Manteuffel, Hasso Erich von

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Manteuffel, Hasso Erich von, born, on 14-01-1897, in Potsdam, to a respected Prussian aristocratic family . In 1908, he became a cadet in a military school . He joined the Imperial German Army on 22-02-1916 as an officer in a Hussar Regiment. His World War I service on the Western Front. He was wounded on 12 October fighting in France. He entered the Freikorps in January 1919. After the establishment of the Weimar Republic, he joined the newly created Reichswehr. (see Adolf Hitler) (did you know). On 15-10-1935 he was appointed commander of the 2nd Motorcycle Rifle Battalion  of Heinz Guderian’s 2nd Panzer Division (see Guderian)  . On 01-02- 1939 he became a senior professor at Panzer Troop School II in Berlin-Krampnitz. He remained there until 1941, thus missing out on the campaigns in Poland and France. On 01-05-1941, von Manteuffel was appointed commander of the 1st Battalion, 7th Rifle Regiment of the 7th Panzer Division . With this unit, he served under SS  Generaloberst, Hermann Hoth’s  Panzer Group 3 of the Army Group Centre in Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union. On 25-08-1941, he took over the 6th Rifle Regiment of the 7th Panzer Division after its commander was killed in action.  In May 1942, after having engaged in heavy fighting around Moscow in the winter of 1941–1942, the 7th Panzer Division was transferred to France for refitting.  On 15-07-1942, while the division was still in France, von Manteuffel was made the commander of the 7th Panzer Grenadier Brigade of the 7th Panzer Division. In early 1943, von Manteuffel was sent to Africa, where on 5 February he became the commander of the Division, von Broichn /von Manteuffel, serving in Generaloberst der Panzertruppe, Hans Jürgen von Arnim‘s  5th Panzer Army of  Army Group Africa under Erwin Rommel  . Here von Manteuffel took part in defensive operations during the Battle of Tunisia, conducting a series of successful counteroffensives that tied down Allied forces. In the midst of heavy fighting, he collapsed from exhaustion on March 31, and was evacuated back to Germany. On 01-05-1943, von Manteuffel here with General Horst Niemack  and Willy Langkeit  was promoted to the rank of Generalmajor for his exploits in Africa. After recuperating, von Manteuffel was made the commander of the 7th Panzer Division on 22-08-1943 and was once again on the Eastern Front, which had by then collapsed following the Battle of Kursk

  and the resulting Soviet counteroffensive. Despite being wounded  in the back in a Soviet air attack on 26-08-1943 he stayed on, battling in Ukraine. After ferocious fighting at Kharkov, Belgorod, and along the Dnieper River, he succeeded in bringing the Red Army offensive to a halt. He was awarded with the Oak Leaves on 23-11-1943.   In late November, he managed to recapture Zhitomir.On 01-09-1944, von Manteuffel was promoted to General of Panzer Troops and given command of the Fifth Panzer Army, fighting on the Western Front. After engaging in heavy combat in Lorraine against George Smith Patton Third Army

  the unit was withdrawn to reserve and began refitting for the upcoming Ardennes Offensive, and this penetration included the Battle of Bastogne. On 10-03-1945 von Manteuffel was made the commander of the Third Panzer Army  on the Eastern Front. But von Manteuffel was faced with an overwhelming attack launched by General Konstantin Rokossovski ‘s  2nd Belorussian Front  during the Battle of Berlin. At one point in the battle, Soviet troops entered his headquarters, and killed four of his staff, wounding an equal number. Before they could kill the others, von Manteuffel himself shot one, and brought down the other with his trench knife. On 03-05-1945 von Manteuffel surrendered his troops to the Western Allies and thus escaped capture by the Soviets. 

Death and burial ground Manteuffel, Hasso Erich von.

  Manteuffel was held in an Allied POW camp until September 1947.

After his release in 1947, he entered politics and was a representative of the Free Democratic Party of Germany (FDP)  in the German Bundestag from 1953 to 1957. In 1957 he joined the German Party. In the early 1950s Manteuffel advised on the redevelopment of the Bundeswehr.

Manteuffel was charged in 1959 for having a deserter shot in 1944. He was convicted and sentenced to two years in prison. In July 1960, he took the punishment in Landsberg am Lech, but was released after two months. He left the legacy of being the 24th of only 27 holders of the Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds.  His ability to leverage the speed of German tanks set a new standard in the doctrines of modern mobile warfare. In 1968 he lectured at the United States Military Academy at West Point, speaking about combat in deep snow conditions and worked as a technical adviser on war films. In the U.S he visited the US navy and met his opponent from the war General Omar Bradley

  

Hasso Erich von Manteuffel lived in Diessen am Ammersee and had still contact with his fellows veterans, Erich von Manstein and Horst Niemack.

and died on vacation in Reith im Alpbachtal, Tyrol, Austria, at the age of 81, on 24-09-1978 . Von Manteuffel here with Franz von Papen  and US president Ike Eisenhower  is buried with his wife Armgard, who died at the very old age of 98, on 07-03-2001, on the village cemetery of Diessen. Close by the grave of Generalarzt  der Wehrmacht, Heino Maurach.

 

Cemetery and grave location of Manteuffel, Hasso Erich von.

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