Special Prosecution Book-Poland

Special Prosecution Book-Poland (German: Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen, Polish: Specjalna księga Polaków ściganych listem gończym) was the proscription list prepared by the Germans immediately before the onset of war, that identified more than 61,000 members of Polish elites: activists, intelligentsia, scholars, actors, former officers, and prominent others, who were to be interned or shot on the spot upon their identification following the invasion.


Nearly two years before the invasion of the Second Polish Republic, between 1937 and 1939, the Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen was being secretly prepared in Germany. It was compiled by the "Zentralstelle IIP Polen" (Central Unit IIP-Poland) unit of the Geheime Staatspolizei or Gestapo ("Secret State Police") with help from some members of the German minority living in pre-war Poland.

Execution of Poles in Kórnik by SS-Einsatzgruppe, 20 October 1939. Image from German Federal Archive

The Central Unit IIP-Poland was created by Reinhard Heydrich in order to coordinate the ethnic cleansing of all Poles in "Operation Tannenberg" and the Intelligenzaktion, two codenames for the extermination actions directed at the Polish people during the opening stages of World War II.

Formally, the Intelligenzaktion was a second phase of Operation Tannenberg (Unternehmen Tannenberg) conducted by Heydrich's Sonderreferat. It lasted until January 1940 as the first part of the Generalplan Ost. In Pomerania alone 36,000–42,000 Poles including children were killed already before the end of 1939.

The list identified more than 61,000 members of Polish elite: activists, intelligentsia, scholars, actors, former officers, Polish nobility, Catholic priests, university professors, teachers, doctors, lawyers and even a prominent sportsman who had represented Poland in the Berlin Olympics in 1936. People in the Special Prosecution Book were either killed outright by Einsatzgruppen and Volksdeutscher Selbstschutz or sent to concentration camps to die. The German death squads including Einsatzkommando 16 and EK-Einmann fell under direct command of SS-Sturmbannführer Rudolf Tröger, with overall command by Reinhard Heydrich.

The second and last edition of Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen in German and Polish was published in 1940 in occupied Kraków after the end of AB-Aktion (in German Ausserordentliche Befriedungsaktion). Later lists were published under the name of Fahndungsnachweis.

See also

  • Sonderfahndungsliste G.B. ("Special Search List Great Britain"), "The Black Book" of prominent residents of Britain.


  • Sonderfahndungsbuch Polen. Ergänzungsnachtrag über entwichene oder vorzeitig entlassene Straf... 1. Juni 1940, Krakau,
  • Andrzej Leszek Szcześniak, Plan zagłady Słowian. Generalplan Ost, Polskie Wydawnictwo Encyklopedyczne PWE, Radom, 2001
  • Fritz Arlt: Polen- Ukrainer-Judenpolitik im Generalgouvernement für die besetzten polnischen Gebiete 1939 bis 1940 in Oberschlesien 1941 bis 1943 und im Freiheitskampf der unterdrückten Ostvölker, Lindhorst, Wissenschaftlicher Buchdienst Taege, 1995
  • Wacław Długoborski: Zweiter Weltkrieg und sozialer Wandel, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 1981, S. 309

External links

Uses material from the Wikipedia article Special Prosecution Book-Poland, released under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.