Highest NSDAP Rank Holders: Dienstleiter-Hauptbefehlsleiter

Discussions on all aspects of the NSDAP, the other party organizations and the government. Hosted by Michael Miller & Igor Karpov.
Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 20 Oct 2009 05:14

-Can anyone explain to me why it is that most stellvertreter Gauleiters held a Befehlsleiter NSDAP rank (not all of them ,but a good number held the Befehlsleiter rank)? I wonder why stellvertreter Gauleiter was not an NSDAP rank? Any thoughts on this subject is very much appreciated!!!

Pitino

Mark Costa
Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: 26 Jul 2002 17:41
Location: USA

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Mark Costa » 20 Oct 2009 12:41

Pitino:

The only "ranks" and positions that were melded into one were Gauleiter and Reichsleiter. The "rank" of deputy gauleiter of course was done away with in the new 1939 structure. Here again Martin Bormann raises his ugly head. Many of the deputy gauleiters at this time were Old Fighters. Bormann with Hess' approval, was trying to replace these men with younger men who were more allied with the Deputy Fuhrer's Office (ie. Bormann).

It was also at this time that a new Fuhrer Directive was issued stating that a Deputy Gauleiter could NOT succeed to the gauleitership in his own gau. A nice way of making sure these old fighters did not become gauleiters in the future.
These younger men, whom Bormann was looking to for the future,did not have seniority in the rank structure. Hence that is why many Deputy Gauleiters held ranks lower than Befehlsleiter. They were relatively "new" and did not have years seniority and a high pay grade. The old fighters did !!

Another Befehlsleiter was Karl Holz -- I do not believe you have him on your lists. Of course he later received his gauleitership in late 1944, but for almost three years as acting Gauleiter, he held the Befehlsleiter rank.

I have photos of Helmut Friedrichs as a Oberbefehlsleiter as early as summer 1941.

Add Georg Leibbrandt to the list of Oberbefehlsleiter.

Mark Costa

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 20 Oct 2009 17:22

Mark,
-Thanks again for the outstanding info!!! Bormann was like an NSDAP octopuss!!! He had his tentacles on every part of the Party structure. It seems as if he was the real Deputy Fuhrer and Rudolf Hess was just his pet signing everything that Bormann put in front of him. Hess must not have been like a lot of the upper NSDAP-echelon (i.e. masters of intrigue) or he would have gotten rid of Bormann before his power base was so strong!!! I bet all the alte-kampfers really hated Bormann. I know that he personally got rid of Wilhelm Bruckner and later had Heinrich Hoffmann (one of Hitler's oldest compatriates) pretty much exiled to Austria. I am not positive, but I am pretty sure he made it so that Hoffmann wasn't even allowed to step foot in the Reich Chancellery or even Berlin for that matter!! All because of his jealousy!!! Could you imagine being Walter Buch and having Bormann for a son in law. Wow!! Thanks again for your info!!!

Pitino

Mark Costa
Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: 26 Jul 2002 17:41
Location: USA

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Mark Costa » 20 Oct 2009 20:32

Pitino:

You summed it up real well there on Bormann. Hess was pretty much incorruptable and very even handed without any real ambition. He operated as Deputy Führer based on what was right for the party. It was Bormann as his Chief of Staff that wanted to create the central power within Hess' area of influence. Ley as Reichsorganisationleiter was always trying to take duties and responsibilities away from the office of the Deputy Führer. Bormann made sure that never happened. Then he managed to get himself assigned as Hess' liaison to Fuhrer's HQ -- that is why Bormann was always in attendance to Hitler even long before the war. He very systematically push Hess aside. And then when Hess left -- he still managed to take over his office -- although Hitler conveniently changed the name to Chief of the Party Chancellery as the other Reichsleiters were complaining that Bormann as Hess' Stabsleiter, should not be made Deputy Führer. So Hitler changed the title to appease the others.

The old Party Members hated his guts -- Adolf Wagner, Wahl, Burckel, Kaufmann, Bouhler, Rosenberg, Frank, Frick etc.
And of course Buch himself was at odds with him from about 1937 onwards. They really hated eachother with a passion - not only for party issues but just the way Bormann treated Buch's daughter.

Bormann was always cultivating the younger men to rid himself of these "stupid" Alte Kämpfer. That's why men like Wegener, Hoffmann, Gerland, Stohr, Greiser, Lauterbacher, Scheel were made gauleiters. Also, men like Wilhelm Schepmann of the SA and Erwin Kraus of the NSKK were Bormann men. And of course his close friendship with Himmler during the war did not hurt Bormann either.

Mark

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 21 Oct 2009 04:57

Mark Costa wrote:Pitino:

You summed it up real well there on Bormann. Hess was pretty much incorruptable and very even handed without any real ambition. He operated as Deputy Führer based on what was right for the party. It was Bormann as his Chief of Staff that wanted to create the central power within Hess' area of influence. Ley as Reichsorganizationleiter was always trying to take duties and responsibilities away from the office of the Deputy Führer. Bormann made sure that never happened. Then he managed to get himself assigned as Hess' liaison to Fuhrer's HQ -- that is why Bormann was always in attendance to Hitler even long before the war. He very systematically push Hess aside. And then when Hess left -- he still managed to take over his office -- although Hitler conveniently changed the name to Chief of the Party Chancellery as the other Reichsleiters were complaining that Bormann as Hess' Stabsleiter, should not be made Deputy Führer. So Hitler changed the title to appease the others.

The old Party Members hated his guts -- Adolf Wagner, Wahl, Bürckel, Kaufmann, Bouhler, Rosenberg, Frank, Frick etc.
And of course Buch himself was at odds with him from about 1937 onwards. They really hated eachother with a passion - not only for party issues but just the way Bormann treated Buch's daughter.

Bormann was always cultivating the younger men to rid himself of these "stupid" Alte Kämpfer. That's why men like Wegener, Hoffmann, Gerland, Stohr, Greiser, Lauterbacher, Scheel were made Gauleiter. Also, men like Wilhelm Schepmann of the SA and Erwin Kraus of the NSKK were Bormann men. And of course his close friendship with Himmler during the war did not hurt Bormann either.

Mark
Mark,
-Great info as usual!! I think the other Reichsleiters had a legitimate beef with Hitler when it came to Bormann taking the title of Deputy Fuhrer after Hess. Because, didn't you state that it was Bormann himself who got Hitler to sign the Decree stating that no Deputy Gauleiter could succeede to the rank of Gauleiter of their own Gau. I don't know if that Decree was applicable in the Deputy Führer situation, but it did give the other Reichsleiter a leg to stand on. That is more than likely why Hitler changed the title as you stated!!

Pitino

Mark Costa
Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: 26 Jul 2002 17:41
Location: USA

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Mark Costa » 21 Oct 2009 12:11

Pitino:

The Reichsleiter's dissatisfaction with the appointment of Bormann to the Party Chancellery had more to do with the fact that they felt that Bormann, as Hess' Stableiter, must have known about the flight to England. Hence Bormann is a traitor and how can the Fuhrer appoint a traitor to take the place of another traitor? This was their logic when the announcement was made. I believe Hitler had already sensed this and that is why a new title was chosen and the "Deputy Fuhrer" title abolished. Bormann certainly wielded more power than Hess ever did. By 1941 most of the Reichsleiters and gauleiters had figured out Bormann's game and were very fearful of him becoming their boss.

Mark

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 21 Oct 2009 17:18

Mark Costa wrote:Pitino:

The Reichsleiter's dissatisfaction with the appointment of Bormann to the Party Chancellery had more to do with the fact that they felt that Bormann, as Hess' Stableiter, must have known about the flight to England. Hence Bormann is a traitor and how can the Fuhrer appoint a traitor to take the place of another traitor? This was their logic when the announcement was made. I believe Hitler had already sensed this and that is why a new title was chosen and the "Deputy Fuhrer" title abolished. Bormann certainly wielded more power than Hess ever did. By 1941 most of the Reichsleiters and gauleiters had figured out Bormann's game and were very fearful of him becoming their boss.

Mark
Mark,
It is hard to believe that Bormann new nothing about the Hess flight!!! Wasn't one of Hess's main adjutants jailed for his supposed knowledge of the Hess flight and then shipped off to fight in the war (I can't recall his name right now). Truth to be known it was probably Bormann who was secretly convincing Hess to make the crazy flight, but it will be some time before we know the full truth behind the Hess flight. I think the British Government is going to release the Hess files in 2046 or some year around there. Anyway, thanks for your collaboration!!!

Pitino

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 24 Oct 2009 00:06

-Anyone know why Oberbefehlsleiter Dr. Fritz Todt was never made a Reichsleiter? Albert Speer pretty much inherited all of Todt's positions and was never made a Reichsleiter as well, but in Speer's case you can kind of understand why he did not get the rank. Bormann was all too powerful by February 1942 and he more than likely kept Speer from the Reichsleiter rank, but Todt had achieved a lot of his power and influence before Bormann was so strong. So, why wasn't he promoted to the rank of Reichsleiter? I am pretty sure he was in Hitler's good graces and he did hold a number of offices. If anyone can enlighten me on this topic then please message away!!!

Pitino

Mark Costa
Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: 26 Jul 2002 17:41
Location: USA

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Mark Costa » 24 Oct 2009 04:26

Pitino:

It really was a matter of not being in charge of a Reichsleitung main office. Both men headed Haupt- or Amtleiter offices with the Reichsleitung but neither was in charge of a full department. Hence they were not eligible to be promoted to Reichsleiter. Maybe as time went on a new full department would have been created for them -- but doubtful. Their positions really did not warrant a full department at that point in time. Of course their real power came from their Governmental positions as Reichsministers. The party offices were minimal to say the least. The Reichsleiters were in charge of the party main offices and neither man was in a position to head any of the ones that existed. And as I stated before the these offices were slowly being eliminated by Bormann anyway. Both men certainly were major players but really on the national governmental stage and not within the NSDAP itself. Sort of like Göring. He held no NSDAP office at all !!! All his offices were at the national or governmental level.

Mark

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 25 Oct 2009 03:46

Mark Costa wrote:Pitino:

It really was a matter of not being in charge of a Reichsleitung main office. Both men headed Haupt- or Amtlseiter offices with the Reichsleitung but neither was in charge of a full department. Hence they were not eligible to be promoted to Reichsleiter. Maybe as time went on a new full department would have been created for them -- but doubtful. Their positions really did not warrant a full department at that point in time. Of course their real power came from their Governmental positions as Reichsministers. The party offices were minimal to say the least. The Reichsleiters were in charge of the party main offices and neither man was in a position to head any of the ones that existed. And as I stated before the these offices were slowly being eliminated by Bormann anyway. Both men certainly were major players but really on the national governmental stage and not within the NSDAP itself. Sort of like Göring. He held no NSDAP office at all !!! All his offices were at the national or governmental level.

Mark
Mark,
- Thanks for clearing that little matter up for me!!!!

Pitino

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 25 Oct 2009 03:51

-I have found a couple more NSDAP-members to hold the rank of Hauptdienstleiter. Although, one only held the rank for a short time. Paul Giesler held the rank of Hauptdienstleiter in der Partei-Kanzlei from (August 1940-November 1941). He held the rank before being promoted to the Gauleiter of Westfalen-Sud in November 1941. The other man was Otto Gohdes and his appointment date may have been in 1943, but I am unsure. If anyone has his appointment date then please post it.

Pitino

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 26 Oct 2009 11:22

- I am pretty sure Viktor Brack held the NSDAP-rank of Oberdienstleiter. Can anyone confirm this for me or give me the appointment date for him? Thanks!!!!

Pitino

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 29 Oct 2009 04:23

Mark,
- I asked earlier why Fritz Todt or Albert Speer was never promoted to Reichsleiter rank. You said that neither one of them headed a department which I agree with totally, but something has caught my attention. I know that Konstantin Hierl headed the RAD, but I have seen him listed as a Reichsleiter without Party Office. I wonder why he was promoted to Reichsleiter without having any attachment to the Hauptamter or Amter. Do you have any thoughts on this?

Pitino

Mark Costa
Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: 26 Jul 2002 17:41
Location: USA

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Mark Costa » 29 Oct 2009 12:31

Hierl was the Reichsarbietfuhrer RAD -- an independant organization of the NSDAP like the SA, SS NSKK etc. Hence his equal status with Himmler, Lutze etc.

Mark

Pitino
Member
Posts: 1859
Joined: 24 Dec 2008 08:58
Location: Elizabethtown, Kentucky

Re: Reich Hauptdienstleiter

Post by Pitino » 29 Oct 2009 17:50

Mark Costa wrote:Hierl was the Reichsarbietfuhrer RAD -- an independant organization of the NSDAP like the SA, SS NSKK etc. Hence his equal status with Himmler, Lutze etc.

Mark
Mark,
-Thanks for the info!!! As Head of the RAD he was on equal footing with Huhnlein, Himmler, Lutze, and Ley. Why wasn't the Head of the NSFK (Christiansen) given the Reichsleiter rank? Maybe because he was subordinate to the Air Ministry. Thanks again!!!

Pitino

Return to “NSDAP, other party organizations & Government”