving people along before their horses- men, women and children. A shower of bullets was then fired at this human mass. Those not hit outright were struck down with the swords. Like some ghostly apparition, this horde of Ukrainians, let loose and commanded by SS officers, trampled savagely over human bodies, ruthlessly killing innocent children, mothers and old people whose only crime was that they had escaped the great mass murder, so as eventually to be shot or beaten to death like wild animals.”

The result of this proclamation was, of course, that all persons concerned appeared as ordered. This relatively harmless summons, it was thought, could be connected in some way or other with the preparations we were observing. It was because we took the matter so lightly that we were all the more horrified at what we witnessed during the next few hours. One row of Jews was ordered to move forward and was then allocated to the different tables where they had to undress completely and hand over everything they wore and carried.

Some still carried jewelry which they had to put on the table. Then having taken off all their clothes, they were made to stand in line in front of the ditches, irrespective of their sex. The commandos then marched in behind the line and began to perform the inhuman acts, the horror of which is now known to the whole world. With automatic pistols and 0.8 pistols these men mowed down the line with such zealous intent that one could have supposed this activity to have been their life work.

The people in the first row thus having been killed in the most inhuman manner, those of the second row were now ordered to step forward. The men in this row were ordered to step out and were handed shovels with which to heap chloride of lime upon the still partly moving bodies in the ditch. Thereafter they returned to the tables and undressed.

After that they had to set out on the same last walk as their murdered brethren…

Category: WW2

20 thoughts on “The last Jew in Vinnitsa, 1941

  1. Michael DohnalekMichael Dohnalek

    I hope the Russians got the shooter and tortured him well before giving him his ticket to hell, and that he didn’t end up a fat cat sitting in West Berlin !

    1. rurban

      Well, according to an NSA insider, the US and European intelligence works very closely together with the former Nazi intelligence (SS, now CGG) in the former IG Farben buildings in Frankfurt and Berlin.

      The CIA torture manuals also seem to origin from SS manuals.
      So those surviving fat cats were sitting in Frankfurt and Berlin.


      Michael, the shooter is an Ukrainian militia man. The picture and the testimony was made by Erwin Bingel.

  2. WhyYouWantMyName

    And then they say Muslims are terrorists and ISLAM isn’t a peaceful religion ?

    1. JC

      what the fuck does this have to do with Muslims? and yeah it isn’t a peaceful religion

      1. Roa

        Dont judge islam for what SOME ignorant muslims do, islam is not like what the media wants you to see.

      2. KJ

        JC – What the Muslims (ISIS, ISIL, or whatever you want to call them) are doing much the same thing as the fucking Nazi’s did, and WE ALL are doing much the same as the World did back then…standing on the sidelines and watching. You’re a fucking idiot.

        1. zots

          Strange because worldwide Christians have spread more evil and hurt more people then any religion known to humans ever

  3. Kurt Kuttner

    Fifty eight thousand murders, according to one eye witness, in a precisely known location. Don’t suppose the graves have ever been proven to exist.

  4. Ridge

    Boko Harum is a Muslim organization in Africa. They are in the process of exterminating all non-Muslims and those Muslims of a different sect. So humans have learned nothing from Hitler and the Second World War.

  5. holyman

    It’s likely those who comitted this heinous crimes are still alive .

  6. Wise Cave Owl

    I’m afraid not: no yellow star, not a Jew. And tens of thousands of Vinnitsa District Jews were shot during the summer months of the following year, 1942..

  7. josh

    people who live by the sword, die by the sword; it’s obvious that these racist regimes do not last very long; we all know the outcomes of these modern-day extremists trying to “sanitize” their race/religion.

  8. noc

    And then, the same practice they do in Palestine peoples

  9. Seth Lefkow

    ….and we’re supposed to feel sorry for the Ukrainians being besieged by the Russians. Nah, forget it. When the Nazis couldn’t afford German troops to do their executions late in the war, the Ukrainians did it for them.

  10. YY

    Vinnitsa is the town where my grandfather was born. Had he not left in 1917 as a young man for Palestine, to build up Israel as a homeland for the Jews – he would have no doubt ended at the bottom of a pit like this (like virtually anybody else of his family).

    Sadly, atrocities like these regularly take places, as Islamist terrorists murder unarmed civilians in very similar fashion. This takes place in Syria, Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan (to name but a few places). ISIS-Daech (and other metastatic spin-offs of the murderous Islamist carcinoma) brutally and sadistically murder women, men and children in a fashion identical to the way the Nazis and their henchmen murdered Jews. And today – like back then – the world does nothing to eradicate those murderers from the face of this earth. We have learnt nothing from the holocaust.

  11. Jay Simkin

    The text needs to be revised. First, these acts were murders. The term “killing” “or “shooting” has no place in a genocide. A “killing” or a “shooting” can be accidental. There was nothing accidental about what befell these Jews. A “killing” or a “shooting’ can be completely lawful, if in self-defense. There was no evidence that any of these Jews was – in any way – a threat to anyone. In US English, only “murder” describes the deliberate taking of an innocent life, with malice aforethought. That describes – exactly – what was done to these Jews.

    Further, the word “massacre” has no place in the context of a genocide. Genocides are planned events. A “massacre” usually is a one-place, one-time event, with an element of spontaneity. There was nothing spontaneous about these murders. They were planned.

    Finally, the word “extermination” has no place in the discussion of a genocide. “Extermination” – in US English – is what is done to harmful insects or rodents. The Nazis used “extermination” because they considered Jews (and Roma) to be sub-humans and harmful. Use of “extermination” shows acceptance of the Nazi perspective. That’s wrong. Nazi terms have no place in English, except when quoting directly from Nazi-era documents. That Hannah Arendt uses “extermination” bespeaks her lack of command of English.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *