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Joseph 'Sepp' Dietrich
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Military Personnel
    (May 28, 1892-April 21, 1966)
    Died in Ludwigsburg, West Germany
    Notably the creator of Hitler's personal bodyguard and commander of the 6th SS Panzer Division.
    In 1928 he created Hitler's personal bodyguard unit, which came to be known as 'Stosstrupp Adolf Hitler.'
    Again in 1933 after Hitler became chancellor, he recreated Hitler's bodyguard unit, which became the more brutal SS-Leibstandarte Adolf Hitler (Life Guards of Adolf Hitler).
    In June 1934, Dietrich persuaded Hitler to turn the SS-Leibstandarte into a military unit.
    Dietrich lobbied Hitler to have the opposing Nazi SA leaders killed. In what became known as 'the night of the long knives,' the SS massacred and murdered all SA men.
    During the invasion of Poland, the SS-Leibstandarte steam rolled all opposing forces, military and civilian.
    His SS combat units wreaked havoc in the Soviet Union under his command.
    During the Allied invasion of Normandy, he commanded the 6th SS Panzer Army. The 6th SS Army was responsible for the massacre of dozens of American POW's in Malmedy, Belgium.
    He smoked.
    He surrendered to the Allies in classic military tradition, instead of committing suicide like many of his fellow commanders did.
    He spent the years from 1946 to 1959 serving jail sentences for being a major force behind the massacre at Malmedy and the night of the long knives.
    After being released from prison he became an advocate for the recognition of SS soldiers as military veterans, in great contrast to the SS members who had caused the Holocaust.

Credit: Break Dancing Robot


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