Fallenkezef

Respected Foes

143 posts in this topic

Here's an interesting question. Which of your nation's WW2 foes do you most respect and admire?

 

For my pary it's the Fallschirmjager.  Almosy every British and Commonwealtj soldier who faced them speaks of the German paras highly. Crete, Italy and Normandy, they impressed the Brits with thier courage, skill, professionalism and unique sense of honour.

 

During the fighting Monte Cassino, the Fallschirmjager requested the use of British stretchers during a ceasfire, whic the Essex regiment kindly obliged. They then made sure to return the stretchers before the ceasefire ended.

 

I'm curious which regiments or units inspire respect in people who's grandfathers fought against.

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For me it's the medics, regardless of side, that went and did their utmost to help the wounded, and espescially those that aided enemy wounded as well..can't really name any regiments that i'd respect though, as during the 18-days campaign (the battle of Belgium) the Germans were not very honourable, using POW's and civilians as human shields a few times....we didn't really fight Italy (although our colonial forces sent a medical unit to Ethiopia during its liberation, and n°10 inter-allied commando fought in Italy) and we didn't fight any of the others either as far as i'm aware.

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6 minutes ago, Ryle1 said:

For me it's the medics, regardless of side, that went and did their utmost to help the wounded, and espescially those that aided enemy wounded as well..can't really name any regiments that i'd respect though, as during the 18-days campaign (the battle of Belgium) the Germans were not very honourable, using POW's and civilians as human shields a few times....we didn't really fight Italy (although our colonial forces sent a medical unit to Ethiopia during its liberation, and n°10 inter-allied commando fought in Italy) and we didn't fight any of the others either as far as i'm aware.

 

I believe there was a Belgian squadron in the RAF

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41 minutes ago, Fallenkezef said:

I believe there was a Belgian squadron in the RAF

 

2, n°349 and n°350 Spitfire squadrons which still exist nowadays, both being F-16 squadrons.

Not to forgett the 55 Belgians that went through 609 squadron, becoming later in the war one of the most renown Typhoon squadron, 3 of the 10 Typhoon aces being Belgian and coming from 609. ;) 

I must admitt I have great respect for the guys who flew ground attack planes, whichever country they flew with, flying down low in constant danger of fast firing ack-ack, and if they ever had to bail out at those height... Brave men they were...

Edited by FuryMkI
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Paratroops are always pretty damn good m80. In modern African conflicts, paratroopers were the bee's knees and probably still are. I can only imagine how amazing these guys would be in COIN.

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- Merrils Marauders, unbelievable what a campaign they had. 

- Brandenburger as long as they were part of the Abwehr and not a Pz.Gren. Div. way to unknown for what they did. 

- The Finnish Army and its high fighting moral no matter against whom.

- The Tiger Abteilungen, always placed in hot spots, rarely rest and not to forget the first units crews were misfits and not "elite" soldiers.

- South Africans and ANZAC troops, highly respected. 

 

 

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For me, it would probably be the soldiers of the Panzer Lehr Division.

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Every soldier is respected by me.  Any man that served his country during their time of need earns my respect.

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Hauptstrumfuhrer Fritz Klingenberg... Died near the end of the war and his body was never discovered.  He is the man who led 30 men into the Yugoslav Capitol of Belgrade and captured the City taking 1300 prisoners immediately with a further 1200 to 1500 surrendering to his troops soon after.  He died in action in April 1945 just a few days before the end of the war.  Imagine the stories he had!   It is a great story if anyone cares to read it! 

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7 hours ago, *ChameleonLord said:

Hauptstrumfuhrer Fritz Klingenberg... Died near the end of the war and his body was never discovered.  He is the man who led 30 men into the Yugoslav Capitol of Belgrade and captured the City taking 1300 prisoners immediately with a further 1200 to 1500 surrendering to his troops soon after.  He died in action in April 1945 just a few days before the end of the war.  Imagine the stories he had!   It is a great story if anyone cares to read it! 

 

I really have to remind that he was part of the 2nd SS "Das Reich" and later in the war became the commander of 17th SS-Panzergrenadier Division. He was (as far I know) however never accused of any war crimes.

 

But his capture of Belgrade is bit more amazing. He was captain of an recon unit of the division and without much resistance, he set checkpoints and secured bridges before he reached Belgrade with a small group of soldiers (around 30). However, when he reached Danube river just few kilometers from capital, boat he used to cross the river sank and he was stranded in Belgrade with just 5 men. Now city was in state of chaos after a major bombing raid by Luftwaffe and he managed to reach, after short firefights in suburbs, city center and raised German flag there. Now mayor of Belgrade sees this and assumes the German army is not far behind so he talks to Klingenberg the conditions of surrender. In a bold move, Klingenberg claims that he can order Luftwaffe to bomb the city flat if the city did not surrender at that moment. Mayor gave in and whole garrison, some 1300 men, surrendered to Klingenbergs small band. While waiting, garrisons were kept captive in hotels guarded by 1 German soldier each while waiting for more troops to come in. Naturally he was awarded with Iron Cross with Oak Leaves for this.

 

There is also some mentions that he led recon units towards Moscows suburbs in closing months of 1941, possibly being closest German soldier to reach Moscow before German retreat.

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18 hours ago, Fallenkezef said:

Here's an interesting question. Which of your nation's WW2 foes do you most respect and admire?

 

For my pary it's the Fallschirmjager.  Almosy every British and Commonwealtj soldier who faced them speaks of the German paras highly. Crete, Italy and Normandy, they impressed the Brits with thier courage, skill, professionalism and unique sense of honour.

My great uncle was in the New Zealand army and fought against Luftwaffe Fallschirmjager during the battle of Crete.

He thought they were a bunch of complete brutes, xxxxxxxx and amongst the worst Germans he ever encountered. He even captured a brown SA dagger off of one of their corpses and brought it back to NZ and it's still a family souvenir. Because an awful many of the Fallschirmjager who fought (and perished) at Crete were actually Nazis and members of the SA.

He said that many of them committed atrocities against the local Cretan population and he (and many other NZ veterans of that battle) strongly suspected that many NZ soldiers were captured and executed. And he told my father and uncles an anecdote of three Fallschirmjager that his group captured who were very arrogant, disrespectful and completely uncooperative and that he heard the gunfire of them getting executed after he handed them over to... ...whoever.

 

"Unique sense of honour"?

Edited by Been_Benuane
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43 minutes ago, Been_Benuane said:

My great uncle was in the New Zealand army and fought against Luftwaffe Fallschirmjager during the battle of Crete.

He thought they were a bunch of complete brutes, xxxxxxxx and amongst the worst Germans he ever encountered. He even captured a brown SA dagger off of one of their corpses and brought it back to NZ and it's still a family souvenir. Because an awful many of the Fallschirmjager who fought (and perished) at Crete were actually Nazis and members of the SA.

He said that many of them committed atrocities against the local Cretan population and he (and many other NZ veterans of that battle) strongly suspected that many NZ soldiers were captured and executed. And he told my father and uncles an anecdote of three Fallschirmjager that his group captured who were very arrogant, disrespectful and completely uncooperative and that he heard the gunfire of them getting executed after he handed them over to... ...whoever.

 

"Unique sense of honour"?

 

That's interesting, I don't doubt your uncle's account. However it doesn't tally with the reports from North Africa or Italy, especialy the Essex battalions at Monte Casino.

 

That being said, Crete was a hard fought, near disaster that cost the Germans dearly. Wouldn't be the first time soldiers took out grieg and frustration on civilians and enemies

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German Fallschirmjäger usually consisted of voluntaries and were selected from soldiers who showed exceptional drive.

Ofc the direction of this drive can be wrong or right.

Anyways, die-hard SA members or Nazis in general as soldiers in any troop would not go kindly with who they considered "sub-human", but in regular troops, Wehrmacht officers usually can put them in their place and make them abide to the rules of war (unless they are Nazis too).

Fallschirmjäger may operate outside of this surveillance more often.

 

I dont want to make any excuses here. Just provide an explanation why these Fallschirmjäger may have behaved that way.

Anyways, one other great example of their achievements was the operation against Eben-Emael. 60 Fallschirmjäger against a total garnison of ~1500 men.

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Anyways, one other great example of their achievements was the operation against Eben-Emael. 60 Fallschirmjäger against a total garnison of ~1500 men.

 

also: the commander of the operation only arrived there mid battle since his glider was accidently launched too early and had to be brought up into the air again

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1 hour ago, Sodanjumala said:

 

I really have to remind that he was part of the 2nd SS "Das Reich" and later in the war became the commander of 17th SS-Panzergrenadier Division. He was (as far I know) however never accused of any war crimes.

 

But his capture of Belgrade is bit more amazing. He was captain of an recon unit of the division and without much resistance, he set checkpoints and secured bridges before he reached Belgrade with a small group of soldiers (around 30). However, when he reached Danube river just few kilometers from capital, boat he used to cross the river sank and he was stranded in Belgrade with just 5 men. Now city was in state of chaos after a major bombing raid by Luftwaffe and he managed to reach, after short firefights in suburbs, city center and raised German flag there. Now mayor of Belgrade sees this and assumes the German army is not far behind so he talks to Klingenberg the conditions of surrender. In a bold move, Klingenberg claims that he can order Luftwaffe to bomb the city flat if the city did not surrender at that moment. Mayor gave in and whole garrison, some 1300 men, surrendered to Klingenbergs small band. While waiting, garrisons were kept captive in hotels guarded by 1 German soldier each while waiting for more troops to come in. Naturally he was awarded with Iron Cross with Oak Leaves for this.

 

There is also some mentions that he led recon units towards Moscows suburbs in closing months of 1941, possibly being closest German soldier to reach Moscow before German retreat.

Yes I know he was part of the Das Reich division.  His feats are no less impressive though.  Unfortunately there were a lot of German Soldiers that were part of the SS.  There was a certain prestige for the average one and a certain evil that has been applied to all of them (please do not think in anyway shape or form I am glorifying any of the war crimes that many did commit).  The OP asked for respected foes and Klingenbergs deeds are impressive by any standards.  The fact that he fought almost the entire war is impressive!

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1 hour ago, *ChameleonLord said:

Yes I know he was part of the Das Reich division.  His feats are no less impressive though.  Unfortunately there were a lot of German Soldiers that were part of the SS.  There was a certain prestige for the average one and a certain evil that has been applied to all of them (please do not think in anyway shape or form I am glorifying any of the war crimes that many did commit).  The OP asked for respected foes and Klingenbergs deeds are impressive by any standards.  The fact that he fought almost the entire war is impressive!

 

There is a difference between respect and like certainly.

 

Take Otto Skorzeny, very hard not to respect his exploits

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https://www.warhistoryonline.com/war-articles/crazy-irishman-rammed-a-tiger-ii-with-his-sherman-then-went-off-looking-for-a-firefly-to-make-sure-the-tiger-wouldnt-be-going-anywhere.html

 

Respected Allies!  John Reginald Gorman... Irish Guards Tanker.  I linked his story.  It has Ramming, respawn, and spawn camping all rolled into one excellent real life story!  He saved a lot of Canadians and British on that day through his actions! 

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22 minutes ago, *ChameleonLord said:

https://www.warhistoryonline.com/war-articles/crazy-irishman-rammed-a-tiger-ii-with-his-sherman-then-went-off-looking-for-a-firefly-to-make-sure-the-tiger-wouldnt-be-going-anywhere.html

 

Respected Allies!  John Reginald Gorman... Irish Guards Tanker.  I linked his story.  It has Ramming, respawn, and spawn camping all rolled into one excellent real life story!  He saved a lot of Canadians and British on that day through his actions! 

 

Never mess with a sober Irishman, angry Scotsman, pennyless Englishman or a hungry Welshman

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20 hours ago, Fallenkezef said:

 

Never mess with a sober Irishman, angry Scotsman, pennyless Englishman or a hungry Welshman

Such things exist?

I thought of them to be as mythical as Unicorns and funny Prussians.

Edited by Stahlvormund101
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https://www.warhistoryonline.com/war-articles/crazy-irishman-rammed-a-tiger-ii-with-his-sherman-then-went-off-looking-for-a-firefly-to-make-sure-the-tiger-wouldnt-be-going-anywhere.html

 

Respected Allies!  John Reginald Gorman... Irish Guards Tanker.  I linked his story.  It has Ramming, respawn, and spawn camping all rolled into one excellent real life story!  He saved a lot of Canadians and British on that day through his actions! 

 

 

Nice story, but its false.

 

What really happened was that the Tiger II reversed into that Sherman and got knocked out by a PaK 40 firing at said Sherman.

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16 minutes ago, Ulatersk said:

 

 

Nice story, but its false.

 

What really happened was that the Tiger II reversed into that Sherman and got knocked out by a PaK 40 firing at said Sherman.

Very nice... Now I have read that story many times in History Magazines, books  but not once has anyone said anything different until now.  Do you have proof?   A reference?  I mean there are several paintings, the pictures shown and of course the accounts of the guys who were there! 

Edited by *ChameleonLord
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Agree, while I dont consider it that unprobable (seeing the Pak40 as one of the most common AT guns of the Wehrmacht) I would have loved a source for the Pak40 claim too.

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