Dietrich von Choltitz
From Choltitz served in the First World War at the west front, last as a second lieutenant. It remained in the Weimar Republic in the realm resistance, where it starting from 1929 ride masters and boss of a Kavallerie - Eskadron was. It became later first than major, then 1938 than lieutenant colonel Kommandeur of the 3. Battalion air landing infantry of the regiment 16.
After beginning of the Second World War battalion was mainly 1940 in the occupation of the bridges of Rotterdam involved by air landing troops of Choltitz'. For this it received to 18. May 1940 the knight cross. In September 1940 commander of the entire regiment became, starting from 1941 as a Colonel from Choltitz. In the war against the Soviet Union unit was considerably involved in conquest Sewastopols in June 1942 of Choltitz'. 1942 it was promoted to major general , 1943 to the lieutenant general. It e.g. kommandierte. the 260. Infantry division, was deputy commander and late commander of different army corps and tank corps; by March 1944 on in Italy and starting from June 1944 at the west front.
At the 1. August 1944 was carried from Choltitz to the general of the infantry and to 7. August appointed the armed forces commander of Paris. General Dietrich von Choltitz met to 9. August 1944 in Paris. In the following 16 days to defend Paris up to the last man and/or from Choltitz Adolf Hitler opposed several instructions. to leave as destroyed city. The leader instruction of 23. August read: “Paris may not fall or only as rubble field into the hand of the enemy.” Most well-known quotation from a telephone call of Hitler also of Choltitz is Hitler's question “burns Paris? ”
Could by a mixture from active establishment of contact with the enemy, intensive negotiations with the Résistance, demonstration of strength (military parades) and threats from Choltitz the riot and rebellion of the population thus fights and destruction in the world metropolis, serious of Paris and, prevent. Dietrich von Choltitz handed over the city after delaying resistance in some suburbs of Paris almost intact to 25. August 1944 against 14.45 o'clock at general Leclerc of the French army and the communist Henri Rol Tanguy, the leader that Paris Resistance/FFI. It prevented thereby a second Stalingrad and of many sides very much “public-effectively” than “rescuers of Paris” was later regarded.
It was brought to park into the English prisoner-of-war camp Trent. There the discussions of the caught officers were secretly heard. On the one hand therein closer connections from Choltitz' to the resistance become clearly, than so far admits. On the other hand he accuses himself also 1941/42 of the participation in war crimes in Russia, probably on the Krim. “The heaviest order, which I accomplished,… if the liquidation of the Jews is ", park, “I confessed this order however also up to the last consequence accomplished from Choltitz opposite its comrades in Trent. ”
1947 became a general from allies war shank to dismiss. Dietrich von Choltitz died to 5. November 1966 at a war suffering of many years (Lungenemphysem) in the city hospital in Baden-Baden. He was buried at the city cemetery of Baden-Baden in presence of also high French officers.
medals and honors
- iron cross I. and II. Class 1914
- Kgl. sächs. Military sp. - Heinrichs medal 1917
- knight cross 18.05.1940
- German cross in gold 08.02.1942
- Krimschild July 1942
Choltitz, Dietrich of: “… Paris burns?” Adolf Hitler… Factual report of the last German commander in Paris; Mannheim: Una Weltbücherei 1950.
Choltitz, Dietrich of: Soldier among soldiers; Konstanz: European publishing house 1951.
Neitzel, Sönke: Heard. German generals in British war shank 1942-1945; Berlin: Propyläen 2005. ISBN 3-54907261-9 (edition of heard discussions in the prisoner-of-war camp [selection])
Web on the left of
| | * Literature of and over Dietrich von Choltitz in the catalog of the DDB
- a Website with many photos and documents; provided of Choltitz' son
- the posthume confession of the Nazi generals - mirror articles of 02. January 2006
|NAME||Choltitz, Dietrich of|
|SHORT DESCRIPTION||German general and 1944 commander of city of of Paris|
|DATE OF BIRTH||9. November 1894|
|PLACE OF BIRTH|
|DYING DATE||5. November 1966|