Was Erwin Rommel a good guy?
What I mean is I heard he refused to execute Jewish soldiers and commandos and was involved in the Hitler assassination plot. But was he a good person? Did he do mass executions?
Erwin Rommel was misunderstood.
You have to remember, the Wehrmacht is simply Germany's traditional military. So when Hitler became Fuhrer of Germany, the Wehrmacht was under his control.
It was the SS that committed many atrocities
The Wehrmacht was not entirely happy they were controlled by Hitler. First off, Hitler had to approve all military plans that the generals devised, and since Hitler wasn't a military officer, his decisions were poor. They say Hitler was the one who Defeated Germany himself because he was a terrible tactician.
Erwin Rommel was a Wehrmacht commander. When Hitler heard that his Fascist Italian Allies were being defeated by the British in North Africa he put Rommel in Charge of the Afrikakorps (a corps of Wehrmacht soldiers and armor to cut off British aide.)
But although Rommel was one of the best Field Marshall's World War 2 had seen (US General Patton even admitted it) he was defeated when the Allies copied his tactics.
After this Rommel participated in Battles around and in Italy to help stop the ever advancing Allies from Reaching Southern Germany and France though Italy. (Note: The Allies captured Rome but German forces held Northern Italy till the end of the war.)
In France Hitler assigned Rommel to build defenses along the Coast of France called the Atlantic Wall. These obstacles would soon be encountered in D-Day.
Rommel's Forces saw action in Normandy later on.
Rommel was rumored to have been in the July 20 plot. When Hitler found out he gave him an ultimatum: Rommel was to commit suicide or have his family also executed. Being an honorable officer, Rommel killed himself using a cyanide capsule.
Was Rommel an Honorable officer? Yes. I admire his bravery and military skill.
Did Rommel Commit war crimes? No. He respected POWs and civilians alike.
Was Rommel a good person? He followed orders and did his duty.
Depends on how you look at the situation. For the Allied powers, Rommel is a bad guy because he is helping the Nazis gain power. In a way he killed many people through warfare, which is my definition of mass executions.
Rommel spent most of his time during the war in North Africa away from Jewish people, and later in France where he had a job of organising defences against an invasion. The real attrociaties happened on the Eastern Front, since many Jews lived in Eastern Europe.
So far as I can find out even if Rommel was part of the German army, Rommel is anything but a Nazi. In fact, early on he starts to have "serious reservations" about the Nazi regime. The info I've read seems like he was a good guy!
Check out this link
Rommel was as good a guy as most military leaders. He was not really involved in the plot to kill Hitler, but unfortunately for him his name came up in a list that the plotters had, so he, as a war hero, was offered the option of arranging an 'accident' with his pistol so that he would die, rather than being put on trial, humiliated and put to death painfully.
We can discuss very long about the political motives of wars, but those concern politicians.
As a soldier Rommel was known to try to preserve "humanity", which is an odd word in a war, however Rommel behaved correctly.
Ignoring to sort out jewish POWs is one true story. Others are that he sent his adjutant as "navigator" to the British lines guiding a British ambulance which had been driven into a German fortified tank position. He didn't insist on shooting them when a British patrol was met in the middle of he desert. There is also a known speech from Rommel to his soldiers in which he said that hate has no place in warfare.
In the general "vilification" of all Wehrmacht soldiers and in particular in the attempt to destroy the Rommel legend it can be seen how important that motto is until present.
Field Marshal Rommel was a good guy in that he was a professional soldier and he acted like an officer and a gentleman. He was a highly decorated officer during World War 1 and our own Field Marshal Montgomery (World War 2) comments about him were always very good, although he was fighting against him in Africa.
The fact that he was an officer and gentleman would have annoyed the Nazis as he did not believe in everything that they did. He was involved in the plot to kill Hitler, the plot failed, Rommel was given the choice of going quietly which meant committing suicide and his family would be saved. If Rommel had refused then his family could have been sent to concentration camps or killed. Even to the end he was a gentleman and kept his family safe.
I suppose as a Brit I would have to say that he was a bad guy because he was on the side of the Germans, but I cannot think bad of the man at all.
Rommel is romanticized and his skills as a general are overrated ie. he was certainly competent, but he was not the genius fox that certain 'journalists' would have the world believe. He was also not 'antifascist' inasmuch a whiney old goon from an aritocratic family who recognized waaaay too late the 'excessive' evils of mass murdering civilians and prisoners for the nazi cause.
He was not a man concerned about the welfare of humanity inasmuch his own career and properity in the face of a losing war. He was like most men - neither good or bad, but a mixture. To have taken him to a concentration camp and have him paraded before the victims of his atrocious government would be too good for him.... He should have been taken out and hung like the mass murdering coward of a man he was born to be.
He knew about the camps, the mass executions, and he used slave labour. In fact, he was concerned about its repercutions should Germany lose the war. He was by no means a good man trying to save people from the camps or mass executions; he was just an old careerist aritocrat worried about having to pay for the consequences of losing a war....