29 Tammuz 5701
Excerpt from Ordinary Men:
Postwar judicial interrogations in the Federal Republic of Germany, stemming from scant documentation, uncovered further information about the murderous swath Police Battalions 45 and 315 cut across the Soviet Union in the fall of 1941. Police Battalion 45 had reached the Ukrainian town of Shepetovka on July 24, when its commander Major Martin Besser, was summoned by the head of Police Regiment South, Colonel Franz. Franz told Besser that by order of Himmler the Jews in Russia were to be destroyed and his Police Battalion 45 was to take part in this task. Within days the battalion had massacred the several hundred remaining Jews in Shepetovka, including women and children. Three-figure massacres in various towns followed in August. In September the battalion provided cordon, escort, and shooters for the executions of thousands of Jews in Berditchev and Vinnitsa. The battalion's brutal activities climaxed in Kiev on September 29 and 30, when policemen again provided cordon, escort, and shooters for the murder of over 33,000 Jews in the ravine of Babi Yar.