Chapter IV

[1] Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (see n. 19)/ Wehrmachtfuehrungsstab, Kriegstagebuch (referred to hereafter as OKW/WFSt, KTB) 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 11 Dec 43; cf. MS # B-283 by Blumentritt, OB WEST (see n. 2) Chief of Staff, who after the war wrote that following the declaration from Moscow and Tehran the German commanders knew that Germany was to be beaten; before that time they still hoped for an agreement with the Western Powers. See, however, later estimates of Allied intentions in Ch. VII, below.

[2] Beurteilung der Lage Ob. West am 25.X.43, 28 Oct 43 (cited hereafter as Rundstedt Report, 25 Oct 43), Oberbefhlshaber West (referred to hereafter as OB West) Ia Nr. 550/43. Oberkommando des Heeres (see n. 19), Generalstab des Heered/Operationsabteilung (referred to hereafter as OKH/Op.-Abt.), 28 Oct 43. The German term "Oberbefehlshaber West," which may mean either the Commander in chirf or his headquarters, has been rendered as "OB WEST" when it rfers to the headquarters and as "Commander in Chief West" when it refers to the person.

[3] See The Private War Journal of Generaloberst Franz Halder, 22 Jul 40 (trans), MS. History Div files. Cited hereafter as Halder Diary. Halder was Chief of the General Staff of the German Army from 1938 to September 1942.

[4] Halder Diary, 13 Jul 40.

[5] Conf, 20 Jun 40, ONI, Fuehrer Conferences, 1940, Vol. I.

[6] Annex 2, Conf, 25 Jul, Ibid., Vol. II. It was planned to land 90,000 men in the first six days.

[7] Confs, 11 Jul 40 and 13 Aug 40, Ibid., Vols. I and II, respectively. Cf. Halder Diary, 31 Jul 40.

[8] Halder Diary, 26 Jul 40.

[9] Ibid., 31 Jul 40. Planning proceeded fitfully for an alliance with Spain and the seizure of Gibraltar.

[10] Halder Diary, 31 Jul 40.

[11] Ibid., 17 Aug 40.

[12] Memo, Heeresaufbau auf 180 Divisionen, 10 Sep 40, OKW/Wehrmachtfuehrungsamt, Abteilung Landesverteidigung, Gruppe II, Nr. 1650/40. Translation found in German Manpower, MS. Hist Div files. This is a study by German Military Documents Section, WD G-2, prepared in 1946 from original German records.

[13] Order, Oberbefehlshaber West, 26 Oct 40, Oberbefehlshaber des Heeres (referred to hereafter as Ob.d.H.). OKH/Op.Abt., Befehlsbefugnisse 30.V.40-2.II.42.

[14] Halder Diary, 30 Jul 40.

[15] Ibid., 26 Jul 40.

[16] Order, Aufgaben und Gliederung im Westen ab Oktober 1940, 17 Oct 40. Heeresgruppe A, KTB 25.-VI.-17.X.40, Anlagen, Teil III.

[17] Heeresgruppe A, KTB West, 1.I.-13.IV.41.

[18] Interpretation of Warlimont (see n. 52) in Geschichte des Oberbefehlshaber West, edited by Generalleutnant Bodo Zimmermann (Ia (G-3) of OB WEST). This is a million-word manuscript prepared in part by Zimmermann, in part by generals and general staff officers associated with OB WEST, OKW, OKL (Oberkommando der Kriegsmarine), and various subordinate commands. It was written under the auspices of the Historical Division of the U.S. War Department between 1946 and 1948. Cited hereafter as MS # T-121 (Zimmermann et al.).

[19] Oberkommando des Heeres. Until December 1941 this was the headquarters and staff for Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch, Commander in Chief of the Army. At that time Hitler took direct command of the Army and OKH was directly subordinated to him. In addition it was nominally subordinate for certain purposes to the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW, Armed Forces High Command).

[20] MS # Y-121 (Zimmerman et all.).

[21] Officer's Personnel Files, Field Marshal von Rundstedt. OKH/Heeres-Personalamt, Personalakten. Witzleben was put in the OKH Fuehrer Reserve, that is, in a pool of officers unassigned burt on active duty and available for service. Rundstedt's appointment as Commander in Chief West was "acting" as of 8 March and was made permanent on 1 May 1942.

[22] Translation of Fuehrer Directive No. 40 is reproduced below as Appendix C.

[23] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.I.-31.III.43, 2-3 Jan 43; Recapitulation of Fuehrer Directives establishing OKW Theaters, 28 May 42, OKW/WFSt, Quartiermeister im WFSt. Wehrmachtbefehlshaber Suedost (A.O.K. 12) Taetigkeitsbericht and Anlagen, VI.42. See also The German High Command, a study by German Military Documents Section, WD G-2, 1946, MS. Hist Div files.

[24] See the Navy's complaint to Hitler on 13 April 1942 that there was no high-ranking naval officer on the Armed Forces High Command (OKW) and that strategy was suffering thereby. Annex 8, Conf, 13 Ap 42, ONI, Fuehrer Conferences, 1942. What the Navy asked for (and apparently got) was not representation on OKW but a flag officer to provide liaison at the Fuehrer Headqurters. This underlined the fact that such co-ordination between the services as existed operated on a personal basis through Hitler and not through any formal joint organization. Part of the Navy's protest was directed at the very efficeint liaison which Goering had established at the Fuehrer Headquarters for the Luftwaffe, although the Luftwaffe was actually no better represented on OKW than the Navy.

[25] Memo, Standpunkt Heer und OKW, betreffend Denkschrift des Oberbefehlshaber des Heeres ueber Organisation der Wehrmachtfuehrung (7.III.38), 22 Mar 38. OKW file 1866; cf. MS # C-045 (Natzmer et al.), a postwar study of the historical evolution of OKH, which clearly describes the German Army's opposition to any unification of the services as co-equal participants.

[26] The organizational structure and evolution of OKW and OKH have been described in great detail by committees of German officers working under the auspices of the Historical Division between 1946 and 1948. See MSS # T-101, The German Armed Forces High Command (Winter et al.) and # T-111, The German Army High Command (Halder et al.).

[27] The only instance of a joint staff was Gruppe XXI, formed in early 1940 by upgrading the XXI Corps. Under the command of General der Infanterie Nikolaus von Falkenhorst, it was charged with the preparation and conduct of the Scandinavian campaign in 1940. Gruppe XXI, KTB 20.II.-8.IV.40.

[28] Fuehrer Directive No. 40. See below, Appendix C.

[29] Officer's Personnel Files, Generaloberst Kurt Zeitzler. OKH/Heeres-Personalamt, Personalakten. Still later Zeitzler was implicated in the 20 July 1944 conspiracy against Hitler and dismissed.

[30] Conf, 13 Apr 42, ONI, Fuehrer Conferences, 1942.

[31] Memo, Aktennotiz ueber Fuehrerbesprechung am 2.VIII.42 im Fuehrerhauptquartier, 3 Aug 42, General der Pioniere und Festungen b.Ob.d.H. OKH/Op.Abt., Kuestenschutz 20.VI.42-18.V.44.

[32] Fuehrerrede zum Ausbau des Atlantik-Walles am 29.IX.42, 3 Oct 42. OKH/Op. Abt., Kuestenschultz Kanalkueste 20.VI.42-18.V.44.

[33] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 31 Oct 43.

[34] Term generally coinciding with the sector of Fifteenth Army. It includes the Pas-de-Calais area and the Somme-Seine coast.

[35] MS # B-234 (Generalleutnant Max Pemsel, CofS Seventh Army).

[36] Schematsche Kriegsgliederung, 1 May 43. OKH/Op.Abt.; see also Rundstedt Report, 25 Oct 43.

[37] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.VII-31.VIII.43, 14 Jul 43, referring to conference of 28 June. The term, "V-1," recommended by Reich Minister Josef Paul Goebbels and approved by Hitler, was adopted as "an instrument of propaganda" by directive of OKW: "The V used in this designation is . . . to counteract the enemy's usage of this letter (Victory), and the numeral 1 is to point toward other possible means of stepping up this type of warfare by remote control against England." Seekriegsleitung/1.Abt., KTB 1.-30.VI.44, 25 Jun 44.

[38] MS # T-121 (Zimmermann et al.). See below, Ch. X.

[39] MS # T-121.

[40] Rundstedt Report, 25 Oct 43.

[41] Note that this compared to an average sector on the Russian front of 32.5 miles to a corps. OKH, Generalstab des Heeres (cited hereafter as OKH, Gen.St.d.H.) /Organisationsabteilung, KTB Anlagen, 1943.

[42] Ltr, OB WEST to OKH/Op.Abt., 19 Dec 41, OKH/OP.Abt., Gliederung West, Bd. IV, 9.VIII.41-4.I.42.

[43] MS # B-672 (Generalmajor Horst Freiherr Treusch v. Buttlar-Brandenfels (OKW)). This is a commentary on Zimmermann's preliminary narrative of OB WEST (MS # B-308).

[44] Grundlegender Befehl des Oberbefehlshabers West Nr. 3, Aufgaben der Ost-Divisionen, 10 May 42. OKW/WFSt, 1. Generalstabsoffizier Heer (referred to hereafter as OKW/WFSt, Op. (H)), Grundlegende Befehle West 22.X.42-7.V.44.

[45] Various papers in Austausch Ost-West, 1.IX.42-28.II.44, OKH/Op.Abt. A total of 28 infantry divisions, 4 armored divisions, 2 motorized divisions, and 4 smaller units were alerted for service in the east after 1 October 1942.

[46] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43. For figures as of 1 Sep 42, cf. Memo, West-Divisionen, die ab 1.10.42 zur Verlegung in den Osten geeignet sind, 1 Sep 42. OKH/Op.Abt., Austausch Ost-West 1.IX.-42-28.II.44. The panzer and panzer grenadier divisions contained substantially more men than the two-regiment infantry divisions. See below, Ch. VII.

[47] This is approximately the same strength as the maximum build-up of the U.S. Army on the Continent in 1945.

[48] OKH, Gen.St.d.H./Organisationsabteilung (referred to hereafter as OKH/Org. Abt.), KTB Anlagen, 1943.

[49] Memo, Berechnungsunterlagen fuer Schaubild "Zugaenge und Abgaenge des Ostheers vom November 42 bis Oktober 43" (Stand 5.XII.43), 14 Dec 43. OKH/Org.Abt., KTB Anlagen 1.XII.-10.XII.43. German losses (killed, missing, and wounded) from June 1941 to December 1943 totaled 3,726,000, of which 3,513,000 were lost on the Eastern Font. Rpt, Personelle blutige Verluste vom 22.Juni 1941 bis 31.Dezember 1943, 4 Jan 44. OKH/Generalquartiermeister, der Heeresarzt, OKH/Org.Abt., Arzt Meldungen, Monatsmeldungen ab 1.VII.43. The proportions of wounded to total casualties and of seriously wounded to those returnable to duty were almost identical in the U.S. Army. See [John E. Henderson] The Procurement and Use of Manpower in the European Theater (The Administrative and Logistical History of the ETO: Part IX), MS, pp. 84-85. Hist Div files.

[50] Chart, Gesamt Zu- u. Abgaenge des Feldheeres in der Zeit vom 1.VII.43-30.VI.44, 3 Jul 44. OKH / - Org.Abt., KTB Anlagen, 1944.

[51] OKH/Org.Abt., KTB Anlagen, 1.XII.-10.XII.43; OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX-3.XII.43, 3 Nov 43. To this Russian pressure U.S. lend-lease contributed enormously. See Pogue, The Supreme Command.

[52] Warlimont was deputy chief of the Armed Forces Operations Staff (WFSt).

[53] MS # T-121 (Zimmermann et al.).

[54] Armeeoberkommando 7 (referred to hereafter as Seventh Army), KTB IX.-XII.42 and Anlagen; Hoeheres Kommando XXXXV (Armee Felber), Korpsbefehle, Ia 22.III.40-29.IX.42.

[55] A more likely reason was to get troops for the defense of Italy against the Germans and particularly to defend Rome. See Mario Roatta, Otto Milioni di Baionette (Milan, 1943), p. 287.

[56] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.VII.-31.VIII.43, 23-28 Aug 43; First Army, KTB 1.VII.-30.IX.43 and Anlagen; Armeeoberkommando 19 (referred to herafter as Nineteenth Army), KTB 20.VI.-31.XII.43 and Anlagen.

[57] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.VII.-31.VIII.43, 14 Jul 43.

[58] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 11 Sep 43. Total withdrawals for Russia and the Mediterranean up to 1 September 1943 were thus 31 infantry and 16 mobile divisions. The figures given by Rundstedt in his report as of 1 October 1943 were 36 infantry and 17 mobile divisions.

[59] Notes written in August 1943, appended on MS # B-276 (Sodenstern).

[60] German Manpower. MS cited n. 12.

[61] Category I included the active Nazis; II, the passive Nazis who had, however, preserved their Germanic spirit; and IV, those hostile to integration into the German state. See Der Prozess gegen die Hauptkriegsverbrecher vor dem Internationalen Militaergerichtshof (Nuremberg, 1947), III, 653.

[62] WD TM-E # 30-451, Military Intelligence Division, The German Replacement Army (Ersatzheer).

[63] Rundstedt Report, 25 oct 43.

[64] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 25 sept 43.

[65] OKH/Op.Abt., Kraefte Western, Allegemein, Band III, 24.VII.42-1.XI.43.

[66] Kriegsgliederung, 18 May 44. Seventh Army, KTB Anlagen 1.I.-30.VI.44.

[67] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 5 Dec 43.

[68] OKH/Org.Abt., KTB Anlagen, 1943.

[69] Oberstleutnant Hoffmann, Bericht Kampfgruppe von Schlieben 6.-22.VI.44, cited hereafter as Hoffmann Report. Seventh Army, KTB Anlagen 1.I.-30.VI.44. Hoffmann was the commander of the 3d Battalion, 919th Regiment, of the 709th Division. After von Schlieben's forces had been bottled up in Cherbourg in June 1944, Hoffmann escaped by E-boat with orders to report to the Seventh Army. See below, Ch. X.

[70] MS # C-024 (Kraemer). This manuscript by Generalmajor der Waffen-SS Fritz Kraemer, I SS Panzer Corps chiref of staff, represents a minority judgment amoung the views of the German generals reporting after the war on their difficulties. It is accepted here because as an admission contrary to interest it seems to carry more weight that the generally unspecific assertions of other commanders. The gist of the opposing view was that the troopd were not so thoroughly trained as they might have been. But this is a ralative judgement and it is seldom clear what standards the commanders had in mind. For a discussion of certain deficiencies in training and equipment, see below, Ch, VII.

[71] Translation reproduced below as Appendix D.

[72] See below, Ch. VII, for discussion of various types of German divisions.

[73] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 23 Nov, 3 and 11 Dec 43.

[74] With the new title of OB SUEDWEST and Commander, Army Group C. Details of the changes in German command ion Italy will be found in H. M. Smyth, The Sicilian Campaign and the Surrender of italy, a volume now under preparation in this series.

[75] MS # C-069a (Blumentritt); MS # C-069c (Buttlar-Brandenfels); and MS # C-069d (Zimmermann).

[76] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 17 Oct 43 et seq. Rommel actually turned over command in Italy on 21 November. See Karteiblatt, Heeresgruppe B. OKH/Org.Abt.

[77] Rad, Hitler to OKH, Gen.St.d.H., 6 Nov 43. OKH/Org.Abt., Bd. Chefsache 7.V.43-4.II.44; cf. OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 28 Oct and 6 Nov 43.

[78] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 28 Oct 43.

[79] MS # B-672 (Buttlar-Brandenfels).

[80] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 4 Oct 43. This reversed the opinion of a month earlier that, even if the line in Italy were shortened, the troops thereby relieved would have to be used in the Balkans. Ibid., 8 Sep 43.

[81] He did not long hold to the principles of counterattack outlined in Directive 51. See MS # B-672 (Buttlar-Brandenfels) and below, Ch. VII.

[82] Grundlegende Bemerkungen des Oberbefehlshabers West Nr. 27, Auswertung weiterer Erfahrungen, 24 Jul 43, and Nr. 28 Erfahrungen und Folgerungen aus den Landungskaempfen von Salerno, 25 Dec 43. OKW/WFSt, Op. (H), Westen, Grundlegende Bemerkugen 4.V.42-27.XII.43.

[83] Rpt, Auszug aus Bericht Generalmajor v. Marnitz, appended to Grundlegende bemerkungen des Oberbefehlshabers West Nr. 28, cited n. 82. Marnitz was director of fortress engineer courses at Engineer School I.

[84] MS # B-466 (Geyr von Schweppenburg). Cf. below, Ch. X.

[85] MS # B-276 (Sodenstern).

[86] Ltr, OB WEST (Ia Nr. 696/43) to OKW/WFSt, 26 Nov 43. Seventh Army, KTB Anlagen, Chefsachen 2.III.43-1.VIII.44.

[87] Rad, OB WEST to OKW/WFSt, 14 Nov. 43. Seventh Army, KTB Anlagen, Chefsachen 2.III.43-1.VIII.44. At the time Rundstdt made this propsal he was not sure of getting the reserve army group headquarters. If he did not, he expected to employ simply an army command. See Order, OB WEST to army commanders, Vorbereitung fuer den Kampf, 18 Nov 43. OKH/Org.Abt., Bd. Chefsachen 7.V.43-4.II.44. In place of the reserve panzer corps a special armored staff was later created. See below, Ch. VII.

[88] OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.IX.-31.XII.43, 15 Nov 43.

[89] Ltr, Salmuth to OB WEST with personal covering letter to Rundstedt, 25 Dec 43. Fifteenth Army, KTB Anlagen, Chefsachen 26.X.-27.XII.43.

[90] Ltr, Rundstedt to Salmuth, 27 Dec 43. Fifteenth Army, KTB Anlagen, Chefsachen 26.X.-27.XII.43.

[91] MS # B-276 (Sodenstern).

[92] Grundlegender Befehl des Oberbefehlshabers West Nr. 20, Grundsaetze fuer die Fuehrung der Kuestenverteidigung, 18 Dec 42. OKW/WFSt, Op. (H), Westen, Grundlegende Befehle 22.X.42-7.V.44.

[93] MS # B-672 (Buttlar-Brandenfels).

[94] Ltrs, OB WEST to OKW/WFSt, 2 Apr 43 and 27 Jun 43. OKH/Op.Abt., Kuestenschutz Kanalkueste 20.VI.42-18.V.44; OKW/WFSt, KTB 1.VII.-31.VIII.43, 11 Jul 43.

[95] Grundlegende Bemerkungen des Oberbefehlshabers West Nr. 26, 6 Jun 43. OKW/WFSt, Op. (H), Westen, Grundlegende Bemerkungen 4.V.42-27.XII.-43.

[96] Rundstedt could thus find himself in nearly perfect agreement with both Salmuth and Geyr, whose respective tactical concepts were wholly opposed. See MS # B-466 (Geyr von Schweppenburg); cf. MS # B-720 (Generalleutnant Dr. Hans Speidel, CofS, Army Group B).

[97] Ltr, CofS, OB WEST, to subordinate armies, 10 Jan 44. Seventh Army, KTB Anlagen, Chefsachen 2.III.43-I.VIII.44.

[98] See below, Ch. VII.

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