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Dr Franz Walter Stahlecker (10 October 190023 March 1942) was in 1941/42 Commander of the Sicherheitspolizeimarker and the Sicherheitsdienstmarker ( ; BdS) for the Reichskommissariat Ostland. In this capacity, Stahlecker also commanded Einsatzgruppe A, the most murderous of the four Einsatzgruppen (Nazi death squads during the Holocaust) active in German-occupied Eastern Europe.

Early career

Born in Sternenfelsmarker in 1900, he was trained as an administrative jurist. Stahlecker joined the Nazi Party in 1932 and in 1934 was appointed head of the Gestapomarker in the German state of Württembergmarker and soon assigned to the main office of the Sicherheitsdienstmarker (SD). After the incorporation of Austria in 1938, Stahlecker became SD chief of the Danube district (Viennamarker), a post he retained even after being promoted to SS-Standartenführer.

Differences of opinion with Reinhard Heydrich motivated him to move to the Auswärtiges Amtmarker (Foreign Office), after which he held posts in the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia under SS-Brigadeführer Karl Hermann Frank and, in 1940, in Norwaymarker, where he was promoted to SS-Oberführer.

Einsatzgruppe A

In June 1941 Stahlecker was promoted to SS-Brigadeführer and Generalmajor der Polizei and took over as commanding officer of Einsatzgruppe A in the hope of furthering his career with the Reichssicherheitshauptamtmarker (RSHAmarker), Nazi Germany's security police headquarters.

Einsatzgruppe A followed Army Group North and operated in the Baltic states and areas of Russiamarker up to Leningradmarker. Its mission was to hunt down and annihilate Jews, Gypsies, Communists, and other "undesirables". By winter 1941, Stahlecker reported to Berlinmarker that Einsatzgruppe A had murdered some 249,420 Jews. He was killed on March 23, 1942, in a clash with Soviet partisans near Krasnogvardeyskmarker, Russia.


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