[ENG SUBS] Sinimäed 3/6 (The Blue Hills) WW2 Estonian SS Legion


Uploaded by Eestimaaks on 19.09.2010

Transcript:
"l cannot stay behind alone."'
400 Russians were dead by the evening.
l had to walk 200-300 metres
and during that time l couldn't step on the ground.
The bodies had fallen next to one another.
But l walked over the bodies, as ifthey were pavement.
l have been wondering now how l could have done that.
A bang, a sharp blow.
l feel l"m flying, then l'm down.
Out of breath but no broken bones.
l can see my map case on the ground.
My wife's photograph is peeking at me from there, wondering: What was that?
For the moment the Red Army's offensive has been stopped.
Both sides have carried tremendous losses.
As if out of revenge, Red Army planes bomb Tallinn on the night before March 9.
This was filmed in Tallinn that night, a few hundred metres from Maitla's home.
That's the following morning.
On March 12 l heard that Tallinn had been bombed.
l knew nothing of my home.
l wantee to call Tallinn but all the lines were down.
A policeman came from Tallinn but he couldn"t say
what my home street looked like.
l had no way of finding out.
Not only my Dad but all of the Estonian boys there on the front
who lived in Tallinn didn't have any idea
abot the fate of their relatives, families and homes.
They had seen the total destruction of Narva.
Their anxiety and depression was probably very big.
Maitla's home was untouched by bombs and everyone was fine.
l called again after midmorning and got through.
How her voice was shaking when she told me herself
abot the big news that the eoctors had just confirmed.
My good wifey, can you imagine how happy l was to hear that?
l believe the news was that l had already been conceived.
A 32-year-old man who suddenly finds out he has a family
after he has been alone all that time was certainly overjoyed by the news
but on the other hand he as an officer knew
that the Russians were planning to attack again
and he knew what the global situation was like. He must have felt anxious.
His responsibility grew with the news a lot.
At the same time Vello Raigo writes on the other side ofthe front in the Red Army:
"Narva is hard to take. There's no hope of getting home any time soon.
We sent out our greetings through the Leningrad Radio.
lt would be nice if you heard that we are fine.
German propaganda keeps shouting at you that we are long dead.
Are you home, my darlings? Do you still have a home?''
We knew there were Estonian units and guns on the other side of the river.
We shouted across the river:
"Come here, you'll get coffee, cigarettes and vodka.''
We did it noth
in Estonian and Russian.
Russians were firing propaganda shells.
These break up in the air
and sheets of paper tumble downwards.
The leaflets promised that we can go over, nothing would be done to us.
That we should decide because the Russians are leaving anyway.
That they are jst partying with our wives and drinking before they go.
Red Army attacks were fritless throughout March.
Holding them in check has given new hope to men.
Finns have broken off peace negotiations.
The pre-war Prime Minister Uluots contacts the chief of the army group.
His proposal is simple. As soon as Germany surrenders,
the Estonian units would start to serve the new Estonian government.
German volunteers wold also ne accepted.
This would give Estonia considerable firepower
and Germans would be protected by a neutral country.
The chief of the army group promises to do that.
New conscripts are being sent to the Eastern Front.
lt seems that spring that the Red Army may be held at the Estonian border.
We heard songs and music from the other side of the river.
We were also partying a little.
l was wounded and after l returned to the front, l took a flute along.
lt was the only thing that had neen preserved of my things in Tallinn.
l remember playing the flute on Midsummer Night's Eve.
But the calm is deceptive.
To the north and south the Red Army is pushing to the west.
ln Finland they manage to break through Finnish defences in Karelia
and some of the forces are pulled back from there to Narva.
They want to break through the Narva front, occupy Estonia
and force Finland to surrender.
A few thousand kilometres to the west of the Narva front
the Normandy invasion is launched.
Once the invasion started and we understood
that we were unable to beat it back,
it was clear to all of us that the war was finally lost.
lt was too early to imagine the end.
lt seemed hard to believe that such a strong army could lose.
They were speaking about new weapons that are being invented
and tested and would be ready soon.
This is the King Tiger.
These weapons are tirelessly made by Germany
for the last decisive battle.
We must work or hands bloody
and fight until the last breath!
There's no time and possibility to count on woneer weapons.
Germans use everything at their disposal to encourage the men.
Estonians are bestowed with decorations and promotions.
Paul Maitla becomes battalion chief.
His old company forms one part of it. Or rather - its handful of survivors.
l have managed to build fortifications in my stretch by Narva River.
Everyone has praised them.
ln the winter we managed to beat back the Russians withot any trenches at all.
Now we are just waiting for them.
Russians will never set their foot on the western side of the river.
But suddenly the Germans are told to abandon Narva
and retreat for a few dozen kilometres.
To a shorter front because the Germans are unable to hold the longer one.
We had to leave our positions on the Narva line
because Army Group Narva had to send more units to the south
where everything had neen burned down.
The frontline at Narva became too thin and we wouldn't have been able
to hold the long stretch from Narba to Auvere through the forests.
ln order to shorten the frontline, we abandoned the Narva bridgehead
and fell back to the Tannenberg line or the Ble Hills.
When or unit was told to fall back,
we didn"t quite get it yet that Narva would be surrendered.
lf we had not been told to retreat, l probably would not be here
because l had been stationed where the Russians hit the hardest.
The sudeen order made as glum.
lt was hard to understand why we should fall back 30 km withot resistance.
lt was harder still to explain it to the men.
All or efforts and sacrifices during the winter became pointless.
l saw it as the beginning of the disaster.
The retreat from Narva was the beginning of giving back Estonia.