Quotations by Rommel, Erwin


The commander must try, above all, to establish personal and comradely contact with his men, but without giving away an inch of his authority.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
(1944), The Rommel Papers, ch. 23 (ed. B. H. Liddell Hart) (1953)
Added on 18-Sep-09 | Last updated 18-Sep-09
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It is always a bad sign in an army when scapegoats are habitually sought out and brought to sacrifice for every conceivable mistake. It usually shows something very wrong in the highest command. It completely inhibits the willingness of junior commanders to make decisions, for they will always try to get chapter and verse for everything they do.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
(Dec. 1942), The Rommel Papers, 18 (ed. B. H. Liddell Hart) (1953)
Added on 16-Oct-09 | Last updated 16-Oct-09
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In a man-to-man fight, the winner is he who has one more round in his magazine.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
Infanterie greift an (1937) [tr. Attacks, ed. L. Allen (1979)]
Added on 30-Oct-09 | Last updated 30-Oct-09
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Always in a moment of extreme danger things can be done which had previously been thought impossible. Mortal danger is an effective antidote for fixed ideas.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
The Rommel Papers, ch. 11 [ed. B. H. Liddell Hart, (1953)]
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Added on 1-Aug-17 | Last updated 1-Aug-17
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Always be tactful and well-mannered and teach your subordinates to be the same. Avoid excessive sharpness or harshness of voice, which usually indicates the man who has shortcomings of his own to hide.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
Lecture to class of cadets (1938)

In B. H. Liddell Hart, ed., The Rommel Papers, ch. 10 (footnote) (1953)
Added on 9-Oct-09 | Last updated 9-Oct-09
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Courage which goes against military expediency is stupidity, or, if it is insisted upon by a commander, irresponsibility.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
Letter (9 Nov 1942)

Quoted in B. H. Liddell Hart (ed), The Rommel Papers (1982)
Added on 23-Oct-09 | Last updated 23-Oct-09
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One must never make a show of false emotions to one’s men. The ordinary soldier has a surprisingly good nose for what is true and what false.

Erwin Rommel (1891-1944) German field marshal
Letter (Jun 1942), The Rommel Papers, ch. 9 [ed. B. H. Liddell Hart, (1953)]
Added on 6-Nov-09 | Last updated 6-Nov-09
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