Heinz GuderianHeinz Wilhelm Guderian (; 17 June 1888 – 14 May 1954) was a German general during World War II who, after the war, became a successful memoirist. An early pioneer and advocate of the "blitzkrieg" approach, he played a central role in the development of the panzer division concept. In 1936, he became the Inspector of Motorized Troops.
At the beginning of the Second World War, Guderian led an armoured corps in the Invasion of Poland. During the Invasion of France, he commanded the armoured units that attacked through the Ardennes forest and overwhelmed the Allied defenses at the Battle of Sedan. He led the 2nd Panzer Army during Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of the Soviet Union. The campaign ended in failure after the German offensive Operation Typhoon failed to capture Moscow, after which Guderian was dismissed.
In early 1943, Adolf Hitler appointed Guderian to the newly created position of Inspector General of Armoured Troops. In this role, he had broad responsibility to rebuild and train new panzer forces but saw limited success due to Germany's worsening war economy. Guderian was appointed Acting Chief of the General Staff of the Army High Command, immediately following the 20 July Plot to assassinate Hitler.
Guderian was placed in charge of the "Court of Honour" by Hitler, which in the aftermath of the plot was used to dismiss people from the military so they could be tried in the "People's Court" and executed. He was Hitler's personal advisor on the Eastern Front and became closely associated with the Nazis. Guderian's troops carried out the criminal Commissar Order during Barbarossa, and he was implicated in the commission of reprisals after the Warsaw Uprising of 1944.
Guderian surrendered to the United States forces on 10 May 1945 and was interned until 1948. He was released without charge and retired to write his memoirs. Entitled ''Panzer Leader'', the autobiography became a bestseller, widely read to this day. Guderian's writings promoted several post-war myths, including that of the "clean Wehrmacht". In his autobiography, Guderian portrayed himself as the sole originator of the German panzer force; he omitted any mentions of crimes that he authorised or condoned. Guderian died in 1954 and was buried in Goslar. Provided by Wikipedia
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