Thirty-six Serb civilians visit Gerhard Gronefeld sometimes as he sleeps. He photographed them, just before they were hanged or shot to death by a German army unit in 1941.
On those haunted nights, waking him in terror, is his memory of the pleading eyes of the Serb victims - 35 men and one woman."Those eyes, those eyes. They will never give me peace," says the 85-year-old Gronefeld, who went from battle to battle across Europe as a propaganda photographer in the German armed forces.
Eleven of his photographs of the reprisal massacre in Pancevo, Serbia, are part of a traveling exhibit that documents atrocities committed in the Balkans and the Soviet Union by Germany's regular armed forces, the Wehrmacht.
The exhibit has caused a furor during its current stop in Munich. The governing conservative party of Bavaria state calls it an insult to the Wehrmacht. Leftist politicians retort that critics of the exhibit are trying to gloss over history. And about 5,000 neo-Nazis marched through Munich on March 1 to protest the display.
The exhibit confronts Germans with a fact many would rather not admit: Ordinary soldiers, not just special units like the Nazi SS elite guard, killed Jews and other civilians.
Of hundreds of photos in the Wehrmacht exhibit, only Gronefeld's were taken by a professional photographer assigned to the Wehrmacht. The German army destroyed most evidence of its involvement in the Holocaust and other atrocities.
Suspecting that his photos of the killings would likely be destroyed, Gronefeld never turned them over to his superiors. Nor was he asked for the photos.Comment on this story
Gronefeld says he kept the pictures because he wanted to some day tell the world what happened at Pancevo.
Gronefeld says he did not like Hitler or his ideas and refused to join the Nazi party. But he willingly took photos for the Wehrmacht after he was drafted into a propaganda unit in 1940.
"I never saw myself as a soldier, but as a photographer. I didn't even know how to shoot a gun," says Gronefeld, who is now confined to a wheelchair.
After the war, Gronefeld did freelance work for German publications and for foreign magazines such as Life and Look.