Kleemann, Ulrich, born 23-03-1892 in Langensalza, joined the Army service, age 19, on 23-10-1911 as a Fahnenjunker in the Bavarian Dragoner-Regiment 21 . He is in the fields with this Regiment and soon wounded in hospital on 26-05-1915 and ends the war as an Adjutant. He was allowed in the new Reichswehr Cavalry Regiment after the war. On 01-01-1938 he was the commander of the 3rd Schützen Regiment. Promoted to Oberst on 01-10-1938 and from 04-09-1939 in the fields of World War II as commander of the 3rd Schützen Brigade. He received the Knight’s Cross of the Iron Cross on 13-10-1941 and is involved in heavy battles with Forces in the south of Smolensk. Generalmajor from 01-11-1941 and in the Führer Reserve (see Adolf Hitler) (did you know) of the OKH until 10-04-1942. He then is appointed to commander of the 90th Light Africa Division , former commander Generalmajor der Infanterie, Richard Veith until 28-04-1942, later succeeded by Oberst Werner Marcks
on 18-06-1942. Marcks died age 71, on 27-07-1967, age 71 and Richard Veith died age 88 in 1978. Generalfeldmarschall, Erwin Rommel was High Commander of the Africa Corps
. . During the Dodecanese Campaign, Kleemann commanded the 7,500-strong Sturm-Division “Rhodos” which received elements of 22. Infanterie-Division under command of Oberstleutnant Hans-Joachim Liesong, during the attack on the Italian garrison of Rhodes. Kleeman defeated the Italians within two days, before British reinforcements could arrive in Rhodes. In September 1943, barely two weeks after the Italian surrender, British forces landed on Samos, Leros, and Kos. Kleemann counterattacked and within two months overran the three British garrisons. From 28-05-1943 he was commander of the and promoted to Generalleutnant on 10-06-1943. After the retreat of Italy of the WWII battlegrounds, he was ordered to disarm the Italian Forces in the Area of the Mediterranean Sea and awarded with the Oak Leaves . In June 1944, two SS officers arrived by plane in Rhodes to hold discussions with Kleemann about the (Ladino speaking) Jews of Rhodes. On July 13, Kleemann issued an order ordering the Jewish population of Rhodes to gather in the city of Rhodes and the towns of Trianda, Cremasto, and Villanova by noon on July 17. On July 16 Kleemann was forced to issue another order stating that the Jewish question on Rhodes had apparently given rise to “doubts” and barring further questioning of orders by the troops. 1,700 members of the ancient Jewish community of Rhodes, out of a population of about 2,000, were rounded up and transported to mainland Europe. Only some 160 of them survived the camps. Out of 6,000 Ladino-speaking Jews in the Dodecanese as a whole, some 1,200 survived by escaping to the nearby coast of Turkey. A memorial in the old Jewish quarter dedicated to the Jews of Rhodes who were deported during World War II by the Nazis.
Kleemann was assigned as Commanding General of the LXXXXI Army corps, under Generalfeldmarschall der Kavallerie, Maximillian von Weichs and landed again in the Führer Reserve from October 1944. In the same month he was promoted to General of the Panzertruppen and Commanding General of the IV Panzer Corps. The Panzer Corps was renamed in “Feldherrnhalle” on under command of Generalmajor Friedrich Carl von Steinkeller , 28-11-1944. Steinkeller surrendered to the Red Army forces in the course of the Soviet Mogiley Offensive in June 1944; he was released in 1955 and died, age 85, on 19-10-1981 Hanover..
On 22-12-1944 Kleemann was commander of the 8th Army and landed in Allied captivity at the end of the war. The 8th Army was activated on 01-08-1939 with Generaloberst der Infanterie, Johannes Blaskowitz
in command. First seeing service in Poland participated in heavy fights during Battle of Bzura, the army was later reorganised into the 2nd for the invasion of France, before later being reactivated as being part of the Ostfront in Russia. The army was involved in the defence of Hungary and Austria before finally surrendering and being destroyed .
Death and burial ground of Kleemann, Ulrich.
Released in 1947, Ulrich Kleemann retired in Oberursel, Taunus, where he at the age of 70 died, on 03-01-1963. He is buried, with his wife Gerda, who died age 78 in 1978, on the Stadtfriedhof of Oberursel.