Salzburg "salt castle", is the fourth-largest city in Austria and the capital of Federal State of Salzburg. Its historic centre is renowned for its baroque architecture and is one of the best-preserved city centres north of the Alps, with 27 churches, it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. The city has a large population of students. Tourists visit Salzburg to tour the historic centre and the scenic Alpine surroundings. Salzburg was the birthplace of the 18th-century composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. In the mid‑20th century, the city was film The Sound of Music. Traces of human settlements have been found in the area; the first settlements in Salzburg continuous with the present were by the Celts around the 5th century BC. Around 15 BC the Roman Empire merged the settlements into one city. At this time, the city was called "Juvavum" and was awarded the status of a Roman municipium in 45 AD. Juvavum developed into an important town of the Roman province of Noricum. After the Norican frontier’s collapse, Juvavum declined so that by the late 7th century it nearly became a ruin.
The Life of Saint Rupert credits the 8th-century saint with the city's rebirth. When Theodo of Bavaria asked Rupert to become bishop c. 700, Rupert reconnoitered the river for the site of his basilica. Rupert chose Juvavum, ordained priests, annexed the manor of Piding. Rupert named the city "Salzburg", he travelled to evangelise among pagans. The name Salzburg means "Salt Castle"; the name derives from the barges carrying salt on the River Salzach, which were subject to a toll in the 8th century as was customary for many communities and cities on European rivers. Hohensalzburg Fortress, the city's fortress, was built in 1077 by Archbishop Gebhard, who made it his residence, it was expanded during the following centuries. Independence from Bavaria was secured in the late 14th century. Salzburg was the seat of the Archbishopric of a prince-bishopric of the Holy Roman Empire; as the Reformation movement gained steam, riots broke out among peasants in the areas in and around Salzburg. The city was occupied during the German Peasants' War, the Archbishop had to flee to the safety of the fortress.
It was besieged for three months in 1525. Tensions were quelled, the city's independence led to an increase in wealth and prosperity, culminating in the late 16th to 18th centuries under the Prince Archbishops Wolf Dietrich von Raitenau, Markus Sittikus, Paris Lodron, it was in the 17th century that Italian architects rebuilt the city centre as it is today along with many palaces. On 31 October 1731, the 214th anniversary of the 95 Theses, Archbishop Count Leopold Anton von Firmian signed an Edict of Expulsion, the Emigrationspatent, directing all Protestant citizens to recant their non-Catholic beliefs. 21,475 citizens were expelled from Salzburg. Most of them accepted an offer by King Friedrich Wilhelm I of Prussia, travelling the length and breadth of Germany to their new homes in East Prussia; the rest settled in other Protestant states in the British colonies in America. In 1772–1803, under archbishop Hieronymus Graf von Colloredo, Salzburg was a centre of late Illuminism. In 1803, the archbishopric was secularised by Emperor Napoleon.
In 1805, Salzburg was annexed to the Austrian Empire, along with the Berchtesgaden Provostry. In 1809, the territory of Salzburg was transferred to the Kingdom of Bavaria after Austria's defeat at Wagram. After the Congress of Vienna with the Treaty of Munich, Salzburg was definitively returned to Austria, but without Rupertigau and Berchtesgaden, which remained with Bavaria. Salzburg was integrated into the Province of Salzach and Salzburgerland was ruled from Linz. In 1850, Salzburg's status was restored as the capital of the Duchy of Salzburg, a crownland of the Austrian Empire; the city became part of Austria-Hungary in 1866 as the capital of a crownland of the Austrian Empire. The nostalgia of the Romantic Era led to increased tourism. In 1892, a funicular was installed to facilitate tourism to Hohensalzburg Fortress Following World War I and the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. In 1918, it represented the residual German-speaking territories of the Austrian heartlands; this was replaced by the First Austrian Republic after the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye.
The Anschluss took place on 12 March 1938, one day before a scheduled referendum on Austria's independence. German troops moved into the city. Political opponents, Jewish citizens and other minorities were subsequently arrested and deported to concentration camps; the synagogue was destroyed. After Germany invaded the Soviet Union, several POW camps for prisoners from the Soviet Union and other enemy nations were organized in the city. During the Nazi occupation, a Romani camp was built in Salzburg-Maxglan, it was an Arbeitserziehungslager. It operated as a Zwischenlager, holding Roma before their deportation to German extermination camps or ghettos in German-occupied territories in eastern Europe. Allied bombing killed 550 inhabitants. Fifteen air strikes destroyed 46 percent of the city's buildings those a
Generaloberst, in English colonel general, was, in Germany and Austria-Hungary—the German Reichswehr and Wehrmacht, the Austro-Hungarian Common Army, the East German National People's Army, as well as the respective police services—the second highest general officer rank, ranking above full general but below general field marshal. It was equivalent to Generaladmiral in the Kriegsmarine until 1945, or to Flottenadmiral in the Volksmarine until 1990; the rank was the highest military rank awarded in peacetime. In general, a Generaloberst had the same privileges as a general field marshal. A literal translation of Generaloberst would be "uppermost general", but it is translated as "colonel-general" by analogy to Oberst, "colonel", including in countries where the rank was adopted, e.g. in Russia. "Oberst" derives from the superlative form of Germanic ober, cognate to English over, thus "Superior General" might be a more idiomatic rendering. The rank was created in 1854 for Emperor William I—then Prince of Prussia—because traditionally members of the royal family were not promoted to the rank of field marshal.
During the 19th century the rank was honorary and only held by members of the princely families or the Governor of Berlin. Regular promotion of professional officers to the grade did not begin until 1911. Since the rank of Generalfeldmarschall was reserved for wartime promotions, the additional rank of a "supreme general in the capacity of a field marshal"—the Generaloberst im Range eines Generalfeldmarschalls—was created for promotions during peacetime; such generals were entitled to wear four pips on their shoulder boards, compared to the normal three. As such, Generaloberst could be a peacetime equivalent of the general field marshal rank. Generaloberst was the second highest general officer rank—below field marshal—in the Prussian Army as well as in the German Empire, the Weimar Republic, the Wehrmacht of Nazi Germany, the East German Nationale Volksarmee; as military ranks were used for other uniformed services, the rank was used by the Waffen-SS and the Ordnungspolizei of Nazi Germany, the Volkspolizei and Stasi of East Germany.
In East Germany, the rank was junior to the general of the army, as well as to the extant, never awarded, rank of Marschall der DDR. In 1915 the Generaloberst - Vezérezredes rank was introduced to the Austro-Hungarian Common Army, it was the second highest behind the Feldmarschall - Tábornagy rank. See 1916 Erzherzog Joseph Ferdinand von Österreich-Toskana Friedrich Graf von Beck-Rzikowsky Eduard Graf Paar Arthur Freiherr von Bolfras Friedrich Freiherr von Georgi Karl Freiherr von Pflanzer-Baltin Viktor Graf Dankl von Krasnik Karl Tersztyánszky von Nádas Adolf Freiherr von Rhemen zu Barensfeld Paul Freiherr Puhallo von Brlog Erzherzog Leopold Salvator von Österreich-Toskana Karl Graf von Kirchbach auf Lauterbach Karl Georg Graf Huyn Hermann Kusmanek von Burgneustädten Karl Křitek Wenzel Freiherr von Wurm Samuel Freiherr von Hazai Leopold Freiherr von Hauer Viktor Graf von Scheuchenstuel Stephan Freiherr Sarkotić von Lovčen Josef Freiherr Roth von Limanowa-Łapanów Arthur Freiherr Arz von Straußenburg Hugo Martiny von Malastów Rudolf Freiherr Stöger-Steiner von Steinstätten Alois Fürst Schönburg-Hartenstein Rank insignia of the German Empire 1871 until 1918, here shoulder strap of the German Imperial Army: twisted of silver- and golden-braids with three stars to "Colonel general".
December 27, 1911 – Carl von Horn, Minister of War August 1, 1914 – Otto Kreß von Kressenstein, Minister of War April 9, 1918 – Felix von Bothmer, commander-in chief in WW I March 20, 1854 – Wilhelm of Preußen, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall Jun 16,1871 – Albrecht of Preußen, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall September 2, 1873 – August Prinz von Württemberg and Governor of Berlin Juni 25, 1888 – Frederick I, Grand Duke of Baden, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall, Inspector of the Army September 19, 1888 – Alexander August Wilhelm von Pape, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall, Commander in den Marken and Governor of Berlin December 21, 1889 – Charles Alexander, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach March 20, 1890 – Otto von Bismarck, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall à la suite of the Army, 1st Chancellor of Germany October 18, 1901 – Leopold, Prince of Hohenzollern March 22, 1902 – Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg September 15, 1905 – Bernhard III, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall, Inspector of the Army September 15, 1905 – Frederick II, Grand Duke of Baden, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall, Inspector of the Army September 13, 1906 – Ernst Rudolf Max Edler von der Planitz, Inspector General of the Cavalry September 28, 1907 – Ernst I, Duke of Saxe-Altenburg, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall of the Prussian Army September 18, 1908 – Hans von Plessen, with the special rank of Generalfeldmarschall, Adjutant General of the Kaiser and Commander of the Great
Nazi Germany is the common English name for Germany between 1933 and 1945, when Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party controlled the country through a dictatorship. Under Hitler's rule, Germany was transformed into a totalitarian state that controlled nearly all aspects of life via the Gleichschaltung legal process; the official name of the state was Deutsches Reich until 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich from 1943 to 1945. Nazi Germany is known as the Third Reich, meaning "Third Realm" or "Third Empire", the first two being the Holy Roman Empire and the German Empire; the Nazi regime ended. Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany by the President of the Weimar Republic, Paul von Hindenburg, on 30 January 1933; the NSDAP began to eliminate all political opposition and consolidate its power. Hindenburg died on 2 August 1934 and Hitler became dictator of Germany by merging the offices and powers of the Chancellery and Presidency. A national referendum held 19 August 1934 confirmed Hitler as sole Führer of Germany.
All power was centralised in Hitler's person and his word became the highest law. The government was not a coordinated, co-operating body, but a collection of factions struggling for power and Hitler's favour. In the midst of the Great Depression, the Nazis restored economic stability and ended mass unemployment using heavy military spending and a mixed economy. Extensive public works were undertaken, including the construction of Autobahnen; the return to economic stability boosted the regime's popularity. Racism antisemitism, was a central feature of the regime; the Germanic peoples were considered by the Nazis to be the master race, the purest branch of the Aryan race. Discrimination and persecution against Jews and Romani people began in earnest after the seizure of power; the first concentration camps were established in March 1933. Jews and others deemed undesirable were imprisoned, liberals and communists were killed, imprisoned, or exiled. Christian churches and citizens that opposed Hitler's rule were oppressed, many leaders imprisoned.
Education focused on racial biology, population policy, fitness for military service. Career and educational opportunities for women were curtailed. Recreation and tourism were organised via the Strength Through Joy program, the 1936 Summer Olympics showcased Germany on the international stage. Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels made effective use of film, mass rallies, Hitler's hypnotic oratory to influence public opinion; the government controlled artistic expression, promoting specific art forms and banning or discouraging others. The Nazi regime dominated neighbours through military threats in the years leading up to war. Nazi Germany made aggressive territorial demands, threatening war if these were not met, it seized Austria and Czechoslovakia in 1938 and 1939. Germany signed a non-aggression pact with the USSR, invaded Poland on 1 September 1939, launching World War II in Europe. By early 1941, Germany controlled much of Europe. Reichskommissariats took control of conquered areas and a German administration was established in the remainder of Poland.
Germany exploited labour of both its occupied territories and its allies. In the Holocaust, millions of Jews and other peoples deemed undesirable by the state were imprisoned, murdered in Nazi concentration camps and extermination camps, or shot. While the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 was successful, the Soviet resurgence and entry of the US into the war meant the Wehrmacht lost the initiative on the Eastern Front in 1943 and by late 1944 had been pushed back to the pre-1939 border. Large-scale aerial bombing of Germany escalated in 1944 and the Axis powers were driven back in Eastern and Southern Europe. After the Allied invasion of France, Germany was conquered by the Soviet Union from the east and the other Allies from the west, capitulated in May 1945. Hitler's refusal to admit defeat led to massive destruction of German infrastructure and additional war-related deaths in the closing months of the war; the victorious Allies initiated a policy of denazification and put many of the surviving Nazi leadership on trial for war crimes at the Nuremberg trials.
The official name of the state was Deutsches Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Großdeutsches Reich from 1943 to 1945, while common English terms are "Nazi Germany" and "Third Reich". The latter, adopted by Nazi propaganda as Drittes Reich, was first used in Das Dritte Reich, a 1923 book by Arthur Moeller van den Bruck; the book counted the Holy Roman Empire as the German Empire as the second. Germany was known as the Weimar Republic during the years 1919 to 1933, it was a republic with a semi-presidential system. The Weimar Republic faced numerous problems, including hyperinflation, political extremism, contentious relationships with the Allied victors of World War I, a series of failed attempts at coalition government by divided political parties. Severe setbacks to the German economy began after World War I ended because of reparations payments required under the 1919 Treaty of Versailles; the government printed money to make the payments and to repay the country's war debt, but the resulting hyperinflation led to inflated prices for consumer goods, economic chaos, food riots.
When the government defaulted on their reparations payments in January 1923, French troops occupied German industrial areas along the Ruhr and widespread civil unrest followed. The National Socialist German Workers' Party (National
Allied invasion of Sicily
The Allied invasion of Sicily, codenamed Operation Husky, was a major campaign of World War II, in which the Allies took the island of Sicily from the Axis powers. It began with a large amphibious and airborne operation, followed by a six-week land campaign, initiated the Italian Campaign. Husky began on the night of 9–10 July 1943, ended on 17 August. Strategically, Husky achieved; the Italian leader, Benito Mussolini, was toppled from power in Italy and the way was opened for the Allied invasion of Italy. The German leader, Adolf Hitler, "canceled a major offensive at Kursk after only a week, in part to divert forces to Italy", resulting in a reduction of German strength on the Eastern Front; the collapse of Italy necessitated German troops replacing the Italians in Italy and to a lesser extent the Balkans, resulting in one fifth of the entire German army being diverted from the east to southern Europe, a proportion that would remain until near the end of the war. The plan for Operation Husky called for the amphibious assault of Sicily by two Allied armies, one landing on the south-eastern and one on the central southern coast.
The amphibious assaults were to be supported by naval gunfire, as well as tactical bombing and close air support by the combined air forces. As such, the operation required a complex command structure, incorporating land and air forces; the overall commander was American General Dwight D. Eisenhower, as Commander-in-Chief of all the Allied forces in North Africa. British General Sir Harold Alexander acted as his second-in-command and as the 15th Army Group commander; the American Major General Walter Bedell Smith was appointed as Eisenhower's Chief of Staff. The overall Naval Force Commander was the British Admiral Sir Andrew Cunningham; the Allied land forces were from the American and Canadian armies, were structured as two task forces. The Eastern Task Force was led by General Sir Bernard Montgomery and consisted of the British Eighth Army; the Western Task Force was commanded by Lieutenant General George S. Patton and consisted of the American Seventh Army; the two task force commanders reported to Alexander as commander of the 15th Army Group.
The U. S. Seventh Army consisted of three infantry divisions, organized under II Corps, commanded by Lieutenant General Omar Bradley; the 1st and 3rd Infantry Divisions, commanded by Major Generals Terry Allen and Lucian Truscott sailed from ports in Tunisia, while the 45th Infantry Division, under Major General Troy H. Middleton, sailed from the United States via Oran in Algeria; the 2nd Armored Division, under Major General Hugh Joseph Gaffey sailing from Oran, was to be a floating reserve and be fed into combat as required. On 15 July, Patton reorganized his command into two corps by creating a new Provisional Corps headquarters, commanded by his deputy army commander, Major General Geoffrey Keyes; the British Eighth Army had four infantry divisions and an independent infantry brigade organized under XIII Corps, commanded by Lieutenant-General Sir Miles Dempsey, XXX Corps, commanded by Lieutenant-General Sir Oliver Leese. The two divisions of XIII Corps, the 5th and 50th Infantry Divisions, commanded by Major-Generals Horatio Berney-Ficklin and Sidney Kirkman, sailed from Suez in Egypt.
The formations of XXX Corps sailed from more diverse ports: the 1st Canadian Infantry Division, under Major-General Guy Simonds, sailed from the United Kingdom, the 51st Infantry Division, under Major-General Douglas Wimberley, from Tunisia and Malta, the 231st Independent Infantry Brigade Group from Suez. The 1st Canadian Infantry Division was included in Operation Husky at the insistence of the Canadian Prime Minister, William Mackenzie King, the Canadian Military Headquarters in the United Kingdom; this request was granted by the British, displacing the veteran British 3rd Infantry Division. The change was not finalized until 27 April 1943, when Lieutenant-General Andrew McNaughton commanding the Canadian First Army in the United Kingdom, deemed Operation Husky to be a viable military undertaking and agreed to the detachment of both the 1st Canadian Infantry Division and the 1st Canadian Tank Brigade; the "Red Patch Division" was added to Leese's XXX Corps to become part of the British Eighth Army.
In addition to the amphibious landings, airborne troops were to be flown in to support both the Western and Eastern Task Forces. To the east, the British 1st Airborne Division, commanded by Major-General George F. Hopkinson, was to seize vital bridges and high ground in support of the British Eighth Army; the initial plan dictated that the U. S. 82nd Airborne Division, commanded by Major General Matthew Ridgway, was to be held as a tactical reserve in Tunisia. Allied naval forces were grouped into two task forces to transport and support the invading armies; the Eastern Naval Task Force was formed from the British Mediterranean Fleet and was commanded by Admiral Bertram Ramsay. The Western Naval Task Force was formed around the U. S. Eighth Fleet, commanded by Admiral Henry Kent Hewitt; the two naval task force commanders reported to Admiral Cunningham as overall Naval Forces Commander. Two sloops of the Royal Indian Navy - HMIS Sutlej and HMIS Jumna - participated. At the time of Operation Husky, the Allied air forces in North Africa and the Mediterranean were organized into the Mediterranean Air Command under Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Tedder.
The major sub
House Order of Hohenzollern
The House Order of Hohenzollern was a dynastic order of knighthood of the House of Hohenzollern awarded to military commissioned officers and civilians of comparable status. Associated with the various versions of the order were crosses and medals which could be awarded to lower-ranking soldiers and civilians; the House Order of Hohenzollern was instituted on December 5, 1841, by joint decree of Prince Konstantin of Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Prince Karl Anton of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. These two principalities in southern Germany were Catholic collateral lines of the House of Hohenzollern, cousins to the Protestant ruling house of Prussia. On August 23, 1851, after the two principalities had been annexed by Prussia, the order was adopted by the Prussian branch of the house. Although the two principalities had become an administrative region of the Prussian kingdom, the princely lines continued to award the order as a house order; the Prussian version was known as the Royal House Order of Hohenzollern, to distinguish it from the Princely House Order of Hohenzollern.
Although Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated in 1918 as German Emperor and King of Prussia, he did not relinquish his role as Head of the Royal House and as such he was still able to confer the Royal House Order. The Princely House Order continued to be awarded, after the fall of the German Monarchy. Another development occurred in 1935. Prince Karl Anton's second son, Karl Eitel Friedrich of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, had become prince and king of Romania as Carol I. Carol I had died childless and was succeeded by his nephew Ferdinand I of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. During the reign of Ferdinand's son King Carol II, the Romanian government established its own version of the House Order of Hohenzollern, known in Romanian as Ordinul "Bene Merenti" al Casei Domnitoare; this form of the order existed until the Romanian monarchy was abolished in 1947. The Royal House Order of Hohenzollern came in the following classes: Grand Commander Commander Knight Member"Member" was a lesser class for soldiers who were not officers, as well as civilians.
The Members' Cross with swords, was a rare distinction for non-commissioned officers and the like. Another decoration, the Members' Eagle was given as a long-service award to lesser officials such as schoolteachers; the "Eagles" were civilian awards, could not be awarded with swords. All other grades could be awarded with swords. During World War I, the Knight's Cross with Swords of the Royal House Order of Hohenzollern became in effect an intermediate award between the Iron Cross 1st Class and the Pour le Mérite for Prussian junior officers; when awarded with swords it was worn on the ribbon of the Iron Cross. The Princely House Order of Hohenzollern came in the following classes: Cross of Honour 1st Class Commander's Cross of Honour Cross of Honour 2nd Class Cross of Honour 3rd Class Golden Cross of Merit Silver Cross of Merit Golden Medal of Honour Silver Medal of Merit The Crosses of Merit, Golden Medal of Honour and Silver Medal of Merit were lesser grades for non-commissioned officers, enlisted men and their civilian equivalents.
All grades could be awarded with swords. During World War I, the appropriate grade of the Princely House Order was awarded to officers and men of Füsilier-Regiment Fürst Karl Anton von Hohenzollern Nr. 40, an infantry regiment raised in the principalities of Hohenzollern and whose honorary chief was the Prince of Hohenzollern. Soldier in the regiment's sister reserve and Landwehr regiments often received the decoration. Unlike the Royal House Order, awards of the Princely House Order were made on the standard ribbon of the order regardless of whether they were with or without swords; the classes of the Romanian version of the House Order were the same as those of the Princely House Order, except that the Cross of Honour 3rd Class of the Romanian version could be awarded with Oak leaves, the Golden and Silver Medals could be awarded with a Crown. As with the Prussian and Hohenzollern versions, crossed swords could be used to indicate a wartime or combat award. Given the short existence of the order and the fact that Romania had a number of other decorations for valor and military merit, awards of the Romanian version of the House Order with swords are uncommon.
The badge of the House Order of Hohenzollern was a cross pattée with curved arms. There were differences in the enameling of the arms of the cross for the Royal and Romanian versions, but all featured white enamel on the higher classes and a black enameled stripe near the sides of the cross. Between the arms of the cross was a wreath of laurel leaves and oak leaves; the cross bore a center medallion.
Gerd von Rundstedt
Karl Rudolf Gerd von Rundstedt was a Field Marshal in the Wehrmacht of Nazi Germany during World War II. Born into a Prussian family with a long military tradition, Rundstedt entered the Prussian Army in 1892. During World War I, he served as a staff officer. In the inter-war years, he continued his military career, reaching the rank of Colonel General before retiring in 1938, he was recalled at the beginning of World War II as commander of Army Group South in the invasion of Poland. He commanded Army Group A during the Battle of France, requested the Halt Order during the Battle of Dunkirk, he was promoted to the rank of Field Marshal in 1940. In the invasion of the Soviet Union, he commanded Army Group South, responsible for the largest encirclement in history, the Battle of Kiev, he was relieved of command in December 1941, but was recalled in 1942 and appointed Commander-in-Chief in the West. He was dismissed after the German defeat in Normandy in July 1944, but was again recalled as Commander-in-Chief in the West in September, holding this post until his final dismissal by Adolf Hitler in March 1945.
Rundstedt was aware of the various plots to depose Hitler, but refused to support them. After the war, he was charged with war crimes, but did not face trial due to his age and poor health, he was released in 1949, died in 1953. Gerd von Rundstedt was born in Aschersleben, north of Halle in Prussian Saxony, he was the eldest son of Gerd Arnold Konrad von Rundstedt, a cavalry officer who served in the Franco-Prussian War. The Rundstedts are an old Junker family that traced its origins to the 12th century and classed as members of the Uradel, or old nobility, although they held no titles and were not wealthy. All the Rundstedt men since the time of Frederick the Great had served in the Prussian Army. Rundstedt's mother, Adelheid Fischer, was of Huguenot descent, he was the eldest of four brothers, all of whom became Army officers. Rundstedt's education followed the path ordained for Prussian military families: the junior cadet college at Diez, near Koblenz the military academy at Lichterfelde in Berlin.
Unable to meet the cost of joining a cavalry regiment, Rundstedt joined the 83rd Infantry Regiment in March 1892 as a cadet officer. The regiment was based at Kassel in Hesse-Kassel, which he came to regard as his home town and where he maintained a home until 1945, he undertook further training at the military college at Hannover, before being commissioned as a lieutenant in June 1893. He made a good impression on his superiors. In 1896 he was made regimental adjutant, in 1903 he was sent to the prestigious War Academy in Berlin for a three-year staff officer training course. At the end of his course Rundstedt was described as "an outstandingly able officer... well suited for the General Staff." He married Luise “Bila” von Goetz in January 1902 and their only child, Hans Gerd von Rundstedt, was born in January 1903. Rundstedt joined the General Staff of the German Army in April 1907 serving there until July 1914, when he was appointed chief of operations to the 22nd Reserve Infantry Division.
This division was part of XI Corps, which in turn was part of General Alexander von Kluck's First Army. In 1914 this Army was deployed along the Belgian border, in preparation for the invasion of Belgium and France, in accordance with the German plan for victory in the west known as the Schlieffen Plan. Rundstedt served as 22nd Division's chief of staff during the invasion of Belgium, but he saw no action since his Division was held in reserve during the initial advance. In December 1914, suffering from a lung ailment, he was promoted to Major and transferred to the military government of Antwerp. In April 1915, his health recovered, he was posted as chief of staff to the 86th Infantry Division, serving as part of General Max von Gallwitz's forces on the Eastern Front. In September he was once again given an administrative post, as part of the military government of German-occupied Poland, based in Warsaw, he stayed in this post until November 1916, until he was promoted by being made chief of staff to an Army Corps, XXV Reserve Corps, fighting in the Carpathians.
Here he saw much action against the Russians. In October 1917 he was appointed chief of staff to LIII Corps, in northern Poland; the following month, the October Revolution led to the collapse of the Russian armies and the end of the war on the eastern front. In August 1918 Rundstedt was transferred to the west, as chief of staff to XV Corps in Alsace, under General Felix Graf von Bothmer. Here he remained until the end of the war in November. Bothmer described him as "a wholly excellent staff officer and amiable comrade." He was awarded the Iron Cross, first class, was recommended for the Pour le Mérite, but did not receive it. He thus ended World War I, although still a major, with a high reputation as a staff officer. Rundstedt's Corps disintegrated in the wake of defeat and the German Revolution, but while most officers were demobilised, he remained in the Army at the request of General Wilhelm Groener, who assumed leadership of the shattered Army, he rejoined the General Staff, but this was abolished under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, signed in June 1919.
In October Rundstedt was posted to the staff of Military District V, based in Stuttgart, under General Walter von Bergmann. He was there when the attempted military coup known as the Kapp Putsch took place in March 1920. Bergmann and Rundstedt, like most of the Army leadership, refused to support the coup attempt: Rundstedt described it as "a failure and a stupid one at that." This was not an indication of any fondness
The German Empire known as Imperial Germany, was the German nation state that existed from the unification of Germany in 1871 until the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1918. It was founded in 1871 when the south German states, except for Austria, joined the North German Confederation. On 1 January 1871, the new constitution came into force that changed the name of the federal state and introduced the title of emperor for Wilhelm I, King of Prussia from the House of Hohenzollern. Berlin remained its capital, Otto von Bismarck remained Chancellor, the head of government; as these events occurred, the Prussian-led North German Confederation and its southern German allies were still engaged in the Franco-Prussian War. The German Empire consisted of 26 states, most of them ruled by royal families, they included four kingdoms, six grand duchies, five duchies, seven principalities, three free Hanseatic cities, one imperial territory. Although Prussia was one of several kingdoms in the realm, it contained about two thirds of Germany's population and territory.
Prussian dominance was established constitutionally. After 1850, the states of Germany had become industrialized, with particular strengths in coal, iron and railways. In 1871, Germany had a population of 41 million people. A rural collection of states in 1815, the now united Germany became predominantly urban. During its 47 years of existence, the German Empire was an industrial and scientific giant, gaining more Nobel Prizes in science than any other country. By 1900, Germany was the largest economy in Europe, surpassing the United Kingdom, as well as the second-largest in the world, behind only the United States. From 1867 to 1878/9, Otto von Bismarck's tenure as the first and to this day longest reigning Chancellor was marked by relative liberalism, but it became more conservative afterwards. Broad reforms and the Kulturkampf marked his period in the office. Late in Bismarck's chancellorship and in spite of his personal opposition, Germany became involved in colonialism. Claiming much of the leftover territory, yet unclaimed in the Scramble for Africa, it managed to build the third-largest colonial empire after the British and the French ones.
As a colonial state, it sometimes clashed with other European powers the British Empire. Germany became a great power, boasting a developing rail network, the world's strongest army, a fast-growing industrial base. In less than a decade, its navy became second only to Britain's Royal Navy. After the removal of Otto von Bismarck by Wilhelm II in 1890, the Empire embarked on Weltpolitik – a bellicose new course that contributed to the outbreak of World War I. In addition, Bismarck's successors were incapable of maintaining their predecessor's complex and overlapping alliances which had kept Germany from being diplomatically isolated; this period was marked by various factors influencing the Emperor's decisions, which were perceived as contradictory or unpredictable by the public. In 1879, the German Empire consolidated the Dual Alliance with Austria-Hungary, followed by the Triple Alliance with Italy in 1882, it retained strong diplomatic ties to the Ottoman Empire. When the great crisis of 1914 arrived, Italy left the alliance and the Ottoman Empire formally allied with Germany.
In the First World War, German plans to capture Paris in the autumn of 1914 failed. The war on the Western Front became a stalemate; the Allied naval blockade caused severe shortages of food. However, Imperial Germany had success on the Eastern Front; the German declaration of unrestricted submarine warfare in early 1917, contributed to bringing the United States into the war. The high command under Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff controlled the country, but in October after the failed offensive in spring 1918, the German armies were in retreat, allies Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire had collapsed, Bulgaria had surrendered; the Empire collapsed in the November 1918 Revolution with the abdications of its monarchs. This left a postwar federal republic and a devastated and unsatisfied populace, which led to the rise of Adolf Hitler and Nazism; the German Confederation had been created by an act of the Congress of Vienna on 8 June 1815 as a result of the Napoleonic Wars, after being alluded to in Article 6 of the 1814 Treaty of Paris.
German nationalism shifted from its liberal and democratic character in 1848, called Pan-Germanism, to Prussian prime minister Otto von Bismarck's pragmatic Realpolitik. Bismarck sought to extend Hohenzollern hegemony throughout the German states, he envisioned a Prussian-dominated Germany. Three wars led to military successes and helped to persuade German people to do this: the Second Schleswig War against Denmark in 1864, the Austro-Prussian War in 1866, the Franco-Prussian War against France in 1870–71; the German Confederation ended as a result of the Austro-Prussian War of 1866 between the constituent Confederation entities of the Austrian Empire and its allies on one side and the Kingdom of Prussia and its allies on the other. The war resulted in the partial replacement of the Confederation in 1867 by a North German Confederation, comprising the 22 states north of the Main; the patriotic fervour generated by the Franco-Prussian War overwhelmed the remaining opposition to a unified Germany in the four stat