Auction 102

Lot 12:

KARL DONITZ LAST WEHRMACHT REPORT 9 MAY 1945

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Start price: $100

Estimated price:

Auction house commission: 25%

(1891-1980) German Grand Admiral and Supreme Commander of the German Navy, he briefly succeeded Hitler as Reichspresident and Supreme Commander of the Wehrmacht until Mai 23, when he was arrested. Here is a printed copy, 1 page, 8.25 x 11.75 inches, of the last Wehrmacht report of World War II, from the headquarters of the Grand Admiral 9. May 1945. Karl Donitz signs at the conclusion ‘Donitz 74’. Even at this late stage, the last Wehrmacht report tries to uphold the myth of German war strength. The report reads in part: ‘In East Prussia, German divisions bravely defended the mouth of the Vistula…General of the Panzer Troops von Saucken, was awarded the diamonds for oak leaves with swords for the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross in recognition of the exemplary attitude of his soldiers…Our armies in Courland…refused any premature handover…At midnight on the German side, in accordance with the signed conditions, the fight and all movements ceased…The defenders of Breslau…succumbed to the enemy superiority at the last hour after a heroic struggle…our troops in Norway and the garrisons of the Aegean Islands have preserved the German soldier’s honor in obedience and discipline…The guns have been silent on all fronts since midnight…the Wehrmacht stopped the fight, which had become hopeless…six years of heroic wrestling. It brought us great victories, but also heavy defeats…the German Wehrmacht is honorable inferior to a vast superior force…The German soldier…has always done something unforgettable in the highest commitment for his people…Even the enemy will not withhold respect for the achievements and sacrifices…Every soldier can proudly lay down his arms…The Wehrmacht commemorates…their comrades who remained before the enemy. The dead commit to unconditional loyalty, obedience and discipline towards the fatherland, which is bleeding from countless wounds.’

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