Final Wehrmacht commands

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

Final Wehrmacht commands

Post by Ezboard » 29 Sep 2002 12:48

Doug Batson
Unregistered User
(4/6/00 2:10:54 pm)
Reply Final Wehrmacht commands
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I am just wondering what the composition of the higher commands of the Wehrmacth (West, North, South) was during the last month of the war. My understanding is that in the west, once Army Group B was encircled in the Ruhr pocket and surrendered, Army Group H in Holland was upgraded to OB Northwest in April 1945. This was because this headquarters was almost cut off from OB West. It was commanded by Busch. Similarly, the 25th Army in the same area was renamed
Fortress Holland. I believe Army Group G concluded their own separate peace negotiation about the same time. Also, at the end of April, I believe that OKH was disbanded and OKW took control of operations on all fronts.

I believe that after this happened, and with Germany knowing that it was going to be split in half (northern and southern halves), OKW decided to move the headquarters of OB West (which by now I believe was in the Harz mountains area) south. Upon doing so, it was renamed OB Sud (still
under Kesselring). OB Nordwest, still in the Holland area,was renamed OB North (unclear about this) and was initiatlly under Donitz (until he succeeded Hitler) and then Busch. So thus, Germany was controlled by an OB North and an OB South. Other new commands that sprung up in the area included Oberbefehlshaber Schleswig-Holstein, AOK Lindemann and AOK Muller. (any information on them would be helpful).

If I left anything out, please fill in the details as I don't know if the above information is accurate. I know it was a confusing time at this stage in the war.

Thanks,



Gareth Collins
Unregistered User
(4/6/00 11:31:28 pm)
Reply OB's
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OB Süd-West (Army of Liguria, 14. Armee, 10. Armee) also known as Heeresgruppe C finished the war in northern Italy.
OB Süd-Ost (XCVII. Armeekorps; XV. Gebirgs-Korps; XXI. Gebirgs-Korps; XXXIV. Armeekorps; XCI. Armeekorps; XV. SS-Kossaken-Kavallerie-Korps; LXIX. Armeekorps; Cmdnt East Aegean; Cmdnt Kreta) also known as Heeresgruppe E finished the war in Croatia.
OB Nord-West (25. Armee; 1. Fallschirm-Armee) finished in Holland.
OB West (11. Armee) finished in the Ruhr Pocket.

Regards,
gfc

Doug Batson
Unregistered User
(4/11/00 3:29:26 pm)
Reply Final Commands
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Thanks Gareth, I've been doing a lot of digging and I've read that OB Nordwest was in fact renamed OB Nord in the last days of the war (still under Busch). Additionally, OB West (Commanded by Albert Kesselring from 10 March 1945 to 1 May 1945) was moved south and renamed OB Sud on May 2, 1945. It was used to command northern Italy and Austria and capitulated on May 8, 1945.

Additinally, at the same time OKW itself split into two commands (one for the northern and southern areas of the western front). Kesseling, besides commanding OB Sud, also commanded the southern zone. Admiral Donitz commanded the northern zone.

Only Army Group B and its subordinate commands were captured in the Ruhr pocket at the end of April 1945. OB West HQs at the time was outside the pocket. The 11 Army was trapped in the Harz pocket further east. The 12th Army, originally intended to break Army Group B out of the Ruhr was told to reverse itself and come to the rescure of Berlin. It finished just south of the city in a pocket formed when it linked up with the 9th Army fighting its way west.

Also during these last days, Hitler was creating new armies with little or no subordinate troops just to confuse the enemy. I believe AOK Lindemann was created for this purpose. It was only the new name for the Wehrmachtbefehlshaber Denmark. Also AOK Muller appears on maps that I have at home and this seems to be the same kind of thing. The same thing applies to the 24th Army which actually had only one division under its command. The 25th Army in Holland was renamed "Fortress Holland" with the 1st Parachute Army subordinate.

Gareth, of course this is open to speculation, but this what I've come across so far in my research...

Respectfully,

Doug Batson

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