Romanian Generals

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Victor
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Post by Victor » 22 Sep 2002 10:51

My grandfather was recalled in the army after one year in a farm, mostly because they lacked competent teachers for the new officers. For a while in the 50s and 60s, the majority of high ranking officers and generals were absolute morons (some did not even have 4 grades). An d yes my grandfather was on the Eastern front only in 1941, so he did not have too many ties with "T". But many air force officers also did not have any ties with "T" and they were also imprisoned. I don't think that this was the primary reason. there were others too.

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Victor
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Re: Did any escape to the West?

Post by Victor » 22 Sep 2002 10:52

The Desert Fox wrote:Did any senior Romanian officers suceed in escaping to the west and out of the hands of the communists who came into power? Some foreigners who fought for the Axis escaped to Spain or central america for example. Did any senior Romanian officers have similiar luck in finding a new life in another country?

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The Desert Fox


A good example for this would be brig. gen. Platon Chirnoaga who was the CO of the 4th Infantry Division in late 1944 when he was captured by the Germans. He became the leader of the "National Army" of the Romanian Vienna iron Guard government. He fled to Spain (IIRC) after the war.

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johnny_bi
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Post by johnny_bi » 18 Oct 2002 12:55

Hugo Schwab killed himself while being disarmed by russians few days after August 23, 1944 when Romania have changed sides ...

BI

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Victor
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Post by Victor » 18 Oct 2002 20:00

The fact that he was a German ethnic meant that his fate was sealed. This is why he chose to take his own life than to let the Soviets humiliate him.

But almost all of the Romanian generals had a miserable fate.
For example, Leonard Mociulschi, who was relieved of command of the 3rd Mountain Division in April 1945, after leading his unit for quite a few years with very much success, was arrested as he arrived home and put on trial by the "People's Court", which eventually found him not guilty and acquitted him after one year, in May 1946.
At 58 years (of which 40 spent in the army) he was put into the reserve and had to search for a way to feed his family. In 1948, he was arrested by the Communist authorities and thrown in jail, for no reason. In 1955 he was set free, but had again to take up humiliating jobs to earn his living. He died in 1979.

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Victor
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More details on Nicolae Dascalescu

Post by Victor » 07 Jan 2003 08:25

General de corp de armata Nicolae Dascalescu is one of my favorites. Of poor peasant origin, Dascalescu was born on 29 June 1884 near Piatra Neamt. With great financial effort he went to the Artillery, Engineer and Navy Officer School between 1906 and 1908 and graduated the third out of 30 student, with the rank of 2nd lieutenant. In 1911 he was promoted to lieutenant and during the Second Balkan War he commanded a battery of the 8th Artillery Regiment. Promoted to captain (again before term) he fought as a battery commander in the 4th Artillery Regiment in 1916 and 1917. In September 1917 he was given command of an artillery battalion and also received the rank of major. With this unit he participated in the 1919 campaign in Hungary. In 1921 he was admitted in the Military Academy. In 1923, after graduating, he was promoted to lt. colonel and in 1929 to colonel. In 1931 he was given the command of the 1st AAA Regiment and in 1933 was named chief of staff of the 3rd Corps. In 1936 he was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and named commander of the 12th Artillery Brigade. In October 1937 he is also named general secretary of the Ministry of Defense. But because of his integrity and "ruthlessness" when it came to the army's contracts with its suppliers, he was forced to resign. Gen. Dascalescu was reassigned to the 1st AAA Brigade until August 1939 when he was named CO of the 25th Infantry Division.

In June 1940 he was promoted to the rank of maj. general and moved to the 20th Infantry Division. In June 1941 he took over the 21st Infantry Division.. This unit which was engaged in some heavy fighting near Tiganca, in Bessarabia, where, even though it had been reduced to almost four battalions, it held out against two Soviet divisions. He was always in the first line and personally lead several counterattacks. During the battle, Antonescu and some of his staff visited the division and decorated Dascalescu with the prestigious Mihai Viteazu Order 3rd class. Apparently, Antonescu took off his own MV order (received during WWI) and gave it to the general. Dascalescu was in fact the first Romanian officer this distinction during WWII (after Antonescu got the 2nd and 1st class). The 21st Infantry Division's battle flag was also decorated with this award.

He was then reassigned as CO of the 2nd Corps, with which he took part in the battle of Stalingrad. Dascalescu was also promoted to the rank of lt. general. His corps was part of the 3rd Army and had to defend a front 35 km long, beyond the possibilities of its two divisions. However, the 2nd Corps resisted to some local Soviet attacks in October, managing to repulse each one. But the bug Soviet offensive on 19 November was too much. One of the corps divisions suffered the brunt of the assault. What was left of it was surrounded. The 2nd Corps took part in the attempt to stop the attack on the line of the river Chir, but without success. It was sent back to Romania in early 1943 and remained in defense on the seaside and of the southern frontier.

After 23 August it took about 10,500 German prisoners. The corps was sent to take part in the campaign against the Axis as part of the 4th Army and it fought in Transylvania. There it won the first bridge head over the river Mures and saw the heaviest fighting of the campaign. The corps continued its advance into present-day Hungary after it had occupied the last Transylvanian town in German and Hungarian hands on 26 October. At the end of 1944 and beginning of 1945 his corps was in Slovakia. He also received the Mihai Viteazu Order 3rd class with swords. That is when my grand-father met him, when he was assigned to the corps general staff.

Dascalescu was then named CO of the 4th Army, instead of Avramescu who was suspected of collaborating with the Germans. But the relations between the Romanian general and marshal Malinovsky worsened after the Soviets claimed the victory at Roznava as theirs and Dascalescu protested. But his return to the 2nd Corps was short lived as Avramescu was arrested for a supposed planning of a mass desertion to the German side. He was again named CO of the 4th Army with which he played a major role in the Battle for Banska Bystrica in March 1945. The end of the war found the 4th Army on the way to Brno, in eastern Bohemia. Lt. General Dascalescu was always in the first line, even as an army commander and, as many officers who served under him said, he generated a lot of confidence around him. The ordinary infantryman loved him, especially for his care for their needs. Thus the nickname "the general-soldier".

On 1 June 1945 he was relived of command and retired. His hostile attitude towards the new political officers and the Communists in general was the main reason. This was the end of a 39 year career under arms, of which 10 during wartime, during which he dedicated himself to the army. He had no wife, no kids. He returned to his village where he still had a small piece of land (about 7 ha) and started to work it together with his brother's family. But on 9 September 1946 was arrested and then put on trial as a "war criminal", but by the end of the month the court dismissed the accusations and cleared his name. But the harassing continued and in November 1948 his pension was suspended and some of his properties were confiscated. Three years later he was arrested for "agricultural sabotage" and thrown in the Jilava prison without a trial. After several years the trial finally started and he was released on 5 October 1955. He moved in Piatra Neamt, where he had a niece. In 1956 he started again to receive his pension. Later he was promoted to the rank of general (as it should have been done much earlier), but he constantly refused to co-operate with the Ministry of Defense on the occasion of different commemorations and books. He passed away in his sleep on 28 September 1969. He was buried with all the military honors and over 10,000 people attended the ceremony.

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Ike_FI
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Post by Ike_FI » 09 Jan 2003 18:20

Hi,
I posted this picture earlier on MiHist forum, but as the site is still offline, here it comes again as it might be of interest to you. I scanned it from a 1925 issue of Suomen Kuvalehti magazine. The picture was taken during an international high staff officer's course in France.

The caption tells that the next man left of General Commander of Paris (in white coat in front row) is Gen. Dimitrescu, the deputy of chief of Rumanian General Staff.

Some other names mentioned are Zenkavicius (LI), Ostraskij (PL), Wikama (FI), Wozenelek (CZ), Bey (TR), Girwood and Thorpe (GB), as far as I can read from the scanned picture (the original is elsewhere at the moment
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

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Victor
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Much, much more details on lt. gen. Nicolae Sova

Post by Victor » 17 Feb 2003 17:10

General de corp de armata Nicolae Sova was born on 9 November 1885, at Poduri, in Moldavia. After five years in the school from his village, he went to high school at Bacau [in Romania, in that period the high school had 8 grades]. Because of the modest financial possibilities of his family, after three years he had to start earning his living, in order to stay in school. In 1907 he was admitted in the Infantry Officers School in Bucharest. On 1 July 1911 he graduated and was promoted to the rank of 2nd lt. At his request he was assigned to the 27th Infantry Regiment at Bacau, close to home. But From October 1911 to July 1912 he was sent to the Special Infantry School, which he finished the 29th out of 223. On 30 October 1912 he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant. During the 2nd Balkan War he was the assistant of the regiment's CO and did his job so well, that he was proposed for promotion before term. However, this will happen only in 1916, on 1 November. Romania had only recently joined WWI and the situation was very difficult. He was then named CO of the regiment's machine-gun company and distinguished himself in the desperate battles in January 1917, when his company proved decisive. Again his CO proposed a promotion before term. In march 1917 he was named commander of the Machine-Gun School of the 2nd Army. Until the end of July he had trained over 200 machine-gun sections. In August he was assigned to the Operation Bureau of the 7th infantry Division. One month later he was promoted to the rank of major. During the campaign in Transylvania and Hungary in late 1918 and 1919 he was the chief of the Operations Bureau of the same division. He was then assigned to the Intelligence Bureau of the 6th Corps.

In the autumn of 1919 he was finally admitted in the Military Academy. He finished in 1921 and was the 38th out of 72. After his superiors proposed a promotion seven times, he finally received it on 10 May 1925. In 1927 he was named CO of a battalion in the 83rd Infantry Regiment, but in 1928 he returned to administrative work in the 6th Corps, as the CO's assistant.. In 1931 he took over the 83rd Infantry Regiment. Col. Nicolae Sova (promoted to this rank on 1 April 1932) remained at its command until December 1934, when he entered the diplomatic corps as a military attaché at the embassy in Vienna. For three years he stayed in the Austrian capital. Upon his return he was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and named CO of the 20th Infantry Brigade until 1 February 1939. On 6 February he was reassigned to administrative work in the Ministry of Defense, as the head of the Personnel Bureau. After gen. Ion Antonescu came to power in September 1940, he began a reorganization of the armed forces. Thus, on 10 January 1941, brig. gen. Nicolae Sova was named CO of the elite Guard Division. He remained in this position until 20 March 1943.

After Operation Barbarossa was launched, the Guard Division had the mission to secure a bridgehead over the river Prut, in the area opposite of Falciu. The attack commenced on 4 July, but because of the powerful Soviet resistance, backed by a large concentration of artillery (about 19 artillery battalions on 6 km of front) it was stopped. The intervention of the 21st Infantry Division (see gen. Nicolae Dascalescu above) helped the Guard Division brake the defense and advance on 6 July. Between 7 and 11 July the two divisions expanded the bridgehead, an action which was, however, very costly. On 12 July the Romanian troops were strongly counterattacked, but with the help of the Romanian bombers which dropped 37 tons of bombs on Red Army concentrations and artillery positions in the area, they managed to resist. The Soviet assault lasted until 14 July. Two days later the Guard Division started its offensive and by 19 July, the Battle of Tiganca was over. The Guard Division had suffered 2,743 casualties.

The offensive continued and soon the Guard Division was engaged in the Battle of Odessa, where it distinguished itself in August in the fights near Kagarlik, by braking the front of the Soviet 25th Rifle Division. Then it participated in the assault on Dalnik, brig. gen. Nicolae Sova's skilled maneuvering being again remarked by his superiors. On 16 October, when Odessa fell to the Romanian troops, he among the first elements of the Guard Division to enter the city.

Thus ended the first campaign of the gen. Sova. It lasted 118 days, of which 75 of fighting and 34 of marching. The casualties were high: 359 officers, 123 NCOs, 8,134 soldiers (1,639 dead, 6850 wounded and 167 missing). The division took 4,500 POWs and captured 2,800 rifles, 113 LMGs, 100 HMGs, 49 artillery pieces, 7 tanks and 30 trucks. Brig. gen. Nicolae Sova was awarded the Mihai Viteazu Order 3rd class.

The Guard Division returned to Romania, where it remained until the end of the war. On 24 January 1942 he was promoted to the rank of maj. gen. After one year, gen. Nicolae Sova was relieved of command and named undersecretary of Navy on 19 February 1943. He proved to be a very good organizer of the limited resources available. On 24 January 1944 he was again promoted, in recognition of his capabilities.

After 23 August 1944 he requested to be assigned to a command position on the front. On 22 September he was named CO of the 7th Corps (19th Infantry Division and 9th Cavalry Division), which was part in the 1st Army. Between 11 and 14 October, the Corps created a large bridgehead over the river Tisza 30 km wide and 7-8 km deep. However, it had to abandon it, following a German-Hungarian counter offensive which forced the 2nd Ukrainian Front to move the 7th Corps in order to stop the enemy advance. At the end of the month the offensive towards Budapest could be continued. The corps was reinforced with the 2nd Infantry Division and reached the first defensive positions outside the Hungarian capital on 18 November. By New Year's Eave gen. Nicoale Sova's troops fought their way to the outskirts of Budapest, through the fortifications and despite many powerful counterattacks.

Inside Budapest, the 7th Corps advanced 11 km, managing to get only 2 km away from the Danube in two weeks of ferocious street fighting. One by one the Hippodrome, the Central Post Office, the Franz Josef Barracks, the Eastern Rail Station and the Kerepes Cemetery fell to the Romanian troops. The presence of gen. Sova in the first line, where the situation demanded, was something usual. On 26 December 1944, for example, his mantel was pierced by two bullets, during a counterattack.

On 16 January the corps was pulled out of its positions and sent to Slovakia. General Nicolae Sova was very irritated and protested vehemently:
The officers and the soldiers of the 7th Corps, who fought and bled next to the allied troops from the crossing of the Tisa and up to the middle of Budapest, are depressed by the fact that with the pending collapse of Budapest they are sent to another sector. They interpret this as their underserved removal from the honor to fight until the end of the operations in Budapest, considering that they have been used by the allies only in the difficult moments of the battle when they gave their unconditional assistance marked by the number of graves of their comrades killed in action in these fights and they are removed when the moment of victory, of reward and honor is near.

The corps suffered 10,708 casualties out of 36,348 soldiers in Operation Budapest, but it had captured approximately 7,000 POWs and caused casualties to the enemy.

He was obviously relieved of command soon after this, on 7 February 1945. He had just received the Mihai Viteazu Order 3rd class with swords in January. On 24 March he was retired. Thus ended his 38 year long military career.

He was arrested in January 1946, along with other former members of Antonescu's government, who were still free. However, he was accused only on 24 September, nine months later and put on trial on 15 December 1947, two years later! He was sentenced to ten years of prison, but the two which he had already served were taken into consideration. Thus, in January 1956 he walked out of the infamous Aiud prison. He was in a terrible condition and had Parkinson. In 1948 his pension had been suspended and his house was confiscated. After many petitions, he started receiving it again in 1964.

He passed away on 12 March 1966 and was buried with all the military honors in the Ghencea-Militar Cemetery in Bucharest, next to gen. Constantin Argeseanu.

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Post by John Toner » 11 Aug 2003 16:07

Why am I only able to view three of the pictures displayed here and not all of them? Most simply give the the un-viewable symbol of a small white box containing a red X. Am I missing something?

Jojn

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Victor
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Post by Victor » 11 Aug 2003 16:12

Simply because I have deleted my old site.

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Re: Romanian Generals

Post by AlifRafikKhan » 26 Oct 2017 01:27

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