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aruna
02-20-2019, 07:48 PM
This is the situation: a young woman and man, aged 17-19, are travelling together in France in 1943. They are both German citizens but on the run from the Nazis: the woman because she is Jewish and is on her way to meet the rest of her family in Poitiers, the man because he has defected from the Wehrmacht and will be executed if caught. The route is Metz-Paris-Poitiers. The woman has genuine papers: she has a German name and is not known to the German authorities as Jewish. The man has forged papers under a false name.

I take it that the woman could travel by train without a problem because her papers are genuine; she does not look Jewish and she has a good cover story if questioned. She is perfectly bi-lingual. He speaks a little French and native German.

The man is problematic. I guess I can't let him travel officially by train? I was thinking of giving him a legitimate reason to be in France as a young German and not in the Wehrmacht. It's no problem for him to get forged papers -- could he be a (medical) student? Were students exempted from conscription? Were they exempted in Germany? I think they must have been, remembering Sophie Scholl and her brother and their friends -- all students.

Thanks for any suggestions!
They have links to the Resistance, and I could have them being helped South by the resistance network. The man is actually an escort for the woman as she has never left home before, so I can't separate them for too long.

Siri Kirpal
02-20-2019, 10:10 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

AFAIK, every able bodied adult male was conscripted by the Germans in WWII.

Perhaps you could have those papers make him out to be Swiss?

Also, if they manage to get on the train, have the man pretend to sleep and have the woman tell the officials searching the train that he's ill. They tended to leave such folks alone.

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

WeaselFire
02-21-2019, 12:25 AM
Give him a beard and a limp. Travel documents and just about everything official at the time was easy to forge, escaped POWs used forged papers quite a bit.

Jeff

aruna
02-21-2019, 04:38 PM
Thanks -- a beard and a limp sound good! Siri Kirpal, I can't make him Swiss as the point about his is that he's defected from the Wehrmacht.

WeaselFire
02-21-2019, 09:09 PM
Thanks -- a beard and a limp sound good! Siri Kirpal, I can't make him Swiss as the point about his is that he's defected from the Wehrmacht.

I think Siri meant to give him documents that said he was Swiss. Which could work, especially with his language skills, except that the Germans weren't terribly fond of the Swiss at the time, which could get them suspicious. Belgian or Norwegian documents might be better since he doesn't speak French well, or maybe have him travel under his Wermacht documents, or even SS documents, with special orders to infiltrate the French underground.

Jeff

Siri Kirpal
02-21-2019, 10:53 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

Yes, making the fake documents say he's Swiss, when he's really German, was exactly what I meant. But any country with lots of German speakers would do.

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

aruna
02-23-2019, 06:48 PM
OK, sorry for the misunderstanding. That's a good option. I'm now thinking of having him travel as a German soldier -- quite simply. Pu him in a uniform, give him the right documents with a false name -- would that work? It's often said that disguises should be as close to the truth as possible....

jclarkdawe
02-23-2019, 07:06 PM
OK, sorry for the misunderstanding. That's a good option. I'm now thinking of having him travel as a German soldier -- quite simply. Pu him in a uniform, give him the right documents with a false name -- would that work? It's often said that disguises should be as close to the truth as possible....

He could be returning from leave or being transferred from the Eastern Front. However, he's going to have to know enough about the unit to be able to answer questions on it. If he's returning from leave, you need to decide how inappropriate his leave was.

Understand that if he was healthy, he most likely would be going to the Eastern Front. The Germans were going through a lot of men there. The Western Front wasn't terribly active and served for second tier soldiers, such as those too young and immature, or injured but fit for service. However, something like a walking cast would be easy to do and supply a credible reason for a soldier being transferred from the Eastern Front to France.

Jim Clark-Dawe

CWatts
02-24-2019, 09:14 PM
He could be returning from leave or being transferred from the Eastern Front. However, he's going to have to know enough about the unit to be able to answer questions on it. If he's returning from leave, you need to decide how inappropriate his leave was.
.... However, something like a walking cast would be easy to do and supply a credible reason for a soldier being transferred from the Eastern Front to France.

Jim Clark-Dawe

I wonder if a bandaged head would work? A concussion could explain memory issues, plus it could be over his eye or something that could help conceal his identity. The obvious advantage over a walking cast is he could still run if necessary.

Just don't make him seem too impaired - did the Nazis kill their own troops who had brain damage?

jclarkdawe
02-25-2019, 03:46 AM
The advantage of a plaster (or now a fiberglass) cast is it will survive an incredible amount of scrutiny. Without cutting the cast open, the only way to know what is going on is with an x-ray machine. If the fracture was a closed fracture, even cutting it open might not show anything.

However, a plaster cast can be done of the head, and jaw area. It could even cover one or both eyes. The skull very rarely needs a cast, as it tends to be somewhat stable, but the jaw is another matter. The other option would be a bandage wrap, with makeup being applied underneath. With a bandage wrap, you're gambling on no one asking you to remove the bandage, or lifting it up. However, makeup can create the appearance of a wound, and with a talented makeup artist, scare the be-jesus out of anyone looking at it.

The Germans were massively short of soldiers. If you could be made whole enough to serve in some capacity, you stayed in. I seriously doubt that the Germans would kill any of their own troops.

Jim Clark-Dawe

aruna
02-25-2019, 08:14 PM
Thanks all! My AW page doesn't seem to be working well today so I'll come back in a day or two with more questions. In the meantime thanks a million, this is all very useful.