Suppression of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising (April 22, 1943)
On April 19, 1943, Jürgen Stroop (1895-1951) – SS Brigadeführer, major general of the police, and head of the SS and police in Warsaw – took command of the so-called large-scale operation [Großaktion] in the Warsaw ghetto. The aim of the operation was to clear the ghetto of all remaining Jews and to put down the armed uprising of Jewish resistance fighters. After the operation ended on May 16, 1943, Stroop compiled the report that would eventually bear his name. The Stoop Report consists of three sections: a written account of events; Stroop’s communiqués on the course of the operation to Friedrich Wilhelm Krüger (1894-1945), leader of the SS and police in the General Government; and photographic documentation. The Stroop Report was used as evidence by the prosecution at the Nuremberg Trial of the Major War Criminals. On March 21, 1947, a U.S. military tribunal found Stroop guilty of participating in the murder of American prisoners of war and sentenced him to death. He was later extradited to Poland, where he was tried in Warsaw from July 18 to July 23, 1951. Polish authorities were given one of the rare original copies of the Stroop Report to aid in his prosecution. He was sentenced to death by hanging and executed on September 21, 1951, in Warsaw.
The photograph, taken from the Stroop Report, shows a German assault detachment in the Warsaw ghetto and residential buildings in flames. The original caption reads: “Fumigation of Jews & bandits.”