View Full Version : The Rommel Papers

Omar Bradley
02-16-2010, 05:32 PM
I just received my copy of The Rommel Papers (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0306801574?ie=UTF8&tag=lazerguy-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=0306801574) from Amazon today, I can't wait to get into it. Has anyone read it?http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=lazerguy-20&l=as2&o=1&a=0306801574

02-24-2010, 08:59 AM
I just went to the Amazon site and as soon as the book is made available on Kindle, I will get it. It really looks interesting, and I plan to keep up with it's reviews until it's available on Kindle. So far, it has received 5 star reviews.

02-28-2010, 02:48 PM
The book is excellent:

It began with the Rommel account of may in 1940 during the panzer blitz through Belgium and the upper France.

The second Parts deal with afrika from february 1941 to august 1942. During all the book there are several inserter side notes by Basil Liddel Hart correcting of adding some information the the general memoirs, particulary regarding british divisions formations and /or numbers. There is a n part of teh book wich actully is based on Fritz Bayerlein memois since the Rommel papers dealing with the defense against the british operation "Crusader" in late 1941 could not be found.

Is said that Rommel had an dettailed account of the facts of Normany fron june to July 1944 but those papers were destroyed shortly after his forced suicide.

The Rommel Papers is a jewel and it should be in every military history aficionado library, not only because is useful to know to know from inside how the famous german desert fox thought, but also because it was writed during wartime and published unmodified afterwars, is not the classic "retouched" memoir of a german commander who has passed sometime in allied captivity.

Carl Schwamberger
04-17-2010, 10:53 AM
Read it first nearly fourty years ago. Second time I read it in the 1980s I'd picked up a bit more knowledege about the campaigns Rommel fought it. There were amny details affecting these battles and campaigns Rommel was unaware of. That affected his evaluation of events & of course the readers understanding. other items were higly secret at the time & Rommelmakes no mention of those in his text.

ie: When fighting in Lybia in 1941 Rommel had the use of a German signals intelligence battalion. This unit was very effective in intercepting and anlayzing the tactical radio signals of the British. Rommel had a daily message report of the British signals, which was throughly analyzed by his intelligence staff. Also the Italians had obtained a copy of the US 'Black' code used by the military attache in Egypt. From the detailed reports the US officers were sending back to the US Rommels intelligence staff were able to anticipate much of the British operations in 1941-42. In the second half of 1942 the italian source was shut off, and the British destroyed the radio signals intel unit in a raid. Those two events blinded Rommels intelligence staff. Neither of these is mentioned in the Rommel Papers tho Rommel understood how important they were.

Conversely Rommel did not know the British were able to decode his own radio traffic in 1942, reversing the situation in the latter half of 1942.

In other situations Rommel did not have acess to many of the decisions or PoV of the Allied generals, which skews his judgement of events. This is not to say Romels papers are useless. They are very valuable. Rather, to properly read them you need to accumulate the larger picture.

04-28-2010, 08:50 PM
Well, i said it before the most interesting part are not the description of battles that he might confuse some details ( as you might noted Liddel Hart had a lot side anotations correcting that ) but the fact is not a post-war memoir. You know in tha several books written after the war there are always some "editing" of the truth ( specially the soldiers or generals fighting in the Eastern Front ) for reason varying form war crimes, bad military choices, selfishness, etc. Humans are humans and the german are too so they always wrote with some distance of those facts giving a "clener" look of the war wich in several cases wasnt.

Rommel writes his papers with what he feels at the moment and that remained unchanged until our days, that is priceless in my modest opinion.