I posted this in the photo section, but thought it may be interest here too:

A historical listserve I'm a member of made me aware of this article: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010...e-adolf-hitler

Basically, through study of diaries and other personal documents of Hitler's comrades-in-arms of the First World War, the portrayal Hitler cultivated of himself as a heroic message-runner is now questionable, if not an out-right total lie.

One quote from the article: "Hitler served as a runner but, armed with new evidence, Weber realized that historians had not distinguished between regimental runners, a relatively safe job, and battalion or company runners, who had to brave machine-gun fire between trenches. Hitler was the former, a runner at regimental HQ, several miles from the front, and living in relative comfort." Another quote: "Speaking of Hitler's famous first-class Iron Cross – the second class was a relatively common award – Weber said that this was often received by those in contact with more senior officers, typically those posted to regimental headquarters, rather than combat soldiers." Interestingly, the article also says the officer who recommended Hitler for his Iron Cross (Hugo Gutmann) was ... a Jew!

More info is to be made available in a soon-to-be released book, Hitler's First War, by Oxford University Press.