Friedrich Freiherr Kress von Kressenstein

Discussions on the final era of the Ottoman Empire, from the Young Turk Revolution of 1908 until the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923.
User avatar
Bill Woerlee
Member
Posts: 487
Joined: 06 Dec 2006 04:52
Location: Canberra

Friedrich Freiherr Kress von Kressenstein

Post by Bill Woerlee » 28 Oct 2007 08:54

Mates

There is a thread about Friedrich Freiherr Kress von Kressenstein at this location:

viewtopic.php?t=44477

Folks will notice that I have added some further information - especially his role in suppressing Hitler's Beer Hall Putsch of 1923.

I am wondering if it is possible for a copy of this thread to be moved to this specific forum, bearing in mind the impact Kress had upon the Ottoman forces as opposed to those of Imperial Germany.

Cheers

Bill

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 10:59

Bill,this is the best I can do.

JohnW
Member


Joined: 14 Apr 2002
Location: California
Tue Mar 02, 2004 5:11 am
Post subject: Kress von Kressenstein
All,

I am looking for information concerning this chap. I know that he served with the Turks during the war, but what did he do before and after? What ranks did he achieve ad whatwhat decoration was he awarded? Thanks.

John

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:00

Kaan Caglar
Member


Joined: 11 Jul 2003
Location: Izmir,Turkey
Tue Mar 02, 2004 4:26 pm
Post subject:
Hello John,
Quote:
Friedrich Kress von Kressenstein (1870-1948), a Bavarian born artillery-officer, formed a part of Liman von Saunders' military mission to Turkey in January 1914, and spent the majority of the war in the service of the Ottoman Empire.
With the formal Ottoman alliance with Germany in August 1914 - mere months away from Turkey's formal entry into the war - Kressenstein was appointed military adviser to Djemal Pasha, Fourth Army commander.
It was Kressenstein who advocated and disastrously planned the wholly unsuccessful attack on the Suez Canal in January 1915 which opened hostilities on the Palestine Front, damaging Djemal's reputation rather than his own.
Recovering somewhat in stature as a consequence of his successful defence in Sinai at the head of the so-called 'Desert Force', notably at Romani and El Arish in 1916, Kressenstein was subsequently posted to the defence of the garrison at Gaza.
In March and April 1917 Kressenstein led the successful defence of Gaza during the First and Second Battles of Gaza, although he came close to defeat on the first occasion, almost certainly being saved as a consequence of inept command decisions made by his British counterpart, General Sir Charles Dobell.
The British failure at Gaza directly led to the removal of both Dobell (by region Commander-in-Chief Sir Archibald Murray) and of Murray himself (by British Prime Minister David Lloyd George). Sir Philip Chetwode replaced Dobell and Sir Edmund Allenby arrived to take up Murray's position. Kressenstein meanwhile was awarded the Pour le Merite for his actions on 4 September 1917.
Allenby immediately proved a more resourceful and formidable opponent. Having prepared in great secrecy he unleashed the Third Battle of Gaza at the end of October 1917 that secured the British breakthrough in Palestine and led to the fall of Jerusalem in early December.
Replaced in command at Gaza on 5 November 1917 by former German Chief of Staff Erich Falkenhayn, Kressenstein was given command of the Turkish Eighth Army in defence of the coastal sector of the front until the summer of 1918, when he was transferred to command a German military mission in the Caucasus.
He returned to Germany with the end of the war in 1919, remaining in the army until his retirement as Lieutenant General in 1929.
He died in Munich in 1948.

Image
Both the picture and info taken from here
Best Regards
Kaan

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:02

Stauffenberg II
Member


Joined: 03 Jan 2003
Location: Austria
Thu Mar 04, 2004 1:44 pm
Post subject:
Hi John & Kaan!

Some minor data to add:

24.04.1870-06.04.1948 (thanks to AJK)

Friedrich Freiherr Kreß von Kressenstein took over the command of 7th (GE) Division in March, 1924 (from Gen. Lt. Otto von Lossow).

01.04.1924-31.12.1927: 7th (GE) Division, München
01.01.1928-30.11.1929: (GE) Group 2*, Kassel

* actually a Corps Command

ret.: 30.11.1929

Unfortunately I don´t know when he was promoted Gen. d. Art. (3-Star-General) but he was.

Now the strange part: All retired full 3-Star-Generals (Supreme Commanders, Group Commanders) were included in the German rank lists (honorarily). But not Kreß. I have the 1931 and the 1932 edition and he is the only guy missing. I have no explanation, why he didn´t receive that honor.

His impressive award list (thanks to USAF1986):

· Kingdom of Prussia, Order pour le merite (04.09.1917)
· Kingdom of Prussia, Red Eagle-Order, 4th Class with Crown
· Kingdom of Prussia, Crown-Order, 2nd Class with Swords
· Kingdom of Prussia, House-Order of Hohenzollern, Knight’s Cross (with Swords)
· Kingdom of Prussia, Iron Cross 1st and 2nd Class
· Kingdom of Bavaria, Military-Max Joseph-Order, Commander´s Cross
· Kingdom of Bavaria, Military-Merit Order, Officer´s Cross
· Kingdom of Saxony, Albert-Order, Knight´s Cross 1st grade
· Kingdom of Württemberg, Friedrich-Order, Knight´s Cross 1st grade
· Grand Duchy of Baden, Order of the Zähringen Lion, Knight´s Cross 2nd grade with oakleaves
· Free City of Hamburg, Hanseatic Cross
· Austrian Empire and Kingdom of Hungary, Military-Merit Cross, 2nd Class with war decoration
· Ottoman Empire, Imtiaz-Medal, gold with swords
· Ottoman Empire, Osmanie-Order, 2nd class with swords
· Ottoman Empire, Medschidie-Order, 2nd class with swords
· Ottoman Empire, Liakat-Medal, gold with swords
· Ottoman Empire, Iron Crescent

Regards,
Stauffenberg II

Kaan Caglar
Member


Joined: 11 Jul 2003
Location: Izmir,Turkey
Thu Mar 04, 2004 2:59 pm
Post subject:
Ow some minor data? Awesome as always Stauffenberg II..
Thank you
Kaan



Stauffenberg II
Member


Joined: 03 Jan 2003
Location: Austria
Thu Mar 04, 2004 3:22 pm
Post subject:
A little bit off topic ... but for those interested in the Middle East War ... a must see is the last info provided by Glenn2438 & Jörg at:

http://www.austro-hungarian-army.co.uk/ottoman.htm

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:03

VJK
Member


Joined: 07 Apr 2002
Location: Riga, Latvia
Sun Mar 07, 2004 5:34 pm
Post subject:
Hi!

One more little snippet of information: in 1921 Kreß von Kressenstein was Chef des Wehramtes.

Here's another pic of him.

Regards,

VJK

Image

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:04

Glenn2438
Forum Staff

Joined: 17 Mar 2002
Location: Germany
Sun Mar 07, 2004 5:54 pm
Post subject: Kress
Kreß was promoted to General der Artillerie on the 1st of January 1928 and retired on the 30th of November 1929 with permission to wear the uniform of Artillery Regiment 7. It is strange that he was not further listed in the published Ranglisten!

Regards
Glenn


JohnW
Member


Joined: 14 Apr 2002
Location: California
Mon Mar 08, 2004 7:18 am
Post subject: Kress von Kressenstein
All,

Thanks to all for the information. Very impressive.

John

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:05

Tosun Saral
Member


Joined: 02 Nov 2005
Location: Ankara/Turkey
Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:35 pm
Post subject:
Kress with Col. Gott and pet dog at Palastina front

Image

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:07

Bill Woerlee
Member


Joined: 06 Dec 2006
Location: Canberra
Sun Oct 28, 2007 8:46 am
Post subject:
Mates

To present this further information about Kress, I ask the indulgence of the moderators to allow me to introduce material that is not within the parameters of this particular forum but certainly tells of the later history of Kress.

Here is another little known fact about Kress - if he had ordered his men to have been a little bit more robust in their shooting, he could have saved the world the misery of World War 2. It is Kress' moderation that enabled Adolf Hitler to gain near martyr status after the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923.

Curse the man for his alleged bleeding heart. Nothing like a massacre in time to save nine. Here is an article from the Times of 8 March 1924 at p. 9:

Image


The situation in Bavaria was bad and going to worse. Here is a description of the crisis and the role played by Kress in the whole affair. This following article explains why Kress was placed in the position of suppressing the Bierhalle Putsche.

Again, this article is from the Times, this time 22 October 1923, p. 12:

Image

Under Hitler, Kress became the overall commander of the cavalry units prior to him retiring.

All up, quite a remarkable fellow and obviously well thought of throughout the German Army.

Cheers

Bill

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:09

Kress von Kressenstein.Photo supplied by JPK

Image

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:19

Another Turkish connection with the Beerhall Putsch

Otto von Lossow

As a Colonel in 1912 was one of only two German officers to command Ottoman troops in the Balkan Wars.

Image

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:19

Bill

Any views on Kress' memoirs..are they worthwhile buying?

Peter

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 11:29

Kress in the Caucasus 1918:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_Caucasus_Expedition


http://home.comcast.net/~jcviser/index. ... /kress.htm

Kress von Kressenstein remained in command of Eighth Army's coastal defenses until being transferred to the Caucasus in May 1918. While there, he led the German-Turkish column occupying Tbilisi and took part in defending Abkhazia from an invasion by the Red Army.



German and Turkish troops clash,1918:

viewtopic.php?t=116782

User avatar
Bill Woerlee
Member
Posts: 487
Joined: 06 Dec 2006 04:52
Location: Canberra

Post by Bill Woerlee » 28 Oct 2007 13:44

Peter

G'day mate

Thanks for all of that.

Just to give you a bit of a review of the book - I have copied this from my comments on the Australian Light Horse Forum:

Mit den Tèurken zum Suezkanal by Friedrich Freiherr Kress von Kressenstein

It is not a very insightful book although it makes some very interesting observations at different points. The theme of the book is: "Why I stuffed up the Third Battle of Gaza". It is his riposte to the criticism of his leadership by Lt Col Hussein Husni Amir in his book "Yilderim". This was a spat between two commanders in an effort to lay blame.

Kress' commentary on the 1915 Canal Raid gives an excellent insiders view to this abortive struggle while his 1916 Canal Raid was more of a resignation to undertake a stupid task that he didn't believe in because he was ordered to do so. The objective of the 1916 raid was to place guns within shelling range of the canal which made Romani an important point. The raid at Jifjafa destroyed the other arm of the attack.

One aspect that makes for interesting reading is his commentary relating to the loss of Magdhaba. This was unexpected and it left the whole left flank of the Turkish line exposed and ready for rolling up. Much to Kress' amazement, Chauvel and the British generals were satisfied with a local strategic victory rather than a long reaching tactical victory. You can read parts of Kress' thoughts on the thread of Magdhaba where Steve and I discussed the likelihood that Kress was correct.

http://www.lighthorse.org.au/forum/topi ... hichpage=3

Kress' commentary on Gaza 3 is less than candid. He does not want to acknowledge his role in the Turkish defeat and goes a long way to drop the proverbial bucket on poor Turkish leadership.

Bearing that in mind, the only reason for purchasing such a book is sentimentality and the occasional rare gem.

If you are interested, I can put some of it on this site. Here is the Table of Contents so pick out the area you want to see and I will try to accommodate your request.

Image

The typeset font is German Gothic so I hope that you are fine with it. When I learned German at school, the texts we had were only in German Gothic so reading it was a doddle. You shouldn't have too many worries. Anyway, let me know the sections you would like and we will take it from there.

Cheers

Bill


Let

User avatar
Peter H
Member
Posts: 28628
Joined: 30 Dec 2002 13:18
Location: Australia

Post by Peter H » 28 Oct 2007 14:01

Thanks Bill

I'll get back to you on that.

Peter

User avatar
Bill Woerlee
Member
Posts: 487
Joined: 06 Dec 2006 04:52
Location: Canberra

Post by Bill Woerlee » 28 Oct 2007 14:09

Mates

Talking about covering one's rear, I found another article in the Times which, with the indulgence of the moderators, deals with Kress and the Armenian question. I have no intention of discussing the Armenian Massacre but wish to focus solely upon role Kress played.

This article seems to infer that the German Foreign Ministry put Dr Johannes Lepsius, erstwhile head of the German Orient Mission, in charge of a project to sift through all German communications relating to the Armenian situation and let the chips lay as they fall. In other words, this appears to be the German government bearing its soul to reveal its complicity in the round-up and deportation of Armenians.

Here is the article from the Times, 27 August 1919, p. 9:

Image

As with all things, this story doesn't reveal as much as it conceals.

It appears to be a genuine attempt to bare everything. The reality is that this whole document produced by Lepsius is a sham. The author of the work was in an overtly self imposed exile in Holland while covertly operating as a German secret agent. He had full and free access to copies and transcripts of documents but at no stage did he compare his copies to the originals.

So in reality, we are no wiser in knowing what Kress actually said in his memo quoted at the head of this article.

What is interesting is the situation he found himself in when he was in Georgia after the peace treaty with Russia. The last story in the article has a good ring of authenticity about it and there is no doubt that the informant was Colonel Paraquin himself.

Cheers

Bill

Return to “The end of the Ottoman Empire 1908-1923”