A handful of Irishmen fought for Nazi Germany – but only two ever wore the uniform of the notorious Waffen-SS…
During the Second World War, two young Irishmen served in the armed forces of Nazi Germany, swearing the oath of the Waffen-SS, wearing the organisation’s uniform and even its distinctive blood group tattoo.
James Brady from Roscommon and Frank Stringer from Leitrim were under the direct command of Otto Skorzeny, the man who rescued Italian dictator Benito Mussolini from a mountain-top prison, and they were involved in some of the most ferocious fighting of the war in the last days of the Third Reich.
Ironically these young men had originally joined an Irish regiment of the British army, and but for a twist of fate would have ended up fighting against the Germans. Instead, the pair were recruited to the German special forces after they were captured on the island of Jersey.
Based on new research from the two men’s own accounts and on state papers which have been recently released.