Thursday, June 23, 2016
From that prior blog entry:
"General George S. Patton from the era of the Second World War [WW2] as perceived by the German senior military commander as an able, competent and good commander of armor but nothing more than that. NO better than dozens of German Wehrmacht tank commanders of similar rank and responsibility."
Here they are. Those German officers of flag rank whose command performance during WW2 either equaled or exceeded that of George Patton. The proverbial "bushel" of then some to be more accurate.
Particular emphasis in this case to those general officers who commanded armored formations [panzer] and exemplars of "mechanized maneuver". Practitioners of tank warfare!
"The Best Commanders in the German Wehrmacht of WWII; Part 1"
* Von Manstein. "Manstein was the German strategist extraordinaire, who brilliantly tweaked the old Schlieffen Plan for a German attack on France by funneling Germany’s panzer arm through the Ardennes Forest and then racing them onward to the English Channel. The complete destruction of the French Army in less than six weeks of battle confirmed Manstein’s standing as one of the premier, operational strategists in the infant field of mechanized maneuver warfare"
* Guderian. "He was one of the great innovators in mechanized maneuver warfare who pioneered the breakthroughs in multiple-arms operations by integrating the stunning new developments in modern tank warfare with the enhancements of attack aircraft in the tactical role."
* Rommel. "He was one of the great innovators in mechanized maneuver warfare who pioneered the breakthroughs in multiple-arms operations by integrating the stunning new developments in modern tank warfare with the enhancements of attack aircraft in the tactical role."
* Model. "excelled at both offensive and defensive warfare and he was a master of improvisation; often overcoming enormous operational adversities to persevere through the most intolerable challenges. In the beginning of the war it was on the offensive where his youthful talents were first recognized, in leading the 3rd Panzer Division as part of Gen. Heinz Guderian’s illustrious panzer advance through Byelorussia and the Ukraine."
* Von Kleist. "He was the senior general in charge of Germany’s panzer arm during their audacious attack across Western Europe in 1940. Because of that success he was assigned to lead one of the four panzer armies designated for Operation Barbarossa."
* Von Manteuffel. "He was one of the most outstanding panzer commanders in the Second World War and inherited a dazzling array of debilitating wounds and permanent scars to show for his courageous skills in leading tank forces during the heat of battle."
* Von Strachwitz. "Out of all Germany’s ace panzer commanders in the Second World War none could match the exemplary record of Graf von Strachwitz. The 'Armored Count;”
"The Best Commanders in the German Wehrmacht of WWII; Part II"
* Hube "oversaw the formation of the 16th Panzer Division from scratch, during the run-up to Operation Barbarossa and then gallantly led it through one of the most harrowing but distinguished advances of all the tank formations in Germany’s Army Group South."
* Hoth. one of the German Army’s most acclaimed panzer commanders. He led the XV Motorized Corps during the German invasions of Poland and France, supervising the celebrated exploits of Rommel’s 7th Panzer Division and administering the decisive blow which destroyed the Polish Army. During Operation Barbarossa Hoth led the 3rd Panzer Group in one of the most renowned armored advances of the Second World War. His group assisted in orchestrating three of the most legendary enemy encirclements in military history"
* Von Balck. "In the case of German panzer general Hermann Balck that distinguished performance came at the height of one of the German Army’s most desperate moments on the Eastern Front."
* Von Saucken. "His cavalry beginnings made him a natural candidate for transition to the panzer arm, which he eagerly upheld in commanding the 4th Motorized Infantry Brigade during the invasions of France and Greece."
* Harpe. "became one of the foremost advocates of mechanized maneuver warfare. Along with Gen. Heinz Guderian, Harpe was one of the army’s expert, conceptual strategists in blitzkrieg operations."
* Neuring. "Was another great tactician in the field of mechanized maneuver warfare who was compelled to utilize his inherent, offensive skills more in a defensive role to delay the inevitable collapse of German resistance on the Eastern Front. But he did this with unceasing regularity in the tumultuous final year of the war and forced the Red Army to pay a heavy price for their numerous battlefield victories."
* Von Mackensen. "the younger [Mackensen the Younger as not be confused with his father from WW1 fame Mackensen the Elder] more than held his own by managing to carve out a rather successful track record in Germany’s panzer arm,"
* Von Vietinghof. "He was also a quite able panzer leader; serving as a corps commander in Gen. Heinz Guderian’s dynamic romp across Byelorussia during Operation Barbarossa"
* Lemelsen. "Another distinguished panzer commander who fought with Guderian’s 2nd Panzer Group during Operation Barbarossa."
* Hans Reinhardt. "Was another steady German general whose service was considered too invaluable to do without. Reinhardt led the 3rd Panzer Army for much of the war on the Eastern Front"
German commanders their performance superior both on the offensive [early stages of the war] and also on the defensive [latter stages of the war]. Patton never on the defensive or having to conduct a retrograde operation it should be noted.