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Old 12-14-2015, 09:23 PM
 
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https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=P_lgnvAYea4

Here is an interesting clip of Hitler's best generals being promoted to Field Marshal after the defeat of France.

Last edited by jobseeker2013; 12-14-2015 at 10:17 PM.. Reason: Misspelled
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Old 12-15-2015, 05:57 AM
 
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I think that it's more interesting to note that by promoting twelve generals to field marshal, Hitler was actually diluting the honor of the rank. Previously, conferring the rank of field marshal was a rare event, and the man receiving the honor was elevated above all other German officers. Giving out the batons to so many generals at once meant that field marshals had become a dime a dozen, diluting the honor and respect usually conferred. At the same time, Hitler resurrected from over 800 years previous the higher rank of the Marshal of the Reich and assigned it to his crony Herman Goring, further diminishing the rank of field marshal.

While the boys over at Stormfront might get a tingle up their collective legs over this clip, Hitler was proactively preventing the rise from the German officer corps of a possible rival to his leadership of the Reich.
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Old 12-15-2015, 07:07 AM
 
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
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Originally Posted by djmilf View Post
I think that it's more interesting to note that by promoting twelve generals to field marshal, Hitler was actually diluting the honor of the rank. Previously, conferring the rank of field marshal was a rare event, and the man receiving the honor was elevated above all other German officers. Giving out the batons to so many generals at once meant that field marshals had become a dime a dozen, diluting the honor and respect usually conferred.
I don't know how diluted it really was, considering the enormous expansion of the military under Hitler. After all, there were vastly more generals and colonels and majors (or whatever their German equivalents are/were) as well in 1940 compared to 1933, just due to the building up of the armed forces.

This is what one would expect. The same thing happened in the United States. The West Point graduates of '15 are known as the class the stars fell on, because over a third of the graduating earned at least one star (or, became a general officer). It wasn't that this was the best group of leaders that West Point ever produced, but the fact that 25 years after that class graduated - about the time an officer could be expecting to become a general - there was huge expansion of the United States Army and thus of slots for generals.

And it's no coincidence that most of the five-star officers of the American military (generals and admirals) attained that rank during World War II.
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Old 12-15-2015, 01:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Unsettomati View Post
I don't know how diluted it really was... The same thing happened in the United States....And it's no coincidence that most of the five-star officers of the American military (generals and admirals) attained that rank during World War II.


I don't know about that my friend...

Under Hitler 26 men served at the rank of Field Marshall while only four American's attained that rank during the war. In the U.S. military rank is commensurate with the size and strength of the unit they command and the rank of the respective unit commanders. In Germany and to a certain degree the rank of Field Marshall appears to be equal part command status and honorary appointment. Take for example of Hitler's promotion of General Paulus to Field Marshal for no other reason than to bribe him into not surrendering at Stalingrad despite the fact that his command the 6th Army had been reduced to a mere division.
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Old 12-16-2015, 05:23 PM
 
Location: Old Mother Idaho
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Originally Posted by Unsettomati View Post
I don't know how diluted it really was, considering the enormous expansion of the military under Hitler. After all, there were vastly more generals and colonels and majors (or whatever their German equivalents are/were) as well in 1940 compared to 1933, just due to the building up of the armed forces.

This is what one would expect. The same thing happened in the United States. The West Point graduates of '15 are known as the class the stars fell on, because over a third of the graduating earned at least one star (or, became a general officer). It wasn't that this was the best group of leaders that West Point ever produced, but the fact that 25 years after that class graduated - about the time an officer could be expecting to become a general - there was huge expansion of the United States Army and thus of slots for generals.

And it's no coincidence that most of the five-star officers of the American military (generals and admirals) attained that rank during World War II.
Hitler appoint a lot more than any of the Allies. The U.S. had 4 Admirals, 4 Generals, and 1 Air Force General (the first and only).

The Japanese only had 5 from 1932 to 1944, and 4 Admirals in the same period.

I tend to agree that Hitler diluted his most senior corps… in comparison to the Allied armies, particularly the Americans, the officer ranks had far more members than the German officer corps.

The German officer corps also suffered the highest number of casualties of any group in the European war. Their loss of field officers was 15 to 1 compared to their enlisted non-coms. Although the German command structure remained intact to the very end, I think their forces would have been much better served by avoiding the top-heavy command structure Hitler created for himself.

Hitler thought he was the greatest war strategist of them all, and made sure his most senior staff were all yes-men as the war progressed. Allowing too many combat veterans into senior command was a threat to Hitler from his earliest days, when Rohm, an officer and a highly decorated vet, was the commander of the SA, the paramilitary arm of the Nazi party. Rohm was also one of the original party founders, not Hitler.

As Hitler maneuvered his way into complete governmental power, he knew early on that his only real competition in the Nazi party was Rohm. Rohm is the reason why Hitler created the SS, is own little army who he commanded, not Rohm, and the reason he killed off the SA commanders and executed Rohm in the Night of the Long Knives.
Rohm could have seized and executed Hitler at any time up until then. Hitler made a point of befriending Rohm very early after becoming a Nazi, and was kind of like Rove was to GW- he made Rohm look smarter and better than he was just to keep control over him until his threat was too strong to manage any more.

But unlike Rove, he never really admired the man. He just used him for his own purposes, just as he did with his Generals. Like Stalin, Hitler killed all his good Generals as soon as they conflicted with his drive for complete domination of his nation.
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