World War 2 Generals – Von L thru Vz / Weltkrieg 2 Generäle – Von L durch Vz

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Kurt Freiherr von Liebenstein

Kurt Freiherr von Liebenstein, 28 February 1899 – 3 August 1975, was a general in the Wehrmacht of Nazi Germany during World War II.

On 10 May 1943, he was decorated with the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. Three days later, while commanding the 164th Infantry Division, he surrendered to the British forces in Tunisia, with the 164th Infantry earning the distinction of being the last major German formation in North Africa to lay down its arms. He was sent to Trent Park, a special camp for generals north of London. In 1955, he joined the Bundeswehr. In 1960, he retired as Generalmajor.

Smilo Freiherr von Lüttwitz

Smilo Walther Hinko Oskar Constantin Wilhelm Freiherr von Lüttwitz(23 December 1895 – 19 May 1975) was a German general of the Panzer troops, serving during World War II and son of Walther von Lüttwitz. His cousins Heinrich von Lüttwitz and Hyazinth Graf Strachwitz von Gross-Zauche und Camminetz were also decorated with the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords, the latter also received the decoration “with Diamonds”. After World War II he joined the Bundeswehr on 1 June 1957 and retired on 31 December 1960.

Kurt-Jürgen Freiherr von Lützow

Kurt-Jürgen Freiherr von Lützow (7 August 1892 – 20 July 1961) was a German general during World War II and recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, awarded by Nazi Germany for successful military leadership.

Lützow was born near Marienwerder. He surrendered to the Red Army in the course of the Soviet 1944 Operation Bagration in an encirclement near Bobruisk. In Moscow on 29 June 1950, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison for war crimes. In January 1956, he was released from prison and repatriated.

Friedrich von Mellenthin

Friedrich Wilhelm von Mellenthin (30 August 1904 – 28 June 1997) was a Generalmajor in the German Army during World War II. A participant in most of the major campaigns of the war, he became well-known afterwards for his memoirs Panzer Battles, first published in 1956 and regularly reprinted since then.

Dietrich von Müller

Dietrich von Müller (16 September 1891 – 3 January 1961) was a German Officer during both World War I and World War II. Just before the end of World War II he was promoted to Generalleutnant and awarded the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves and Swords was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. On 19 April 1945 he was captured by members of 1st Czechoslovak Partisan Brigade of Jan Žižka, Group Olga, and became a prisoner of war. He later spent 10 years in Soviet captivity. He was released in the winter of 1955.

Hans von Obstfelder

Hans von Obstfelder (6 September 1886 – 20 December 1976) was a German general of infantry, serving during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords. The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves and Swords was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership.

Hermann von Oppeln-Bronikowski

Hermann von Oppeln-Bronikowski, 2 January 1899 – 19 September 1966, was a Gold Medal Winning Olympic equestrian and German general during World WII. He commanded the 20th Panzer Division and was awarded the Knights Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords.

He fought during World War I as a cavalry officer and World War II as a panzer officer. At the 1936 Summer Olympics, he won the Gold Medal in the team Dressage. In World War II, he acquired a reputation as a bold tank commander, especially in the Eastern Front front when he had 39 tanks left of 104 available at the start of the battle but kept fighting until the front stabilized. From 6 December 1942 to 5 January 1943, his Kampfgruppe (Battle Group) destroyed no less than 451 Russian tanks, 209 guns, and 752 heavy weapons. During the battle for Caen, he managed to keep his position for 32 days, without losing even one meter of ground but lost 50% of his tank forces. In the last months of the war, he fought fiercely for a narrow corridor to the fortress of Breslau. Then he freed the besieged 1200 soldiers of the Fort of Bautzen and countered all enemy attacks well after he arrived at Spremberg. He only surrendered to the American forces on 18 May 1945, ten days after the war ended in Europe. Months later, the Allies found out he was the defender of Caen and was accused as a war criminal. Classified in the category of “completely innocent”, he was released in 1947.

In the post-war period, he worked as a civilian advisor and helped with setting up of the German Bundeswehr. He also worked for the Canadians as a riding instructor at the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. He was the recipient of the Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub und Schwertern (Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords), of which only 159 members of the Wehrmacht received it.

Ralph Graf von Oriola

Ralph Graf von Oriola (9 August 1895 – 28 April 1970) was a German general in the Wehrmacht during World War II who commanded the XIII. Armeekorps. He was a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross of Nazi Germany.

Enno von Rintelen

Enno Emil Rintelen (November 6, 1891 in Stettin, August 7, 1971 in Heidelberg) was a German officer , last general of the infantry during World War II .

Edwin Graf von Rothkirch und Trach

Edwin Graf of Rothkirch and Trach (1 November 1888 in Militsch , Silesia ;29. July 1980 on the Rettershof in Kelkheim am Taunus) was a German officer , last cavalry general during World War II . As a jumping rider he participated in the Olympic Summer Games in Los Angeles in 1932 .

Hans von Salmuth

Hans Eberhard Kurt von Salmuth (11 November 1888 – 1 January 1962) was a German general during World War II. A lifelong professional soldier, he served his country as a junior officer in World War I, a staff officer in the inter-war period and early World War II, and an army level commander. General von Salmuth commanded several different armies on the Eastern Front and his final command was the Fifteenth Army in France during and shortly after the D-Day invasion. After the war he spent five years in prison for war crimes.

Dietrich von Saucken

Friedrich Wilhelm Eduard Kasimir Dietrich von Saucken (16 May 1892 – 27 September 1980) was a general in the German army, the Wehrmacht Heer, during World War II. He was the last of just 27 men to be awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds (German: Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub, Schwertern und Brillanten; Germany awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade, that with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds, during World War II to recognise extreme bravery or successful leadership on the battlefield).

Eugen Ritter von Schobert

Eugen Siegfried Erich Ritter von Schobert (13 March 1883 – 12 September 1941) was a German general who served in World War I and World War II. He died in the Soviet Union when his observation plane crashed in a Soviet minefield.

Viktor von Schwedler

Leopold Thomas Alexander Viktor von Schwedler (18 January 1885 – 30 October 1954) was a German General der Infantrie who commanded an Army corps and a military district during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross. The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross was awarded to recognise extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership.

Schwedler was made commanding general of the IV. Armeekorps following the Blomberg-Fritsch Affair of 1938. He was transferred to the Führerreserve in October 1942. On 1 March 1943 he was appointed commanding general of the Wehrkreis IV (4th Military District) in Dresden a position he held until 31 January 1945. Nevertheless he was still responsible for the measures after the bombing of Dresden on 13 February and 15 February 1945.

Fridolin von Senger und Etterlin

Fridolin Rudolf Theodor, Ritter und Edler von Senger und Etterlin (September 4, 1891 – January 9, 1963) was a German general during World War II.

Walther von Seydlitz-Kurzbach

Walther Kurt von Seydlitz-Kurzbach, 22. August 1888 – 28 April 1976, was a general in the Wehrmacht of Nazi Germany during World War II. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves. Seydlitz-Kurzbach was relieved of his command in early 1943 and then abandoned the German army lines under German fire to surrender to the Red Army. He became a Soviet collaborator while a prisoner of war. After the war he was convicted by the Soviet Union of war crimes. In 1996, he was posthumously pardoned by Russia.

Georg von Sodenstern

Georg von Sodenstern (15 November 1889 – 20 July 1955) was a German general in the Wehrmacht during World War II who commanded the 19th Army. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross of Nazi Germany.

Friedrich-Carl “Fritz” von Steinkeller

Friedrich-Carl von Steinkeller (28 March 1896 – 19 October 1981) was a general in the Wehrmacht during World War II. He was a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross of Nazi Germany. Steinkeller surrendered to the Red Army forces in the course of the Soviet Mogilev Offensive in June 1944; he was released in 1955.

Henning von Tresckow

Herrmann Karl Robert “Henning” von Tresckow (January 10, 1901 – July 21, 1944) was a Generalmajor in the German Wehrmacht who organized German resistance against Adolf Hitler. He attempted to assassinate Hitler in March 1943 and drafted the Valkyrie plan for a coup against the German government. He was described by the Gestapo as the “prime mover” and the “evil spirit” behind the July 20 plot to assassinate Hitler. He committed suicide on the Eastern Front upon the plot’s failure.

Kurt von Tippelskirch

Kurt Oskar Heinrich Ludwig Wilhelm von Tippelskirch (9 October 1891 – May 10, 1957) was a general in the German Army during World War II.

Heinrich von Vietinghoff

Heinrich Gottfried Otto Richard von Vietinghoff genannt (de: known as) Scheel (December 6, 1887 – February 23, 1952) was a German Colonel-General (Generaloberst) of the German Army (Wehrmacht Heer) during the Second World War. He was also a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves (German: Ritterkreuz des Eisernen Kreuzes mit Eichenlaub). The Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross and its higher grade Oak Leaves was awarded to recognize extreme battlefield bravery or successful military leadership. He is best known for commanding the German and Italian troops in German-occupied Italy in 1945.

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