Greek 9 mm Mauser by DWM

I wanted to share this great picture showing a member of the Greek security police (Asfaleias) armed with a Steyr-Solothurn MP34 and stepping on a box of Greek contract 9 mm Mauser cartridges made by DWM in 1939!!!

Also, I wanted to discuss about the explanation of the “Υ Α” initials found in 9 mm Mauser rounds by DWM and EPK. As you may know from the great article written by John Moss (see IAA 424 p. 15), these letters has been interpreted as “Ypourgion Asfalias” (Ministry of Security)".

However, the correct name of the organization created during the 4th of August Regime (1936–1941) was “Deputy Ministry of Public Security” and was leaded by Konstantinos Maniadakis. Note that the correct Greek name is Υφυπουργείον Δημόσιας Ασφαλείας (Yfypourgeion Demosias Asfaleias / Deputy Ministry of Public Security) and not Υπουργείο Δημόσιας Ασφάλειας (Ypourgeio Demosias Asfaleias / Ministry of Public Security).

Below you can see a letter heading used by this organization in 1938.

Βασιλείου της Ελλάδα
Υφυπουργείον Δημόσιας Ασφαλείας

Kingdom of Greece
Deputy Ministry Public Security



Fede - the Steyr 34 in 9 mm Mauser caliber was used almost exclusively by the Motorized Police (forget the official name and no time to look it up). They actually have a Museum in Greece, and at my request, Dimi Goulas looked them up. They even had a MP34 with the initials “YA” stamped in the stock. The interpretation of the letters “YA” came from that Museum, through Dimi, a native speaker of the Greek language.

I cannot explain the difference, except to say that sometimes initials are real abbreviations and do not represent the full name of things. The common intials for the city of San Francisco are S.F., but the actual full name of the city is San Francisco de Assisi. L.A. are well known abbreviations for that unfortunate mess in Southern California, but as I recall the full name of the city is La Ciudad de la Reina de Los Angeles.

Your information is, however, interesting. I notice that if you remove the middle word for the two forms of the name you mention, you are left with “Y A” in both cases. I would think that might be significant. Myself, I don’t speak a word of Greek, so cannot comment on what form might have been specified for use as ID on ammo and firearms by the Mechanized Police. By the way, they were disbanded once the German invasion suceeded, and were never re-established after the War.

I wish I had had those pictures for that article. Really nice. I will try to isolate and save them for my 9 x 25 mm file. Thanks for posting them and the other information. I wish I knew the ins and outs of the Greek language well enough (well enough? I wish I knew them at all!!!) to reconcile the differences in the names from what Dimi told me about what the Greek Museum had told him.

Have either of you gentlemen seen a box label for this ammunition?


Dave, I have never seen a box label for either the DWM “YA” ammo or the ENK “YA” ammo made in Greece in the early 40s. It is very hard to tell, but it looks like that DWM crate in the picture of the Greek Police Officer has a tin liner, and I see something that could be cartridges in a clip inside the case. Possible the ammo was shipped without the smaller boxes, I suppose, but equally possible that the particular case shown had the ammo stripped out of the boxes for convenience of use, or that what I (think) am seeing are not the cartridges at all.

Of course, we see very few Greek auto pistol caliber boxes regardless of caliber, from that era. I think I have the sum total of one in my box collection.