Read Grenadiers: The Story of Waffen SS General Kurt "Panzer" Meyer by Kurt Meyer Free Online
Book Title: Grenadiers: The Story of Waffen SS General Kurt "Panzer" Meyer|
The author of the book: Kurt Meyer
ISBN 13: 9780811731973
Edition: Stackpole Books,U.S.
Date of issue: May 15th 2005
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 36.86 MB
City - Country: No data
Loaded: 2091 times
Reader ratings: 7.4
Read full description of the books:
Credibility in Question.
I have read several books from Stackpole and found them well written and edited. Michael Wittman I and II, and Otto Carius', "Tigers in the Mud." These were very informative and interesting. The books flowed nicely with excellent reflections of combat tactics and the men under their command.
This book has more flaws then any other I have ever read. How could something like this be put into print? Surely the public wasn't demanding an incomplete work being published with so many misspellings and formatting issues. The pictures are very difficult to examine on a kindle (even on the pc). Okay, enough about Stackpoles lack of editing.
PanzerMeyer. Many of the reviews talked about his bravado commanding tanks. Did you read the story or just pick single excerpts? He was in charge of a motorized motorcycle unit in his early years until he was assigned to the 12 Hitlerjugend Division. Even then, this was not a tank unit.
Was Meyer an excellent tactician? Yes, if we believe all of the descriptions of the battles he was involved in. He used Guderians words to the max; "the motor is a weapon." He was instilled with the ideal and perfected it with great glean.
The action scenes occurring around Caen after the invasion support Patton's theme that Monty couldn't take Caen by D +10. Meyer constantly knocks the timid advance of the Canadians when they are on the brink of breaking the back of the German 7th army. He fails to mention how the Canadians were under the control of Monty who we know was not a bold strategist if the numbers weren't in his favor. Did Meyer show great tactical skill in stemming the tide of the Allied armor around Caen? The answer is a definite yes! They were badly out numbered with no air cover. Yet, why doesn't he reflect on the American divisions that were driving to Falaise during operation Cobra. He had to have known that the enemy was bearing down and creating a huge cauldron such as Demyansk and Kiev. For the reader to think he didn't know would be an absurd opinion. He mentions several times he was in meetings with Von Rundstedt and Rommel. Surely they made mention of the worsening situation.
This brings us to July 20 1944. It has been well documented in many other works how the average soldier was shocked that a group of conspirators made an attempt on Adolf Hitler. Yet, on many occasion prior to the attempted assassination, he speaks (Meyer) of how the war needs to end before all is lost. How else did he think this would be accomplished? Would Hitler agree to the terms of Casablanca. I don't think so. So, Herr Meyer, how is Germany going to save herself from the dilemma?
One other point to address is who is Meyer referring to when he complains that the higher-up in the command positions were showing a true lack of understanding the military situation on the ground. OKH, Kietel, Jodl? Are these the men he is laying the blame on? Why doesn't he specifically call them out? He never fails to mention other high ranking officers (including the Der Fuhrer) when he is in there company discussing the military situation?
Go back to the earlier chapters where he wonders why they are attacking Poland, the Lowlands and France. He alludes to feeling a heavy conscious about waging war against perceived friendly countries. He shows none of this compassion for "Operation Barbarossa" until his unit is deep in enemy territory and gives a hint that the vastness of Russia would be their doom.
Meyer mentions nothing of the camps or the genocide. How can this be? Did he not know the atrocities his countrymen inflicted on millions of people in Germany and conquered countries? That is impossible to imagine for he was reading the papers while in prison. He only recounts on the stories surrounding him and nothing else. Are we to believe that the papers stories only revolved around him? It would be juvenile to believe he knew nothing of what the Americans, British and Russians uncovered at Dachau, Buchenwald, and Auschwitz. His "none" mention of these events is criminal to say the least.
Herr Meyer points out the none of the Waffen SS units were formed from undesirables. They were only professional soldiers doing their duty. That is not the case. Totekopf was a division made up of guards who served at many of the concentration camps. I do not appreciate history being distorted to only show one version.
Atrocities committed by the Allies. Yes the happened. Were they right? No! But they also didn't systematically eliminate individuals because of their race. It is a crime for him to maintain the stance that he and his men did nothing wrong. They supported the Third Reich and all of its policies. Like Otto Carius, they accepted no blame for the pain and suffering they inflicted on the world, but rather shifted the blame to others. If Germany would not have launched the campaign of domination on September 1,1939, your country would not have been exposed to the fury of the 8th Air Force. The cities of of your beloved Fatherland would not have been laid to waste. I believe those statements were echoed time and again during the Nuremberg trials, "I was only following orders."
What about his trial? Was he unfairly judged. Ask the twenty million Russians who died. Ask the mothers of the Canadians whose boys met their maker at the hands of the Hitlerjugend. Ask the French who were murdered at Ordur Sur Glane at the hands of Waffen SS Division Das Reich if he was innocent. Many might disagree, but he was guilty. Should his death sentence been carried out? That is for the reader and his maker to determine.
In defense of Herr Meyer, it is true there was a true spirit de corps amongst those in the Waffen SS. There were the cream of the crop and fought bravely and steadfastly for their crumbling empire. I have no doubt that his men would lay down their lives and follow him to the gates of hell if he so ordered. I respect him for the devotion he bestowed on his men and vice-versa. But the facts remain, he makes no admissions that the war was wrong. He would rather blame the Americans and British for allowing the Communists to infest the Balkans and Central Europe. Herr Meyer, who chose to plunge the world into WWII. America? Britain? Canada? No, it was your beloved Germany who fired the first shots.
Do I recommend this book for those attempting to understand the mindset of the German soldier? Yes. Why? You get a look into the mind of a great tactician, but also a man who was blinded by his leaders. How could men of such loyalty and respect for a code of military honor and morality take an oath to a government bent on destroying the code.
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