Night of the Bayonets

75 years ago this spring a fascinating but forgotten battle was fought in the dying days of the Second World War. A group of Georgians rose up against their German overlords on the Dutch island of Texel. Thousands of Georgians served in the Soviet forces during World War II and among those who were captured, given the choice of “starve or fight”, some took up the German offer to don Wehrmacht uniforms.

When the opportunity arose, the Georgians took the decision to rise up and slaughter the Germans, seizing control of the island. In just a few hours, they massacred some 400 German officers using knives and bayonets to avoid raising the alarm.

Hitler urged retaliation and it wasn't until 12 days after war had ended that Canadian forces landed on the island and finally put an end to the slaughter. In this podcast Dan is joined by author Eric Lee to hear how he uncovered this little known story.


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