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Berlin: German

SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend

with Wayne Turner

Before August 1944 SS-Panzergrenadier-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 was one of the main training and replacement units for 12. SS-Panzerdivision Hitlerjugend. It sent over 2500 replacements to the division during 1944 as they were fighting in France, before the final wave of replacements sent to the division included the staff of the battalion as well.

SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend

The battalion was reformed as SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend at Kaiserlautern, southwest Germany, in August 1944. It was later transferred to Nienburg on the Weser River in northwest Germany 

In March and April 1945, with the British and Canadians advancing through northwest German, the battalion, under the command of SS-Hauptsturmführer Hans Peinemann (who had previously commanded a company of 25. SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiment Hitlerjugend in Normandy), became involved in heavy fighting on the Weser and Aller Lines, and the area north of both rivers.

SS-Ausbildungs-und Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend proved to be an aggressive and enthusiastic battalion. It was made up of 17- to 19-year-old Hitler Youth recruits led by experienced officers and NCOs. The battalion nicknamed itself Panzer-Teufel (Tank Devils) and were heavy equipped with Panzerfaust anti-tank weapons, as well as rifles and machine-guns, to put their new nickname into action. They also formed tank-hunter groups to actively hunt and destroy enemy tanks. For this purpose they were armed with Panzerfaust and Panzerschreck anti-tank weapons.

SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend
SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend

During this time the battalion was attached to 2. Marine-Grenadierdivision. The remnants of the battalion managed to retreat to the area of Hamburg.

Also stationed at Nienburg was SS-Felderersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend, which is a separate unit whose role was normally to receive the replacements in the field. However, during the fighting on the Weser and Aller Rivers the two battalions fought alongside each other under the unified command of SS-Obersturmbannführer Bernhard Siebken (commander of 25. SS-Panzergrenadier-Regiment Hitlerjugend in Normandy, who was later hanged for executing Canadian prisoners in Normandy), along with other ersatz troops in the area.

In Flames Of War

To field a Force based on the SS-Ausbildungs-und-Ersatz-Bataillon 12 Hitlerjugend you can use the SS-Panzerbrigade Westfalen Berlin: German Command Cards. Use the Battle Group command card to build a Formation. However, they lacked mortars, so if you want to accurately represent these troops do not take the 8cm SS Mortar Platoon (LG210). Use the SS Grenadier Platoon and SS Tank-hunting Platoon command cards to build these units.  

Last Updated On Friday, February 2, 2024 by Wayne at Battlefront