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The Contest Of Wills, Personalities And Warcraft Between The World War II Adversaries Erwin Rommel, Nazi Germany's Genius General Known As ''The Desert Fox'' By His Enemies, And Bernard Montgomery, Great Britain's Most Distinguished Military Commander Known As "Monty" By The Allies, Hosted And Narrated By Gerald McRaney And Presented In The Highest DVD Quality MPG Video Format Of 9.1 MBPS As An MP4 Video Download Or Archival Quality All Regions Format DVD! (Color, 1995, 48 Minutes.)
Erwin Rommel, German General, Field Marshal and military theorist (November 15, 1891 - October 14, 1944) is #born Johannes Erwin Eugen Rommel at Heidenheim, in Wurttemberg, Germany. Popularly known as the Desert Fox, he served as field marshal in the Wehrmacht (armed forces) of Nazi Germany during World War II, as well as serving in the Reichswehr of the Weimar Republic, and the army of Imperial Germany. Rommel was a highly decorated officer in World War I and was awarded the Pour le Merite, Germany's highest military award,for his actions on the Italian Front. In 1937 he published his classic book on military tactics, Infantry Attacks, drawing on his experiences in that war. In World War II, he distinguished himself as the commander of the 7th Panzer Division during the 1940 Battle Of France. His early victories and leadership of German and Italian forces in the North African campaign established his reputation as one of the ablest tank commanders of the war, and earned him the nickname der Wustenfuchs, "the Desert Fox". However, in 1943, he was defeated at El Alamein by the British under General Montgomery. Among his British adversaries he had a reputation for chivalry, and his phrase "war without hate" has been used to describe the North African campaign. A number of historians have since rejected the phrase as myth and uncovered numerous examples of war crimes and abuses both towards enemy soldiers and native populations in Africa during the conflict. Other historians note that there is no clear evidence Rommel was involved or aware of these crimes (although Caron and Mullner point out that his military successes allowed these crimes to happen) with some pointing out that the war in the desert, as fought by Rommel and his opponents, still came as close to a clean fight as there was in World War II. He later commanded the German forces opposing the Allied cross-channel invasion of Normandy in June 1944. A number of historians connect Rommel himself with war crimes, although this is not the opinion of the majority. With the Nazis gaining power in Germany, Rommel gradually came to accept the new regime, with historians giving different accounts on the specific period and his motivations. He is generally considered a supporter and close friend of Adolf Hitler, at least until near the end of the war, if not necessarily sympathetic to the party and the paramilitary forces associated with it. His stance towards Nazi ideology and his level of knowledge of the Holocaust remain matters of debate among scholars. In 1944, Rommel was implicated in the failed 20 July plot to assassinate Hitler. Because of Rommel's status as a national hero, Hitler desired to eliminate him quietly instead of immediately executing him, as many other plotters were. Rommel was given a choice between committing suicide, in return for assurances that his reputation would remain intact and that his family would not be persecuted following his death, or facing a trial that would result in his disgrace and execution; he chose the former and on October 14, 1944 committed suicide at age 52 near Ulm, Germany using a cyanide pill. Rommel was given a state funeral, and it was announced that he had succumbed to his injuries from the strafing of his staff car in Normandy. Rommel has become a larger-than-life figure in both Allied and Nazi propaganda, and in postwar popular culture, with numerous authors considering him an apolitical, brilliant commander and a victim of the Third Reich, although this assessment is contested by other authors as the Rommel myth. Rommel's reputation for conducting a clean war was used in the interest of the West German rearmament and reconciliation between the former enemies - the United Kingdom and the United States on one side and the new Federal Republic of Germany on the other. Several of Rommel's former subordinates, notably his chief of staff Hans Speidel, played key roles in German rearmament and integration into NATO in the postwar era. The German Army's largest military base, the Field Marshal Rommel Barracks, Augustdorf, is named in his honour.
Bernard Montgomery, 1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, KG, GCB, DSO, PC, DL, (November 17, 1887 - March 24, 1976), nicknamed "Monty" and the "Spartan General", English field marshal who fought in both wars of the European Civil War: the First European War (the First World War) and the Second EuropeanWar (the Second World War) was born Bernard Law Montgomery in Kennington, Surrey in south London, England. He saw action in the First World War as a junior officer of the Royal Warwickshire Regiment. At Meteren, near the Belgian border at Bailleul, he was shot through the right lung by a sniper, during the First Battle of Ypres. He returned to the Western Front as a general staff officer and took part in the Battle of Arras in April/May 1917. He also took part in the Battle of Passchendaele in late 1917 before finishing the war as chief of staff of the 47th (2nd London) Division. In the inter-war years he commanded the 17th (Service) Battalion, Royal Fusiliers and, later, the 1st Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment before becoming commander of 9th Infantry Brigade and then General Officer Commanding (GOC) 8th Infantry Division. During the Second World War he commanded the British Eighth Army from August 1942 in the Western Desert until the final Allied victory in Tunisia in May 1943. This command included the Second Battle of El Alamein, a turning point in the Western Desert Campaign. He subsequently commanded the British Eighth Army during the Allied invasion of Sicily and the Allied invasion of Italy. He was in command of all Allied ground forces during Operation Overlord from the initial landings until after the Battle of Normandy. He then continued in command of the 21st Army Group for the rest of the campaign in North West Europe. As such he was the principal field commander for the failed airborne attempt to bridge the Rhine at Arnhem, and the Allied Rhine crossing. On May 4, 1945 he took the German surrender at Luneburg Heath in Northern Germany. After the war he became Commander-in-Chief of the British Army of the Rhine (BAOR) in Germany and then Chief of the Imperial General Staff (1946-1948). He then served as Deputy Supreme Commander of NATO in Europe until his retirement in 1958. Montgomery died from unspecified causes in 1976 at his home Isington Mill in Isington, Hampshire, aged 88.