Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Discussions on all aspects of the Spanish Civil War including the Condor Legion, the Germans fighting for Franco in the Spanish Civil War.
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Steve
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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Steve » 08 Jun 2020 22:10

At first I just thought that all this was just someone being a bit over zealous about grammar and semantics with regard to my original post but now I’m not so sure. All sense of proportion with regard to the subject seems to have flown out of the window so I shall try to put the matter to bed one last time. The previous post adds nothing to the discussion and I don’t think the lecture on English grammar prior to that adds much either. Let us go back to basics.

The first line of my first post tells the reader that this is a post on Hajo Herrman and is based on his book Eagle Wings. I quoted from the book and the dots represent bits left out for example how his criticism of Spanish timekeeping came to his superior’s ears. Herrmann is asked to sign a paper because what he is about to be told is secret. The Kommandeur tells him that Franco has approached the Reich for assistance. In case anyone is confused by the name Kommandeur it is the German spelling for commander and not the person’s name. Herrmann is asked whether he wants to go to Spain or not and he agrees to go. I then wrote “The Kommandeur was probably thinking who to choose to go to Spain and maybe took the chance of getting rid of a rather undisciplined character”. In all honesty can anyone at this point claim that they did not understand that Herrmann was the one going to Spain? I was surprised that people thought it was the Commander who was the one going to Spain. However, on reflection I saw that because of how I had finished off there was a remote possibility for misunderstanding.

It is though the eight word sentence “He did not fly with the Condor Legion” that has caused most upset. Clearly you cannot fly for an organisation that is yet to be formed. To put it into a modern context it would be like claiming Hamilton drove for the Mercedes F1 team before it was formed. The eight word sentence was added for those (like me till I read the book) who thought that all German flyers in Spain flew with the Condor Legion. When pulled up on what I meant I admitted “I was not clear” and I stand by those words I could have been clearer. I also said that Herrmann was not clear and that was because he does not give a date for when he became a member of the Condor Legion.

What has followed I can only label as very odd with this from a post about the controversial sentence “That is literally not true. He went to Spain and he flew with the Condor Legion”. Followed by “as it was "created" later, then you are technically right, but that was not what you posted originally” but surely I did. Followed in another post with “I never said that the contingent Herrmann was sent to Spain with in August in 1936 was part of the Condor Legion. AFAIK, it wasn't”. My posts are then given a microscopic grammatical examination to prove what? I had already said “I was not clear” so I can only make a guess as to why but will refrain from giving an opinion. The last post from the gentleman in question includes remarks such as "And you don't have to explain if you think that a sentence like Erich Hartmann was sent to the Eastern Front and he flew with 7./JG 52 and 9./JG 52" is false or not” very odd.

This is all a shame because anyone reading this trivia with a poor command of English may well think twice about posting on the AHF if this is likely to happen.

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Ironmachine
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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Ironmachine » 09 Jun 2020 08:48

Steve wrote:At first I just thought that all this was just someone being a bit over zealous about grammar and semantics with regard to my original post but now I’m not so sure.
And at first I just thought that all this was just someone being a bit over zealous about not having expressed himself with total clarity in his original post but now I’m not so sure. And certainly I'm interested in grammar and semantics.
Steve wrote:All sense of proportion with regard to the subject seems to have flown out of the window so I shall try to put the matter to bed one last time. The previous post adds nothing to the discussion and I don’t think the lecture on English grammar prior to that adds much either. Let us go back to basics.

Well, it certainly adds nothing to the fact that Herrmann flew with the Condor Legion.. The “lecture” on English grammar may not add much to that fact, but I find it interesting. As English is not my first language, I’m always wanting to improve my knowledge of it. And I don’t really understand why “and”, which AFAIK is just a nexus and does not modify in any way the sentences it connects, is going to change a sentence from being true to being false. Sure, this is not the more suitable thread, it would probably fit much better in The Lounge, but here it all began and here I want to learn unless otherwise decided by higher authorities.
Steve wrote:The first line of my first post tells the reader that this is a post on Hajo Herrman and is based on his book Eagle Wings. I quoted from the book and the dots represent bits left out for example how his criticism of Spanish timekeeping came to his superior’s ears. Herrmann is asked to sign a paper because what he is about to be told is secret. The Kommandeur tells him that Franco has approached the Reich for assistance. In case anyone is confused by the name Kommandeur it is the German spelling for commander and not the person’s name. Herrmann is asked whether he wants to go to Spain or not and he agrees to go.
No problem here.
Steve wrote:I then wrote “The Kommandeur was probably thinking who to choose to go to Spain and maybe took the chance of getting rid of a rather undisciplined character”. In all honesty can anyone at this point claim that they did not understand that Herrmann was the one going to Spain? I was surprised that people thought it was the Commander who was the one going to Spain. However, on reflection I saw that because of how I had finished off there was a remote possibility for misunderstanding.
Ah, but your original wording was:
After agreeing to go he was discharged from the Luftwaffe. Hermann comes across as a man who thought he knew better than most of his commanding officers. The Kommandeur was probably thinking who to choose to go to Spain and maybe took the chance of getting rid of a rather undisciplined character. He did not fly with the Condor Legion.
As you can see, here there is no “and” joining two sentences that could modify its meaning. We have just one sentence: “He did not fly with the Condor Legion.” No adverb of time either, so this is (AFAIK) an absolute. He did not fly with the Condor Legion, never. Then we have two options. First, “he” is Herrmann. But Hermann did fly with the Condor Legion, so it can be that option. Second, “he” is the Kommandeur. Well, if he did not fly with the Condor Legion, he was really getting rid of Hermann by sending him to Spain, so this option makes sense. I think there is much more than a “remote possibility” for misunderstanding. In fact, two people in this thread misunderstood you. Sure, they were not native English speakers, but many people here is not either, and so clarity is something I cherish.
Steve wrote:It is though the eight word sentence “He did not fly with the Condor Legion” that has caused most upset. Clearly you cannot fly for an organisation that is yet to be formed.
Clearly, even though I find it somewhat stupid to state that someone was not member of something that did not exist. But, equally clear, you can fly for an organization that is already formed. Hermann did fly with the Condor Legion, once it was formed. Your sentences has not a single indication of when it is intended to be effective, so I take it as an absolute, and I think that is the correct grammatical sense. If that’s correct, the sentence is not true. Had you said “He did not fly with the Condor Legion in August 1936”, or “He did not fly with the Condor Legion during his first months in Spain”, that would have been diferent.
Steve wrote:To put it into a modern context it would be like claiming Hamilton drove for the Mercedes F1 team before it was formed.
No. To put into a modern context, it would be like claiming (after Hamilton retired from F-1 racing) that Hamilton did not drive for the Mercedes F1 team because when he began racing he was a member of the Mc Laren team.
Please note that the “before it was formed” is completely lacking in your original sentence: “He did not fly with the Condor Legion.”
Or let's see, in the hypothetical cases that Hermann did arrive in Spain after the Condor Legion already was formed but did not fly with them (nor was part of it) initially, let's say for five months and then he was assigned to the Legion. In that hypothetical case, what would be the correct sentence: "Hermann went to Spain and he did not fly with the Condor Legion," "Herrmann went to Spain and he flew with the Condor Legion," both or none? I'm really, really interested in knowing the answer to this riddle.
Steve wrote:The eight word sentence was added for those (like me till I read the book) who thought that all German flyers in Spain flew with the Condor Legion.
No one argued about you motivation, but about your clarity. Those who thought that all German flyers in Spain flew with the Condor Legion may thank you for the new data, but those who thought that Herrmann flew with the Condor Legion can be confused by your words.

Steve wrote:When pulled up on what I meant I admitted “I was not clear” and I stand by those words I could have been clearer.
And I agreed with that.
Steve wrote:I also said that Herrmann was not clear and that was because he does not give a date for when he became a member of the Condor Legion.
True.
Steve wrote:What has followed I can only label as very odd with this from a post about the controversial sentence “That is literally not true. He went to Spain and he flew with the Condor Legion”. Followed by “as it was "created" later, then you are technically right, but that was not what you posted originally” but surely I did.
No, no, no. Your original statement was “Herrmann went to Spain and he did not fly with the Condor Legion”, so no, the whole he-didn’t-because-it-was-created-later argument was not in your original posts. Also, you are misquoting me by cutting the sentence where it fits you; the sentence I posted was “If your claim now is that when he arrived in Spain he did not fly with the Condor Legion at first because there was no Condor Legion then as it was "created" later, then you are technically right, but that was not what you posted originally."
Steve wrote:Followed in another post with “I never said that the contingent Herrmann was sent to Spain with in August in 1936 was part of the Condor Legion. AFAIK, it wasn't”.
That are my words and I stand by them. Is something wrong in that sentence? It was an answer to your post:
An interesting play on words but I don’t think it works. If the contingent that Herrmann was sent to Spain with in August 1936 was part of the Condor Legion it is apparent from Herrmann’s writings that he was not aware of it.
Steve wrote:My posts are then given a microscopic grammatical examination to prove what? I had already said “I was not clear” so I can only make a guess as to why but will refrain from giving an opinion.
Yes, you said that you had not been clear and I said I agreed. Then I explained why I thought you were wrong. No “microscopic grammatical examination” was undertaken at that moment. You could have let it be. But then you answered:
An interesting play on words but I don’t think it works. If the contingent that Herrmann was sent to Spain with in August 1936 was part of the Condor Legion it is apparent from Herrmann’s writings that he was not aware of it.
Well, the first sentence does look as if someone is interested in grammatical examination. The second one still puzzles me, because it has nothing to do with anything I had written previously.

And just to clarify the matter, I’m not trying to prove anything. The only facts here are that:
1) Herrmann went to Spain.
2) Herrmann flew with the Condor Legion.
As far as I can see, we both agree with that.
Steve wrote:The last post from the gentleman in question includes remarks such as "And you don't have to explain if you think that a sentence like Erich Hartmann was sent to the Eastern Front and he flew with 7./JG 52 and 9./JG 52" is false or not” very odd.
Well, it is not odd to me. AFAIK, when Hartmann was sent to the Eastem Front he flew 7./JG 52. He later flew with 9./JG 52. So we have three true sentences: “Hartmann was sent to the Eastern Front”, “Hartmann flew with 7./JG 52,” and “Hartmann flew with 9./JG 52.” I was just asking how your grammar rules are applied when there are tree sentences joined by “and” instead of just two. I’m really interested in knowing how it all works, I swear.

Steve wrote:This is all a shame because anyone reading this trivia with a poor command of English may well think twice about posting on the AHF if this is likely to happen.
I’m far more worried by the possibility that anyone with a poor command of English may well get the wrong information from the AHF.
On the other hand, what I see here is two adults that disagree about the exact meaning of a sentence. They exchange their opinions in a civilised manner, with total respect for the other one and without any intention of offending anyone. No one is forced to participate, any of them could leave the argument after having presented its position on the matter. So what is the problem, what may make anyone think twice about posting on AHF?
Anyway, I have seen far worse here and AHF seems to be doing ok.

Regards.

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Steve
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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Steve » 09 Jun 2020 23:40

I think we have now moved from very odd to very bizarre.

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Ironmachine
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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Ironmachine » 10 Jun 2020 07:20

Steve wrote:I think we have now moved from very odd to very bizarre.
I'm just following your path. :lol:

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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Steve » 10 Jun 2020 23:17

Thinking about this nonsense over a cup of great British tea and some digestive biscuits (something not available over most of the EU) I came to the conclusion that this constant posting constitutes obsessive behaviour. If after reaching this conclusion I were to continue then I would be obsessive over the matter. This will be my last post on a subject that has departed so far from my original post that I now have no idea what it is about. I depart happy in the knowledge that I was able to successfully hold the moral high ground.

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Re: Were German soldiers ever sent to Spain as punishment?

Post by Ironmachine » 11 Jun 2020 07:42

Steve wrote:Thinking about this nonsense over a cup of great British tea and some digestive biscuits (something not available over most of the EU)
In the immortal words of "El Gallo", «hay gente pa tó», but that is not my cup of tea (literally?). And yeah, I admit that I don't like tea, but I know a fair number of tea lovers that think that "great British tea" is an oxymoron.
Steve wrote:I came to the conclusion that this constant posting constitutes obsessive behaviour.
This constant posting? You mean yours, obviously.
Steve wrote:If after reaching this conclusion I were to continue then I would be obsessive over the matter.
Already looked as if you were.
Steve wrote:This will be my last post on a subject that has departed so far from my original post that I now have no idea what it is about.
I have explained it very carefully, but I suppose there's a limit to what somebody can understand.
Steve wrote:I depart happy in the knowledge that I was able to successfully hold the moral high ground.
The fact that you think there is a moral high ground to be held in this matter certainly explains everything that happened here.

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