In the autumn of 1939, SS-Brigadeführer, Bruno Streckenbach, founded an intelligence school for personnel from SIPO, SD, and Ukrainian and Polish collaborators. The school was located at hotel Stamary on the outskirts of Zakopane, about 100 kilometres south of Krakow, near the Slovak border. Head of the school was SS-Hauptsturmführer, Hans Krüger. In July 1940, the school was moved to the small spa town of Rabka about fourty kilometres north of Zakopane. The school was first located in a former Jewish school, but in November it moved to a four-story building in the northern part of the city that previously served as a girls’ school. Shortly after the move, Krüger was transferred to Krakow and the new head of the school became Krüger’s deputy SS-Untersturmführer, Wilhelm Rosenbaum.

In connection with Germany’s invasion of Soviet Union, June 1941, the school cancelled its teaching, but it was resumed in december 1941. The school was now called Befehlshaber de Sicherheitspolizei und des SD im GG (General) Schule des Sicherheitspolizei. The training of senior officers lasted between three to six months and aimed at preparing or complete existing training for their duties on the Eastern front. In charge for the training were a small number of lower SS officers. But sometimes prominent Nazis such as Hans Frank, Governor of GG, Friedrich Krüger, senior SS and Police leader in GG, Odilo Globocnik, head of Operation Reinhardt, Hermann Höfle, Globocnik deputy and Karl Georg Eberhardt from the SS in Krakow, came to give lectures.

Around the main building (school), smaller workshops, casinos, prisoner barracks and a forest shooting range behind the school were built. Building materials were retrieved from Jewish cemeteries where gravestones were used for road construction. Workshops, casinos and maintenance work were carried out by Jewish prisoners. In addition to theoretical teaching, pupils learned about killing methods. This learning took place at the shooting range where pupils. Here they practiced different methods of killing, such as shooting on moving target or methods in hanging. ”The practice targets” were mainly Jews who had not yet been evacuated from the area. But a rumour is that a transport with children from Auschwitz arrived in Rabka to be used as moving targets at the shooting range.

It was not only at the school in Rabka that similar ”teaching” took place, but this also happened elsewhere, albeit more unofficially than at Rabka. The school staff also actively participated in round-ups and selections of Jews from the region around Rabka. Some Jews were selected for work around the school, others were murdered or sent to other places where there was a need for labor. Rosenbaum was dismissed from the school spring 1943, when he and others at the school were subjected to an internal investigation regarding corruption. In July 1944, the school was moved to Berlin as the Soviet army approached Rabka.

Current status: Preserved with monument (2012).

Address: ul. Sloneczna 11, 34-700 Rabka-Zdroj.

Get there: Car.

My comment:

The school building remains but the text, Befehlshaber der Sicherheitspolizei und des SD im GG Schule des Sicherheitspolizei, which adorned the front of the school is gone. In 2012 the building housed a school for blind children. What may be left of the buildings that were built in connection with the school, I don’t know. Behind the school at the shooting range there is a cemetery and monuments but the place is not easy to find as there are no signs showing the way. The shooting range is more or less overgrown but it can be found because it is located right next to the monument. The monument consists of Jewish gravestones put together to form a monument. It was these gravestones that Nazis used to harden ground surfaces. In addition to this monument, there are several smaller monuments within the same enclosure.

Follow up in books: Höhne, Heinz: The Order of the Death’s Head: The story of Hitler’s SS (1969).