O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

General WWII era German military discussion that doesn't fit someplace more specific.
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O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Wed Oct 07, 2009 10:52 am

Greetings Troops !! :D

Can someone please tell me when, officially or unofficially, the O.K.H. took over command of all military matters pertaining to the "Eastern Front", relegating the O.K.W. to command of the "lesser important" theatres of war ??

Could it have been around 19 December 1941, when Oberster Befehlshaber der Wehrmacht Adolf Hitler replaced Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch as Oberbefehlshaber des Heeres ??

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
Best regards,
John Mulholland
Signed: "The Shadow"

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by phylo_roadking » Wed Oct 07, 2009 11:01 am

actually - I though the the process was OKH gradually LOST everything EXCEPT the Eastern Front to the OKW! :D
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle." - Malcolm Reynolds

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Wed Oct 07, 2009 12:04 pm

phylo roadking wrote:actually - I though the the process was OKH gradually LOST everything EXCEPT the Eastern Front to the OKW! :D
:shock:

You're probably right "p_r" !! :D :D :D

I wonder if it was difficult for the head of the OKH to give up power to the head of the OKW ....... or the other way around ?? :wink:

He must have spent a lot of time arguing with himself !! :roll:

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by phylo_roadking » Wed Oct 07, 2009 1:36 pm

....or...as the Eastern front became the big headache he may not have had time to notice...? :shock:
"Well, my days of not taking you seriously are certainly coming to a middle." - Malcolm Reynolds

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Wed Oct 07, 2009 5:48 pm

:up: :up: :D
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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by ljadw » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:56 am

Shadow wrote:Greetings Troops !! :D

Can someone please tell me when, officially or unofficially, the O.K.H. took over command of all military matters pertaining to the "Eastern Front", relegating the O.K.W. to command of the "lesser important" theatres of war ??

Could it have been around 19 December 1941, when Oberster Befehlshaber der Wehrmacht Adolf Hitler replaced Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch as Oberbefehlshaber des Heeres ??

Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
Best regards,
John Mulholland
Was it not on 22 june 1941,OKH beying responsible for Barbarossa (minus Finland )and OKW for the rest(occupation forces + North Africa ) ?

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Mon Feb 22, 2010 4:12 pm

Greetings "ljadw" !! :D

I honestly don't know !! :oops:

On the 22nd June 1941 the Östliche Frontseite Heersgruppen reported to the OBdH (Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch) through his Chef GenStdH (Generaloberst Franz Halder) who, in turn, were answerable (theoretically) to the Chef OKW (Generalfeldmarschall Wilhelm Keitel) who, in turn, was answerable to the Oberster Befehlshaber der Wehrmacht (Adolf Hitler).

So, as I understand it, on day of Operation Barbarossa the chain of command went something like this: :[]

1. Armeeoberkommands reported to:
2. Heeresgruppen reported to:
3. O.K.H. reported to:
4. O.K.W. reported to:
5. Hitler !!

Or something like that - :roll:
Signed: "The Shadow"

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by ljadw » Wed Feb 24, 2010 1:53 pm

Shadow wrote:Greetings "ljadw" !! :D

I honestly don't know !! :oops:

On the 22nd June 1941 the Östliche Frontseite Heersgruppen reported to the OBdH (Generalfeldmarschall Walther von Brauchitsch) through his Chef GenStdH (Generaloberst Franz Halder) who, in turn, were answerable (theoretically) to the Chef OKW (Generalfeldmarschall Wilhelm Keitel) who, in turn, was answerable to the Oberster Befehlshaber der Wehrmacht (Adolf Hitler).

So, as I understand it, on day of Operation Barbarossa the chain of command went something like this: :[]

1. Armeeoberkommands reported to:
2. Heeresgruppen reported to:
3. O.K.H. reported to:
4. O.K.W. reported to:
5. Hitler !!

Or something like that - :roll:
Hm,The authority of the OKW is an old mythe (that never will die :wink: ),in fact the power of the OKW was very limited :it was the war ministry ,under an other name.
Head of the OKW was Hitler, who delegated the dayly running to Keitel (who,untill 1938) was the chief of cabinet of the minister of war .
The 4 main agencies of the OKW were :
Amt Ausland -Abwehre (the espionage and security services of the Wehrmacht):head Admiral Canaris
Wehrwirtschaft-und Ruestungsamt(agency for armament and war economy ):head General Thomas
Wehrmachtfuhrungsamt:head general Jodl
Algemeines Wehrmachtamt (central admilistration=ministry of war ):Head General Reinicke
The Abwehr lost the battle against the SS
Thomas lost almost all power to the benefit of Speer
Jodl:was NEVER something as chairman of the joint chiefs ;he had no authority on the operations on the Eastern front.
Because Keitel and Jodl had few things to do,they were always in Hitler's neighbourhood,in the hope they could increase their power,if they were in Berlinfar away from Fueherhauptquartier,they would lose influence .
Before Barbarossa,the only operation for the Wehrmachfuehrungsamt was Weseruebung (the attack on Danemark and Norway).
At the start of Barbarossa,there was a division :the East was for OKH (OKH theatre),the rest for OKW (OKW theatres),but AOK 20 in Finland (Dietl) continued to depend from OKW,because,initially,they were coming from Norway .
Of course,OKW tried tohave authority on army,navy and air force,but never,it succeeded .
The attempts from OKW already started before the war,under Blomberg,who was minister of war AND commander-in-chief of the Wehrmacht,this was only a meaningless title ,but army,navy and air force joined their efforts to block these attempts .
Blomberg,who had Hitler's ear 8) ,ceated the Abteilung Landesverteidigung (that was to be a combined staff,under a hidden name),Beck,army chief of staff,followed the principle'If you can't beat them,join them '(and sabotage them 8) ) and his candidate ,Jodl,became chief of the Abteilung Landesverteidigung,with as mission to spy(Troyan Horse 8) ),but ,when Jodl choose the side of Blomberg,there was open war with the Army staff:Beck was forbidding all members of the Army staff,to have any contact (even unofficially ) with the Abteilung Landesverteidigung ) .

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by ljadw » Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:19 pm

Hitler' decree on the creation of the OKW(4 february 1938 )
Wehrmachtamt steht als OKW und als militaerischer Stab unter dem Befehl des Fuehers und Reichskanzlers
This means that the Wehrmachtamt(office of the chief of cabinet of the Minister of War) became Hitler's military staff,which Hitler could use it at will (one of the plans for Barbarossa was made by WFS )
Chef OKW ist dem Reichsministern gleichgestellt
The chief of the OKW was equivalent in status to the other ministers (necessary,because he exercised the function of War Minister )
Das OKW nimmt zugleich die Geschaefte des Reichskriegsministers wahr
The OKW also assumes the duties of the milster of war
Chef OKW uebt bisher dem Reichskriegsminster zustehende Befugnisse aus.
The chief of the OKW is exercising the authority formerly belonging to the minister of War

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:41 pm

Greetings "ifadw": :(
Danke zu der Information !!
But, I think, I am still as "dumm" as a was before !!
Bester respekt,
John :(
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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by mellenthin » Mon Mar 14, 2011 7:16 am

Manstein's memorandum on the proposed organisation of the command of the Wehrmacht,written in 1937(Soldat im 20.Jahrhundert Bernard &Graefe Verlag 1997 ,pp385-388) is an interesting read:

"1)The Führer is the commander in chief of the Wehrmacht. Directly subordinated to him are the commanders of the different components of the Wehrmacht and the Secretary of state for defense
2) The commanders in chief of the Army, Airforce and the Navy are as a Highest War Council the advisory organisation of the Führer for the conduct of the war by the Wehrmacht and the preparedness for war of the Nation
The Highest Warcouncil determines:

a) the military objective of the war
b) the missions of the 3 components of the Wehrmacht
c) the general organisation of the Wehrmacht
d) the reconciliation of means and forces
e) common questions concerning the inner life of the 3 Wehrmacht components

The preparation and the issuing of the decisions of the Warcouncil belongs to a Secretariat which consists of the three chiefs of staff of the 3 Wehrmachtcomponents under the presidency of the chief of staff of the Army. The chiefs staff can be called to sessions of the Warcouncil. In less important questions concerning c),d),e) the Secretariat can be entrusted with the decisionmaking in place of the Warcouncil.
The execution of the decisions of the Warcouncil belongs to the commanders in chief of the Wehrmacht components and the Secretary of State for Defense.
3) The general chief of staff of the Reich is the advisor to the commander in chief of the Wehrmacht for the command of the Wehrmacht in the war . He represents the questions of the global conduct of the war in the Warcouncil. To ensure the coordination between the general conduct of the war and the command of the army ,the general chief of staff of the Reich is at the same time commander in chief of the army.
On the order of the commander in chief of the Wehrmacht and in execution of the decisions of the Warcouncil the general chief of staff gives directives for the conduct of the war by the Wehrmacht.
They are limited to :

a) the determination of the operational objectives
b) the regulation of the collaboration between the Wehrmachtcomponents
c) the necessary preparations for this in peacetime

As a workingstaff the general chief of staff has a command section in which all components of the Wehrmacht are represented. It is part of the general staff of the army and at the same time carries out the work of the Secretariat of the Warcouncil.
The chief of the communications of the Wehrmacht is subordinate to the general chief of staff. "

To be continued.

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Wed Mar 16, 2011 9:00 pm

Danke "mellinthin" !! :D
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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by mellenthin » Thu Mar 17, 2011 1:34 pm

Mansteins memorandum of 1937 continued

" The Secretary of State for defense is responsible for the fighting nation, that is for harnessing all forces and means of the people and the state for the conduct of the war.
Under him
- the Defense Office takes care of the cooperation of all sectors of public life for the war aim
- the War Economy Office is responsible for the organisation of the war economy
- the State Security Office maintains internal order

The Secretary of state for defense represents the questions of his sphere of responsability in the War Council and executes the decisions of the War Council on the order of the Führer and commander in chief of the Wehrmacht."

To be continued.

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Re: O.K.H. and the "Eastern Front".

Post by Shadow » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:00 pm

To: "mellenthin" !!

Keep it coming my friend !! :D :up: :up: :up:

Best regards,

John Mulholland
(a.k.a. The Shadow)

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