Generalfeldmarschall Erich von Manstein

Erich von Lewinski, genannt von Manstein, Army Field Marshal, born in Berlin on November 24, 1887, winner of the Iron Cross 1st Class in World War I, commander of the 11th Army, commander Army Group South, winner of the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves and Swords, dismissed by Hitler in 1944, author of memoirs, Lost Victories, died on June 10, 1973 in Ebenhausen, said about field commanders: “Intelligence, knowledge and experience are telling prerequisites.  Lack of these may, if necessary, be compensated for by good general staff officers.  Strength of character and inner fortitude, however, are decisive factors.  The confidence of the men in the ranks rests upon a man’s strength of character.”  (2,000 Quotes From Hitler’s 1,000-Year Reich)


Colonel General Heinz Guderian, chief of the panzer forces, recorded in his notes that as of May 3, 1943, Army Group South had fifty-three Tiger tanks, while Army Group Center had twenty.  By May 9 sixteen more Tigers were enroute to Army Group South.  By June 10, a further twenty-eight Tiger tanks were on trains headed to von Manstein, while thirty-one Tigers were enroute to Army Group Center.  Therefore, according to Guderian’s calculations, by the start of the Kursk Offensive, Army Group South would have ninety-seven Tiger tanks on hand while Army Group Center would have just fifty-one.  (Waffen-SS Tiger Crews at Kursk: The Men of SS Panzer Regiments 1, 2 & 3 in Operation Citadel, July 5-15, 1943)