The Ordnungspolizei (Order Police) or Orpo, were the uniformed Police Force in Nazi Germany between 1936 and 1945. The Orpo organization was absorbed into the Nazi monopoly on power after regional police jurisdiction was removed in favor of the central Nazi government. The Orpo was under the administration of the Interior Ministry, but headed by members of the Schutzstaffel (SS) until the end of WWII. Owing to their green uniforms, Orpo were also referred to as Grüne Polizei (green police). The force was first established as a centralized organisation uniting the municipal, city, and rural uniformed police that had been organised on a state-by-state basis. The Ordnungspolizei encompassed virtually all of Nazi Germany's law-enforcement and emergency response organizations, including fire brigades, coast guard, and civil defense. In the prewar period, Reichsfuhrer-SS Heninrich Himmler and Kurt daluege, chief of the Order Police, cooperated in transforming the police force of the Weimar Republic into militarised formations ready to serve the regime's aims of conquest and racial annihilation. Police troops were first formed into Battalion sized formations for the invasion of Poland, where they were deployed for security and policing purposes, also taking part in executions and mass deportations. During WWII, the force had the task of policing the civilian population of the conquered and colonized countries beginning in spring 1940.[4] Orpo's activities escalated to genocide with the invasion of the Soviet Union, Operation Barbarossa. Twenty-three police battalions, formed into independent regiments or attached to Wehrmacht Security Divisions and Einsatzgruppen, perpetrated mass murder in the Holocaust and were responsible for widespread crimes against humanity targeting the civilian population.

    By the start of the Second World War in 1939, the SS had effectively gained complete operational control over the German Police, although outwardly the SS and Police still functioned as separate entities. The Ordnungspolizei maintained its own system of insignia and Orpo ranks as well as distinctive police uniforms. Under an SS directive known as the "Rank Parity Decree", policemen were highly encouraged to join the SS and, for those who did so, a special police insignia known as the SS membership runes for Order Police was worn on the breast pocket of the police uniform.

    In 1940, standard practice in the German Police was to grant equivalent SS rank to all police generals. Police generals who were members of the SS were referred to simultaneously by both rank titles - for instance, a Generalleutnant in the Police who was also an SS member would be referred to as SS Gruppenführer und Generalleutnant der Polizei. In 1942, SS membership became mandatory for police generals, with SS collar insignia (overlaid on police green backing) worn by all police officers ranked Generalmajor and above.

    The distinction between the police and the SS had virtually disappeared by 1943 with the creation of the SS and Police Regiments, which were consolidated from earlier police security battalions. SS officers now routinely commanded police troops and police generals serving in command of military troops were granted equivalent SS rank in the Waffen-SS. In August 1944, when Himmler was appointed Chef des Ersatzheeres (Chief of the Home Army), all police generals automatically were granted Waffen-SS rank because they had authority over the prisoner of war camps.

    Himmler's ultimate aim was to replace the regular police forces of Germany with a combined racial/state protection corps (Staatsschutzkorps) of pure SS units. Local law enforcement would be undertaken by the Allgemeine SS with the Waffen-SS providing homeland-security and political-police functions.


    Recently purchased in a private collection in Melbourne is this private purchase tunic to a Major in the SS Police. Blue Grey-Police colour with a green collar. SS eagle machine stitched to left sleeve  SS collar tabs to the rank of Major machine stitched to the collar. Epaulets have been removed at some stage. Some minor mothing and field repairs as shown in images. Iron Cross second class ribbon and Spange attached to the second button hole with a seven medal ribbon bar over the left pocket. This is a nice, rarely seen, SS Police Officers tunic at an affordable price, add a pair of original SS Majors shoulder boards and add thousands to its value.