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Encyclopedia > Karl Dönitz
Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz.
Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz.

Karl Dönitz (pronounced [ˈdøːnɪts]) (September 16, 1891December 24, 1980) was a naval leader in Germany during World War II. Despite never joining the Nazi Party, Dönitz attained the high rank of Grand Admiral (Großadmiral) and served as Commander in Chief of Submarines (Oberbefehlshaber der Unterseeboote), and later Commander in Chief of the German War Navy (Oberbefehlshaber der Kriegsmarine). Under his command, the U-boat fleet fought the famous Battle of the Atlantic. He also served as President of Germany for twenty days following Adolf Hitler's suicide. Controversially, he was charged and convicted of war crimes and served a sentence of ten years for his part in the unrestricted submarine warfare conducted by Germany in the North Atlantic. Portrait of Karl Dönitz, taken from [1]. This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... The International Phonetic Alphabet is a phonetic alphabet used by linguists to accurately and uniquely represent each of the wide variety of sounds (phones or phonemes) the human vocal apparatus can produce. ... September 16 is the 259th day of the year (260th in leap years). ... 1891 was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... December 24 is the 358th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (359th in leap years). ... 1980 is a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... U.S. Navy supercarrier USS Nimitz on November 3, 2003. ... Mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 18 km (over 11 miles) into the air. ... The Nazi swastika symbol The National Socialist German Workers Party (German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei), better known as the NSDAP or the Nazi Party was a political party that was led to power in Germany by Adolf Hitler in 1933. ... Alternate meaning: Grand Admiral (Star Wars). ... The Kriegsmarine (or War Navy) was the name of the German Navy between 1935 and 1945, during the Nazi regime, superseding the Reichsmarine. ... U-boat is also a nickname for some diesel locomotives built by GE; see List of GE locomotives October 1939. ... The Second Battle of the Atlantic was the longest continuous military campaign of World War II, running from 1939 right through to the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, and was at its height from mid-1940 through to about the end of 1943. ... The Federal President (German: Bundespräsident, formerly Reichspräsident) is Germanys head of state. ... Adolf Hitler (April 20, 1889–April 30, 1945) was the Führer und Reichskanzler (Leader and Imperial chancellor) of Germany from 1933 to his death. ... Suicide (from Latin sui caedere, to kill oneself) is the act of intentionally ending ones own life; it is sometimes a noun for one who has committed, or attempted the act. ... A war crime is a punishable offense, under international law, for violations of the law of war by any person or persons, military or civilian. ...

Contents

Early life and career

Dönitz was born in Grünau near Berlin to Emil Dönitz and Anna Beyer (d. March 6, 1895). His father was an engineer. Karl had an older brother named Friedrich Dönitz. In 1910, Dönitz enlisted in the German Imperial Navy (Kaiserliche Marine), becoming a sea-cadet (Seekadett) on April 4. On April 15, 1911, he became a midshipman (Fähnrich zur See), the rank given to those who had served for one year as officer's apprentice. Berlin (pronounced: , German ) is the capital of Germany and its largest city, with 3,426,000 inhabitants (as of January 2005); down from 4. ... March 6 is the 65th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (66th in Leap years). ... 1895 was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... An engineer may be someone who practices the engineering profession, or the driver of a rail locomotive. ... 1910 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... The Kaiserliche Marine or Imperial Navy was the German Navy created by Kaiser Wilhelm II between 1871 and 1919; it grew out of the Prussian Navy. ... This article refers to the general definition of cadet. ... April 4 is the 94th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (95th in leap years). ... April 15 is the 105th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (106th in leap years). ... 1911 is a common year starting on Sunday (click on link for calendar). ... For the fishes called midshipman, see Midshipman fish In the navies of English-speaking countries, a midshipman is a low-ranking commissioned officer, usually the lowest rank. ...

Enlarge
Karl Dönitz as an Oberleutnant aboard U-39 in World War I

On September 27, 1913, Dönitz was commissioned as an ensign (Leutnant zur See). When World War I began, he served on the light cruiser SMS Breslau in the Mediterranean Sea. In August 1914, Breslau began operating out of Constantinople (Istanbul) (part of the Ottoman Empire), engaging Russian forces in the Black Sea. On March 22, 1916, Dönitz was promoted to second lieutenant (Oberleutnant zur See); in October of that year he was transferred to the small submarine UC 68. Download high resolution version (500x636, 93 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (500x636, 93 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... September 27 is the 270th day of the year (271st in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 95 days remaining. ... 1913 is a common year starting on Wednesday. ... In military organizations, a commissioned officer is a member of the service who derives authority directly from a sovereign power, and as such holds a commission from that power. ... An ensign is a distinguishing token, emblem, badge, or flag such as a symbol of office. ... Ypres, 1917, in the vicinity of the Battle of Passchendaele. ... A light cruiser is a warship that is not so large and powerful as a regular (or heavy) cruiser, but still larger than ships like destroyers. ... The SMS Breslau was a Magdeburg-class light cruiser of the German Kaiserliche Marine, commissioned in 1912. ... The Mediterranean Sea is a part of the Atlantic Ocean almost completely enclosed by land, on the north by Europe, on the south by Africa, and on the east by Asia. ... Note: as an adjective (stressed on the second syllable instead of the first), august means honorable. ... 1914 is a common year starting on Thursday. ... This article is about the city. ... The Ottoman Empire at the height of its power Imperial motto El Muzaffer Daima The Ever Victorious (as written in tugra) Official language Ottoman Turkish Capital İstanbul (Constantinople/Asitane/Konstantiniyye ) Sovereigns Sultans of the Osmanli Dynasty Population ca 40 million Area 6. ... Satellite view of the Black Sea, taken by NASA MODIS Cities of the Black Sea The Black Sea (known as the Euxine Sea in antiquity) is an inland sea between southeastern Europe and Asia Minor. ... March 22 is the 81st day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (82nd in Leap years). ... 1916 is a leap year starting on Saturday (link will take you to calendar) Events January-February January 1 -The first successful blood transfusion using blood that had been stored and cooled. ... USS Los Angeles A submarine is a specialized watercraft that can operate underwater. ...


On 4 October 1918, Dönitz was captured by the British; he remained a prisoner of war in a British prison camp until his release in July 1919, and returned to Germany in 1920. While back in Germany, Dönitz continued his naval career, and became a first lieutenant (Kapitänleutnant) on January 10, 1921. He commanded torpedo boats by 1928, becoming a lieutenant commander (Korvettenkapitän) on November 1 of that year. October 4 is the 277th day of the year (278th in Leap years). ... 1918 was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ... Geneva Convention definition A prisoner of war (POW) is a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine who is imprisoned by an enemy power during or immediately after an armed conflict. ... 1919 was a common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar). ... 1920 is a leap year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar) Events January January 7 - Forces of Russian White admiral Kolchak surrender in Krasnoyarsk. ... January 10 is the 10th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1921 was a common year starting on Saturday (see link for calendar). ... A modern torpedo, historically called a self propelled torpedo, is a self-propelled guided projectile that (after being launched above or below the water surface) operates underwater and is designed to detonate on contact or in proximity to a target. ... 1928 was a leap year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... In the Royal Navy, United States Navy and United States Coast Guard, a lieutenant commander (lieutenant-commander or Lt Cdr in the RN) is a commissioned officer superior to a lieutenant and inferior to a commander. ... November 1 is the 305th day of the year (306th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 60 days remaining. ...


On 1 September 1933, Dönitz became a full commander (Fregattenkapitän), and in 1934 was put in command of the cruiser Emden, the ship on which cadets and midshipmen took a year-long world cruise in preparation for a future officer's commission. The ship returned to Germany at Wilhelmshaven in July 1935, and on 1 September Dönitz was promoted to captain (Kapitän zur See). Dönitz was placed in command of the 1st U-boat flotilla, Wediggen, which comprised three U-boats: U 7, U 8, and U 9. September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1933 was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... Commander is a military rank used in many navies but not generally in armies or air forces. ... 1934 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Wilhelmshaven is a town in Lower Saxony, Germany. ... 1935 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will take you to calendar). ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... Captain is both a nautical term and a military rank. ... The U-9 was a Type II U-boat. ...


Before World War II

Prior to the war, Dönitz had pressed for the conversion of the German fleet to one that would be made up almost entirely of U-boats. He advocated a strategy of attack only against merchant shipping, targets that were relatively safe to attack. He pointed out that destroying Britain's fleet of oil tankers would starve the Royal Navy of supplies needed to run their ships, which would be just as effective as sinking them. He claimed that with a fleet of 300 of the newer Type VII U-boats, Germany would knock Britain out of the war. In order to deal with the ever-present escort ships, he proposed grouping several subs together into a "wolf pack," overwhelming the defense. A tanker is usually a vehicle carrying large amounts of liquid fuel. ... The Royal Navy of the United Kingdom is the senior service of the armed services, being the oldest of its three branches. ... Type VII U-boats were the workhorses of the German World War II U-boot-waffe, and appeared in several sub-types. ... This article describes the system of submarine warfare. ...


At the time many felt that such talk marked a weakling, and this was true of Dönitz's commander, Grand Admiral Erich Raeder. The two constantly fought for funding priorities within the Navy, while at the same time fighting with Hitler's friends such as Hermann Göring in the Luftwaffe, who received much attention. Raeder had a somewhat confusing attitude; notably he apparently did not believe the German fleet of capital ships was of much use, commenting at one time that all they could hope to do was to die valiantly. Dönitz had no such fatalism. Erich Raeder. ... Hermann Göring Hermann Wilhelm Göring (also Goering or Goring in English) (January 12, 1893 – October 15, 1946) was an early member of the Nazi party, founder of the Gestapo, and one of the main perpetrators of Nazi Germany. ... The Luftwaffe (literally, air weapon, pronounced looft-vaaf-feh) is the air force of Germany. ... Fatalism is, roughly, the view that the future is already set and therefore, that human deliberation and actions are pointless because things have to be the way they have to be. ...


Role in World War II

When the war started in 1939, Dönitz had recently been appointed commodore (Kommodore) on January 28 and commander of submarines. The German Navy was unprepared for war, having anticipated the war to begin in 1942, as decided in previous war plans. At the time, Dönitz's U-boat force included only 50 boats, many of them short-range. He made do with what he had, while being harassed by Raeder and Hitler calling on him to dedicate boats to military actions operating against the British fleet directly. These operations were generally unsuccessful, while the other boats continued to do well against Dönitz's primary targets of merchant shipping. 1939 was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... January 28 is the 28th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1942 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ...


On September 1, 1939, Dönitz became a Rear Admiral (Konteradmiral); on September 1 the following year, he was made a Vice Admiral (Vizeadmiral). September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... 1939 was a common year starting on Sunday (link will take you to calendar). ... The term Rear Admiral originated from the days of Naval Sailing Squadrons, and can trace its origins to the British Royal Navy. ... September 1 is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years). ... Vice Admiral is a naval rank of three star level, equivalent to Lieutenant General in seniority. ...


By 1941 the delivery of new Type VII U-boats had improved to the point where operations were having a real effect on the British wartime economy. Although production of merchant ships shot up in response, improved torpedoes, better boats, and much better operational planning led to increasing numbers of "kills." On December 11, following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States (on whom Hitler had declared war) joined the war. Dönitz immediately planned for Operation Drumbeat against the eastern coast shipping, which was carried out the next month with dramatic results. 1941 was a common year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ... December 11 is the 345th day (346th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... The Imperial Japanese Navy made its attack on Pearl Harbor on the morning of December 7, 1941. ... The second happy time was a phase in the Second Battle of the Atlantic during which Axis submarines attacked merchant shipping to the east and south-east of the United States. ...


On at least two occasions, Allied success against U-boat operations led Dönitz to investigate possible reasons. Among those considered were espionage and Allied interception and decoding of German Navy communications (the Naval version of Enigma, etc.). Both investigations into communications security came to the conclusion that espionage was more likely, if Allied success had not been accidental. Nevertheless, Dönitz ordered his U-boat fleet to use an improved version of the Enigma machine (intended to be even more secure) — the M4 — for communications within the Fleet, on February 1, 1942. The Navy was the only branch to use the improved version; the rest of the German military continued to use their then current versions of Enigma. The new network was termed Triton (Shark to the Allies). For a time, this change in encryption between submarines caused considerable difficulty for Allied codebreakers; it took ten months before Shark traffic could again be read (see also Ultra and Cryptanalysis of the Enigma). Spy and secret agent redirect here; for alternate use, see Spy (disambiguation) and Secret agent (disambiguation). ... For other senses of the word code, see code (disambiguation). ... In the history of cryptography, the Enigma was a portable cipher machine used to encrypt and decrypt secret messages. ... February 1 is the 32nd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ... 1942 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... Cryptanalysis (from the Greek kryptós, hidden, and analýein, to loosen or to untie) is the study of methods for obtaining the meaning of encrypted information without access to the secret information which is normally required to do so. ... Ultra (sometimes capitalised ULTRA) was the name used by the British for intelligence resulting from decryption of German communications in World War II. The term eventually became the standard designation in both Britain and the United States for all intelligence from high-level cryptanalytic sources. ... Enigma is the name of a family of ciphering machines made famous by their use in World War II and the successful analysis of the cipher by Allied codebreakers. ...


By the end of 1942, the production of Type VII boats had increased to the point where Dönitz was finally able to conduct mass attacks by packs of submarines, which became known as "Rudel" ("pack"). Allied shipping losses shot up tremendously, and there was serious concern for a while about the state of British fuel supplies. In 1943, Dönitz replaced Erich Raeder as the Commander in Chief of the German War Navy (Oberbefehlshaber der Kriegsmarine). 1942 was a common year starting on Thursday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1943 is a common year starting on Friday. ...


During 1943, the war in the Atlantic turned against the Germans, but Dönitz continued to push for more U-boat construction and technological development. At the end of the war the Nazi submarine fleet was by far the most advanced in the world, and late war examples such as the Type XXI U-boat served as models for Soviet and American construction after the war. 1943 is a common year starting on Friday. ... The Atlantic Ocean is Earths second-largest ocean, covering approximately one-fifth of its surface. ... Type XXI U-boat U 3008, postwar photo Type XXI U-boats, also known as the Elektroboots, were the first submarines designed to operate entirely submerged, rather than as surface ships that could submerge as a temporary, awkward mode of operation. ... Soviet redirects here. ...


In a way, Dönitz helped bring about the loss of his U-boats. He was a very involved man, often contacting U-Boats up to seventy times a day with questions such as their position, fuel supply, etc. Eventually, the Allies were able to develop technology which allowed them to use triangulation to lock on to an U-Boat while using its radio, forcing them to submerge and then depth charge them. The ship wants to know the distance d to the shore. ... Depth Charge used by U.S. Navy later in World War II The depth charge is the oldest anti-submarine weapon. ...


Both of Dönitz's sons died during World War II. His younger son, Peter, was a watch officer on U-954 and was killed on May 19, 1943, when his boat was sunk in the North Atlantic with the loss of its entire crew. After this loss, Peter's older brother, Klaus, was allowed to leave combat duty and began studying to be a naval doctor. Dönitz lost Klaus almost a year after Peter died, on May 13, 1944. Klaus convinced his friends to let him go on the fast torpedo attack boat S 141 for a raid on the Selsey off the coast of England on his 24th birthday. The boat was destroyed and Klaus died, even though six others were rescued. May 19 is the 139th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (140th in leap years). ... 1943 is a common year starting on Friday. ... May 13 is the 133rd day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (134th in leap years). ... 1944 was a leap year starting on Saturday (link will take you to calendar). ... Royal motto: Dieu et mon droit (French: God and my right) Englands location within the UK Official language English de facto Capital London de facto Largest city London Area  - Total Ranked 1st UK 130,395 km² Population  - Total (2001)  - Density Ranked 1st UK 49,138,831 377/km² Religion...


In his last testament, Adolf Hitler surprisingly designated Dönitz as his successor as Head of State (Staatsoberhaupt), a choice that shows how distrustful Hitler had become of Hermann Göring and Heinrich Himmler in the final days of the war in Europe. Significantly, Dönitz was not to become Führer, but rather President (Reichspräsident), a post Hitler had abolished years prior. Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels was to become Head of Government and Chancellor of Germany (Reichskanzler). Hitler committed suicide on April 30, 1945 and Goebbels followed suit a day later. The last will and testament of Adolf Hitler were dictated by Hitler to his secretary in his Berlin Führerbunker on April 29, 1945 the day he and Eva Braun married. ... Though a term originally coined for Republican presidents, a head of state or chief of state is now universally known as the chief public representative of a nation-state, federation or commonwealth, whose role generally includes personifying the continuity and legitimacy of the state and exercising the political powers, functions... Hermann Göring Hermann Wilhelm Göring (also Goering or Goring in English) (January 12, 1893 – October 15, 1946) was an early member of the Nazi party, founder of the Gestapo, and one of the main perpetrators of Nazi Germany. ... Heinrich Himmler Heinrich Himmler (October 7, 1900 – May 23, 1945) was the commander of the German Schutzstaffel and one of the most powerful men in Nazi Germany. ... World map showing location of Europe A satellite composite image of Europe Europe is geologically and geographically a peninsula, forming the westernmost part of Eurasia. ... Führer (often written Fuehrer or Fuhrer in English when umlauts are not used) is a proper noun meaning leader or guide in the German language. ... Dr. Paul Joseph Goebbels (October 29, 1897 – May 1, 1945) was Adolf Hitlers Propaganda Minister (see Propagandaministerium) in Nazi Germany. ... The head of government is the leader of the government or cabinet. ... The head of government in Germany has traditionally been called Kanzler (Chancellor). ... Suicide (from Latin sui caedere, to kill oneself) is the act of intentionally ending ones own life; it is sometimes a noun for one who has committed, or attempted the act. ... April 30 is the 120th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (121st in leap years), with 245 days remaining, as the last day in April. ... 1945 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Dönitz became the sole representative of the crumbling Reich. On May 7, 1945, he authorized the Chief-of-Staff of the German Armed Forces, Colonel-General Alfred Jodl, to sign the unconditional surrender documents for all German forces to the Allies. The surrender documents included the phrase "All forces under German control to cease active operations at 2301 hours Central European Time on 8 May 1945." The next day, shortly before midnight, Jodl repeated the signing in Berlin at Zhukov's headquarters, and at the time specified the end of World War II in Europe occurred. May 7 is the 127th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (128th in leap years). ... 1945 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Colonel-General Alfred Jodl Alfred Jodl (May 10, 1890 - October 16, 1946) was a Wehrmacht officer. ... Central European Time (CET) is one of the names of UTC+1 time zone, 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time. ... May 8 is the 128th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (129th in leap years). ... 1945 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgi Zhukov Georgy Konstantinovich Zhukov (Russian: Гео́ргий Константи́нович Жу́ков) (December 1, 1896 - June 18, 1974), Soviet military commander and politician, considered by many as one of the most successful field commanders of World War II. Prewar career Born into a peasant family in Strelkovka, Kaluga... This article chronicles the end of the European Theatre of World War II. On April 25, 1945 United States and Soviet troops linked-up, cutting Germany in two. ...


Dönitz appointed Ludwig von Krosigk as Imperial Chancellor (Reichskanzler) and they attempted to form a government. Dönitz devoted most of his efforts to trying to ensure that German troops surrendered to the British or Americans and not the Soviets, fearing vengeful Soviet reprisals. However, his government was not recognized by the Allied powers and was dissolved when its members were captured and arrested by British forces on May 23, 1945, at Flensburg. Count Johann Ludwig (Lutz) Schwerin von Krosigk, EK, (August 22, 1887–March 4, 1977) was a German politician. ... The head of government in Germany has traditionally been called Kanzler (Chancellor). ... The British Army is the land armed forces branch of the British military. ... May 23 is the 143rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (144th in leap years). ... 1945 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... Statistics State: Schleswig-Holstein District: Independent city Area: 56. ...


Trial and later years

Dönitz's memoirs, entitled Ten Years and Twenty Days, were published in 1958.

Following the war, Dönitz went on trial as a war criminal in the Nuremberg Trials. Unlike many of the other defendants, he was not charged with crimes against humanity, although in his speeches he used thanked Hitler for showing the "danger of poison of Jewry". However, he was charged with "Conspiracy to wage aggressive war" (count one), "Planning, initiating and waging wars of aggression" (count two), and "crimes against the laws of war" (count three). Specifically, he faced charges of waging unrestricted submarine warfare and of issuing an order after the Laconia incident not to rescue survivors from ships attacked by submarine. This image is a book cover. ... This image is a book cover. ... 1958 was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... A war crime is a punishable offense, under international law, for violations of the law of war by any person or persons, military or civilian. ... The Nuremberg Trials is the general name for two sets of trials of Nazis involved in World War II and the Holocaust. ... This article is in need of attention. ... A war crime is a punishable offense, under international law, for violations of the law of war by any person or persons, military or civilian. ... The Laconia incident was an event in World War II that profoundly affected the operations of the German U-boat fleet and caused the conviction, four years later, of Admiral Karl Dönitz of war crimes. ...


As one of the witnesses in his own defense, Dönitz produced an affidavit from American Admiral Chester Nimitz who testified that the United States had used unrestricted warfare as a tactic in the Pacific and that American submarines did not rescue survivors in situations where their own safety was in question. Despite this, the tribunal found Dönitz guilty of charges two and three, for which he was sentenced to 11 and a half years. He served ten years in Spandau Prison, West Berlin. An affidavit is a formal sworn statement of fact, written down, signed, and witnessed (as to the veracity of the signature) by a taker of oaths, such as a notary public. ... Chester Nimitz Chester William Nimitz (February 24, 1885 – February 20, 1966) was the Commander in Chief of Pacific Forces for the United States and Allied forces during World War II. He was the nations leading authority on submarines, as well as Chief of the Navy Bureau of Navigation in... The Pacific Ocean (from the Latin name Mare Pacificum, peaceful sea, bestowed upon it by the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan) is the worlds largest body of water. ... Spandau Prison was a purpose-built prison situated in the borough of Spandau in western Berlin, constructed in 1876. ... Boroughs of West Berlin West Berlin was the name given to the western part of Berlin between 1949 and 1990. ...


Of all the defendants at Nuremberg, the verdict against Dönitz was probably the most controversial; Dönitz always maintained that he did nothing that his Allied counterparts did not. Testifying to the controversial nature of the decision, numerous Allied officers sent letters to Dönitz expressing their dismay over the verdict of his trial.It should be noted however that he was very supportive of Hitler.


Dönitz was released on October 1, 1956, and he retired to the small village of Aumühle in Schleswig-Holstein, near Hamburg. There he worked on two books. His memoirs, Zehn Jahre, Zwanzig Tage ("Ten Years and Twenty Days"), appeared in Germany in 1958 and became available in an English translation the following year. This book recounted Dönitz's experiences as U-boat commander (ten years) and President of Germany (20 days); hence the title. Dönitz's second book, Mein wechselvolles Leben ("My Ever-Changing Life") is less known, perhaps because it deals with the events of his life before 1934. This book was first published in 1968, and a new edition was released in 1998 with the revised title Mein soldatisches Leben ("My Soldier's Life"). Most editions today combine both Mein wechselvolles Leben and Mein soldatisches Leben into a single book. October 1 is the 274th day of the year (275th in Leap years). ... 1956 was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... This article concerns itself with the municipality Aumühle in the German Bundesland Schleswig-Holstein. ... Schleswig-Holstein is the northernmost of the 16 Bundesländer in Germany. ... Position of Hamburg in Germany Hamburgs central broadway Jungfernstieg at the Alster lake, between 1900 and 1914 This article is about the city in Germany. ... 1958 was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... 1934 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... 1968 was a leap year starting on Monday (the link is to a full 1968 calendar). ... 1998 is a common year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year of the Ocean. ...


Late in his life, Dönitz's reputation was falsy rehabilitated to a large extent and his support for Hitler's policy and antisemitism forgotten. He made every attempt to answer correspondence and autograph postcards for others. After Dönitz died on 24 December 1980 in Aumühle, many former servicemen and foreign naval officers came to pay their respects at his funeral on January 6. December 24 is the 358th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (359th in leap years). ... 1980 is a leap year starting on Tuesday. ... January 6 is the 6th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar. ...


Quotes

  • What would have become of our country today if the Fuehrer had not united us under National Socialism. Split by parties, beset with the spreading poison of Jewry and vulnerable to it, because we lacked the defence of our present uncompromising ideology, we would long since have succumbed under the burden of this war, and delivered ourselves up to the enemy who would have mercilessly destroyed us.

Heroes' Day, the 12th of March, 1944

  • I was of the opinion that the endurance, the power to endure of the people, could be better preserved if there were no Jewish elements in the nation.

Nuremberg Trial

  • In a prison camp of the auxiliary cruiser Cormorau in Australia, a warrant officer, acting as camp senior officer, had all Communists, who made themselves noticeable among the inmates of the camps, systematically done away with in such a way that the guards did not notice. This petty officer is sure of my full recognition for his decision and its execution, and, after his return, I shall do everything I can to promote him, as he has shown he is fitted to be a leader.

Statements at Nuremburg Trial (http://www.nizkor.org/hweb/imt/tgmwc/tgmwc-22/tgmwc-22-216-04.shtml)


References

Sources

  • Dönitz, Karl. Memoirs: Ten Years and Twenty Days. Da Capo Press, USA, 1997. ISBN 0306807645. (First English translation, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1959).
  • Guðmundur Helgason. "Befehlshaber der Unterseeboote (BdU) Karl Dönitz. (http://uboat.net/men/doenitz.htm)" at Uboat.net.

Background information

  • Cremer, Peter. U-Boat Commander: A Periscope View of the Battle of the Atlantic. 1984. ISBN 0870219693.
  • Davidson, Eugene. The Trial of the Germans: Account of the Twenty-two Defendants Before the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. 1997. ISBN 0826211399.
  • Hadley, Michael L. U-Boats Against Canada: German Submarines in Canadian Waters. McGill-Queen's University Press: 1985. ISBN 0773508015.
  • Macintyre, Donald. U-boat Killer. 1999. ISBN 0304352357.
  • Werner, Herbert A. Iron Coffins: A U-boat Commander's War, 1939–45. 1999. ISBN 0304353302.
  • Prien, Gunther. Fortunes of War: U-boat Commander. 2000. ISBN 0752420259.
Preceded by:
Adolf Hitler
(Führer and Reich Chancellor of Germany)
President of Germany
1945
Allied military occupation 1945-1949
Divided into East and West in 1949
Succeeded by:
West Germany: Theodor Heuss
East Germany: Johannes Dieckmann


Adolf Hitler (April 20, 1889–April 30, 1945) was the Führer und Reichskanzler (Leader and Imperial chancellor) of Germany from 1933 to his death. ... A number of presidential offices have existed in Germany since the abolition of the imperial monarchy in 1918. ... 1945 was a common year starting on Monday (link will take you to calendar). ... East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic (GDR), German Deutsche Demokratische Republik (DDR), was a Communist state that existed from 1949 to 1990 in the former Soviet occupation zone of Germany. ... West Germany was the informal but almost universally used name for the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 until 1990, during which years the Federal Republic did not yet include East Germany. ... Theodor Heuss (January 31, 1884 - December 12, 1963) was a German politician and first Federal President of West Germany. ... East Germany, officially the German Democratic Republic (GDR), German Deutsche Demokratische Republik (DDR), was a Communist state that existed from 1949 to 1990 in the former Soviet occupation zone of Germany. ... Johannes Dieckmann (1893 - 1969) held the office of State President of East Germany on an acting basis in 1949 and again in 1960. ...

 
German Field Marshals (Generalfeldmarschall) of World War II

Werner von Blomberg | Hermann Göring | Walther von Brauchitsch | Albert Kesselring | Wilhelm Keitel | Günther von Kluge | Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb | Fedor von Bock | Wilhelm List | Erwin von Witzleben | Walther von Reichenau | Erhard Milch | Hugo Sperrle | Gerd von Rundstedt | Erwin Rommel | Georg von Küchler | Erich von Manstein | Friedrich Paulus | Ewald von Kleist | Maximilian von Weichs | Ernst Busch | Wolfram von Richthofen | Walther Model | Ferdinand Schörner | Robert Ritter von Greim Note: This article is about the military usage of the word marshal. For other usages, see the end of this article. ... Generalfeldmarschall (General Field Marshal, usually translated simply as Field Marshal, and sometimes written only as Feldmarschall) was a rank in the armies of several German states and also of the Holy Roman Empire and Austrian Empire which could be granted to active officers only in wartime. ... Mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 18 km (over 11 miles) into the air. ... Werner von Blomberg Werner Eduard Fritz von Blomberg (September 2, 1878-March 22, 1946) was a leading member of the German Army prior to World War II. Born in Stargard, Pomerania, Germany, Werner von Blomberg joined the army at a young age and attended Germanys War College in 1904. ... Hermann Göring Hermann Wilhelm Göring (also Goering or Goring in English) (January 12, 1893 – October 15, 1946) was an early member of the Nazi party, founder of the Gestapo, and one of the main perpetrators of Nazi Germany. ... Walther von Brauchitsch (October 4, 1881, Berlin - October 18, 1948, Hamburg) was commander-in-chief of the Wehrmacht in the early years of World War II. Brauchitsch was commissioned in the Prussian Guard in 1900. ... Albert Kesselring (August 8, 1881 _ July 16, 1960) was a German Generalfeldmarschall who commanded Army Group C during World War II. He was nicknamed Smiling Albert or smiling Kesselring. He was born in Marktsteft, Germany, in 1881 . ... Generalfeldmarschall Wilhelm Keitel Wilhelm Bodewin Johann Gustav Keitel (September 22, 1882 - October 16, 1946) was a German Field Marshal (Generalfeldmarschall) and a senior military leader during World War II. Early life and career He was born in Helmscherode near Hanover, Germany, the son of Carl Keitel, a middle-class landowner. ... Günther von Kluge Günther von Kluge (nicknamed Hans) (October 30, 1882 - August 19, 1944), was a German military leader. ... Field Marshal Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb (September 5, 1876 - April 29, 1956) commanded Germanys Seventh Military District as a lieutenant general before the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party. ... Generalfeldmarschall Fedor von Bock Fedor von Bock (December 3, 1880 - May 4, 1945) was a German field marshal during World War II. He was born in Küstrin, Germany. ... Wilhelm List (Siegmund Wilhelm von List) (May 14, 1880 - August 17, 1971), was a German Field Marshal during World War II. During 1939 he was General Officer Commanding the German 14th Army in Poland. ... Erwin von Witzleben (December 4, 1881 - August 8, 1944) was a German Generalfeldmarschall. ... Field-Marshal Walther von Reichenau Walther von Reichenau (August 16, 1884 - January 17, 1942), German military commander, was the son of a Prussian general and joined the German Army in 1902. ... Air Marshall Erhard Milch Erhard Milch (March 30, 1892 – January 25, 1972) was an official of the Nazi government who oversaw the development of the Luftwaffe as part of the re-armament of Germany following World War I. Milch was born in Wilhelmshaven. ... Hugo Sperrle Hugo Sperrle (February 7, 1885 - April 2, 1953), was a German field marshal of the airforce Luftwaffe during World War II. He joined the German Army in 1903 and transferred to the Luftstreitkräfte (German Army Air Service) at the start of World War I, serving as an... Generalfeldmarschall Gerd von Rundstedt Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt (December 12, 1875 - February 24, 1953) was a Field Marshal of the German Army during World War II. He remains known as one of Germanys best generals, as well as for being apolitical throughout his career. ... Erwin Rommel Erwin Johannes Eugen Rommel (November 15, 1891 – October 14, 1944) was one of the most distinguished German Field Marshals and commander of the Deutsches Afrika Korps in World War II. He is also known by his nickname The Desert Fox (Wüstenfuchs). ... Field Marshal Georg von Küchler Georg Karl Friedrich Wilhelm von Küchler (May 30, 1881 _ May 25, 1968) was a German field marshal during World War II. Born in Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Küchler led the German 18th Army in 1940 in the invasion of neutral Holland... Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein Erich von Manstein (November 24, 1887–June 10, 1973) was one of the most prominent commanders of Nazi Germanys Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) during World War II. He attained the rank of Field Marshal (Generalfeldmarschall). ... Field Marshal Friedrich Paulus Friedrich Wilhelm Ernst Paulus (September 23, 1890, Breitenau –February 1, 1957, Dresden) was a German general, later promoted to field marshal, during World War II. Paulus was the son of a schoolteacher. ... Paul Ludwig Ewald von Kleist (August 8, 1881 - November 13 or 16 1954) was a leading German Field Marshal during World War II. Born into an aristocratic family in Braunfels an der Lahn, von Kleist was educated in a German military school and served as a lieutenant of hussars and... Maximilian von Weichs Maximilian Maria Joseph Karl Gabriel Lamoral Reichsfreiherr von Weichs zu Glon (12 November 1881 - 27 September 1954) was a German Generalfeldmarschall and a military leader in World War II. He was born into a noble family at Dessau, a son of an army Colonel. ... Ernst Busch (6 July 1885 - 17 July 1945) was a German field marshall during World War II. He was born in Essen-Steele, Germany, and died in a prisoner of war camp in Aldershot, England. ... Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen (10 October 1895 - 12 July 1945) He was born in Barzdorf. ... Walther Model (pronounced modal) (January 24, 1891–April 21, 1945) was a German general, and later a Field Marshal, during World War II. He was noted for his defensive skills, and was nicknamed Hitlers fireman. Model served as an infantry officer in World War I. During the Polish and... Field Marshal Ferdinand Schörner Ferdinand Schörner (December 5, 1892 - February 7, 1973) was a German general and later field marshal during World War II. He was born in Munich, Bavaria. ... Robert Ritter von Greim Robert Ritter von Greim or Robert Greim (June 22, 1892 - May 24, 1945) was a German pilot and army officer. ...

Honorary: Eduard von Böhm-Ermolli Eduard Freiherr von Böhm-Ermolli (1856 - 1941) was an Italian-born Austrian officer during World War I who rose to the rank of Field Marshal in the Austro-Hungarian Army. ...

 
German Grand Admirals (Großadmiral) of World War II

Erich Raeder | Karl Dönitz Alternate meaning: Grand Admiral (Star Wars). ... German Grand Admiral Sleeve Insignia Grand Admiral Shoulder Insignia In the German Navy the rank of Grand Admiral (Großadmiral) was considered the highest Naval rank. ... Mushroom cloud from the nuclear explosion over Nagasaki rising 18 km (over 11 miles) into the air. ... Erich Raeder. ...


 
 

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