This photo is being shared online supposedly showing the execution of a German soldier for desertion by his own comrades.
It does not.
When I saw it I immediately knew something wasn’t quite right but couldn’t put my finger on it.
The scene just looked too staged, too posed.
Eventually I realised that the firing squad was not set up properly, they are not standing in a straight line parallel to the wall.
In stead they are standing in a sort of V-formation with the wall, the soldier on the far left is standing closer to the wall while all the soldiers should be standing the same distance from the wall.
On top of that the soldiers were standing very close to the victim and the wall, this could actually be dangerous, there is a risk of ricochet.
But as always, the only way to prove 100% that something isn’t what is being suggested you need to find out where the image actually comes from and it was very difficult to trace it.
Everywhere I found this picture it came with the same story, the one I thought was incorrect.
So I shared it with my friends, who are all history obsessed.
Sander van der Ster managed to find the origin of the photo.
The execution is a film scene.
‘Kirmis’ (The Fair) is a West German film from 1960 about a German deserter and a French girl whose tragic story is remembered when a skeleton is found during a fair in a village years after the war.
Here is the execution scene;
Here is another copy, slightly better, on Dailymotion;
If you see the picture shared online with a claim of authenticity, please direct the person posting it to this article.
Picture(s) found online, used for (re-)educational purposes only.
I do not own the copyrights to this picture, I only share it here for educational purposes to try and make sure the real story behind it becomes known and people will stop spreading false information.
If the copyright owner objects to the sharing here, kindly contact me and I shall remove it right away.