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General Reinhard Gehlen, Fremde Heere Ost

Discussions on High Command, strategy and the Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) in general.

General Reinhard Gehlen, Fremde Heere Ost

Postby filuhzwawy on 08 Apr 2004 20:46

Hi,

does anyone have any info on this organisation and its successes and failures?

thanks
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Reinhard Gehlen info

Postby genstab on 12 Apr 2004 11:46

Two good books on him are "The General Was a Spy" by Heinz Hohne and Herman Zolling- as Hohne is a German author it no doubt is in translation in Europe- and Gehlen's autobiography, "The Service" (German title "Der Dienst").
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Postby ChrisMAg2 on 13 Apr 2004 09:54

In short:
Fremde Heere Ost: the military intelligence branch for the easter territorries: Poland, Czechoslowakia, Hungary, the baltic states, Bulgaria, Romania.
They were pretty effective in their job. Infact their results were a valiable pray for the US Intelligence for the first post war years.
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Postby filuhzwawy on 13 Apr 2004 14:45

any successes on the russian theater
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Postby General on 13 Apr 2004 18:19

What's the difference between Abwehr and Fremde Heere Ost?
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Postby Svennie on 13 Apr 2004 20:37

The Abwehr was the counter-espionage organisation (in certain ways similar to functions of the SD) and FHO was the intelligence-gathering organisation of the Generalstab des Heeres.

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Postby Andreas on 13 Apr 2004 23:03

filuhzwawy wrote:any successes on the russian theater


Yes - you can try and Google for TM30-430 (I think, someone correct me please if that is wrong), the 'Handbook of Red Army Forces', published by the US War Department from 1946 onwards. There is an online version floating about somewhere. It is a distillation of Soviet material and tactics, based on Gehlen's work.

It seems Gehlen also correctly forecast the attack on the Rshev balcony in November 1942, enabling preparations that led to the defeat of the Red Army's attempt to cut it off. He failed to predict the attack on Stalingrad though, and later in the war failed to predict the Iassy-Kishinev operation until it was too late. (Glantz' paper on Iassy has the intel situation laid out, and Kissel's 'Die Katastrophe in Rumaenien' contains the Feindlage information confirming this, IIRC).

A major disagreement with Hitler's view of the state of the Red Army seems to have developed towards the end of the war, when Gehlen was right about the likely number of Soviet divisions, but wrong about the manpower levels. Hitler seems to have had the right inkling on the manpower, but seems to have underestimated the number considerably, leading him to underestimate the threat posed by the Red Army in 1945. Not quite sure where I read that, or how correct it is.

After the war Gehlen built up the German secret service again, it was first called 'Amt Gehlen'.
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Postby Foelkersam on 14 Apr 2004 18:10

You also had the Fremde Heere West headed by Colonel Alexis von Roenne.

/David
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Fremde Heere West

Postby genstab on 15 Apr 2004 11:52

First commander of Foreign Armies West was Oberst (later Generalmajor) Ulrich Liss, who went on to division command.
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Postby Panzermahn on 08 Jun 2004 10:29

The Abwehr was the counter-espionage organisation (in certain ways similar to functions of the SD) and FHO was the intelligence-gathering organisation of the Generalstab des Heeres.

Sven


Hi Sven, no offense but it is a very accurate generalisation of Abwehr. Abwehr is the main military intelligence that was established initially as a secret organization under Reichswehr and then Wehrmacht. It existed even before FHO and FHW and it was under Captain Conrad Patzig before the Army generals clamored for another officer. After the step down from Patzig, Canaris took over. At that time, the only serious rival to Abwehr was Heydrich's SD. When Barbarossa begin, Hitler decreed that OKH run military operations and OKW run military operations for rest of the fronts. Fremde Heere Ost was strictly army intelligence under the OKH and Fremde Heere West was alos strictly army intelligence under OKW. Not forgetting that the Kriegsmarine had their own MArine Abwehr and the Luftwaffe had their own Luft Abwehr

The Abwehr is divided into 3 departments;

Department I is intelligence
Department II is sabotage
Department III is counter intelligence headed by Colonel Erwin Lahousen
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Postby Condor Legion on 27 Sep 2005 20:30

General Reinhard Gehlen was the brain of the counter-guerilla forces that organized in West Europe.
'Underground armies' which fighted against communists and anti-communist secret services created by General Gehlen.
BND was organized by Gehlen too.
General Gehlen was very smart soldier...
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Postby Michate on 28 Sep 2005 07:36

There is a good article about Foreign Armies East's work, successes and failures:

David Thomas: Foreign Armies East and German Military Intelligence in Russia 1941-45. Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 22 (1987), pp. 261-301.

Online available via the http://www.jstor.org article search engine.

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Postby MaPen on 28 Sep 2005 09:17

Another good source about Gehlen would be Hitler's Spies - German Military Intelligence in WWII by David Kahn (ISBN 0306809494).

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Postby Andreas on 29 Sep 2005 05:42

Larry, Michael

I have moved your discussion on JSTOR to the Research forum.

viewtopic.php?t=86800

All the best

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