This Einsatzkommando was headed by SS officer Walter Rauff and according to his wikipedia article it had great effect on the local Jewish population. An example is given, a quote from a German TV documentary:

"More than 2,500 Tunisian Jews died in a network of SS slave labour camps before the Germans withdrew. Rauff's men also stole jewels, silver, gold and religious artifacts from the Tunisian Jews. Forty-three kilogrammes of gold were taken from the Jewish community on the island of Djerba alone"

Is there further evidence of their actions in North Africa, or the extent of other anti-jewish efforts carried out in North Africa?

Rommel had apparently promised his cooperation with Einsatzgruppe Egypt. This was a small force that, presumably with the cooperation of Africa Corp troops given the Einsatzgruppe's small size, would have massacred around Palestine had the war gone better for Germany. source, wiki. Is there any evidence of this type of cooperation in Tunis (between army units, army command and the Einsatzkommando)?


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Concerning your first question - the extent of Einsatzkommando Tunis' actions and evidence for it:

The rules governing their actions were effectively identical to the rules for the Einsatzgruppen in the Soviet Union p. 138, Mallman and Cüppers.

There was a meeting between Rauff and the Wehrmacht where they agreed to use Jewish forced laborers to fortify the frontlines p. 204, Mallman and Cüppers. The source quoted for this is the war diary of Pz. AOK 5, which wasn't Rommels general staff.

Einsatzkommando Tunis stayed in Northern Africa for about 5 months. During that time "they were mainly busy registering Jews, exploiting them, terrorize them, and force them to comprehensive forced labor for the Axis powers. Even if mass murder did not happen, Rauff and the rest of the German occupation hierarchy set up a true reign of terror" p. 207, Mallman and Cüppers.

I found no mention of “more than 2500 deaths in slave labor camps“.

With regards to your other question - Rommels alleged promise to cooperate:

That accusation is probably false. Rommel and Rauff most likely didn't meet personally, since during Rauffs visit to Tobruk in July 1942 Rommel was leading his troops in the decisive phase of the First Battle of El Alamein, 500 kilometers to the east of Tobruk. Rauff probably put himself under the command of one of the staff officers of Panzerarmee Afrika (PzAA). There is no conversation note however, reason could be a priority in reports about the combat at El Alamein. Possibly important staff intelligence and quartermaster documents of PzAA from those days are missing. p. 138, Mallman and Cüppers

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    According to Wikipedia the information on 2500 dead is from "Tony Paterson, "'Chivalrous' Rommel wanted to bring Holocaust to Middle East", The Independent (London), May 25, 2007, reporting on a two-part documentary series then being broadcast on Germany's ZDF television channel, entitled Rommels Krieg, Rommels Schatz authored by Jörg Müllner and Jean-Christoph Caron". So it would not necessarily appear in the Mallmann/Cüppers Book.
    – user3769
    Commented Feb 24, 2015 at 9:28
  • The headline of Tony Paterson's article Tony Paterson, "'Chivalrous' Rommel wanted to bring Holocaust to Middle East" is not backed up by evidence in the Mallmann and Cüppers book, because it expresses intent that is not documented for Rommel to my knowledge.
    – jjack
    Commented Feb 24, 2015 at 12:05
  • In an article for "Der Spiegel" link Jean-Christoph Caron, one of the producers of the ZDF documentary, writes that "regarding all that historians know today, (Rommel) had no direct responsibility in the theft of gold through the SS in Tunisia".
    – jjack
    Commented Feb 24, 2015 at 12:05
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    Your strong feelings are a bit wasted on me - I wasn't discussing the history, merely pointing out that the number does not seem to come from the book you mentioned but from a TV documentation (by Guido Knopp who has a tendency of connecting vaguely related facts into sensational stories, so I would agree with you that this is not a reliable source).
    – user3769
    Commented Feb 24, 2015 at 17:08
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    No strong feelings here, I just had to split up my answer into three separate comments because it was too long for a single comment block. I don't know how the TV documentation turned out, but the article by J.-P. Caron in the newsmagazine is pretty good.
    – jjack
    Commented Feb 24, 2015 at 17:15

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