I spent quite a bit of time digging into the issues between General Von Manstein and Hitler. I was also looking into claims that Von Manstein wasn’t as good a general as people thought.
On the latter, those thoughts are now completely gone. Von Manstein was good, and I studied additional things he had done. I had read most (but not all) of his memoirs. And the things I was pleased to even observe what Germans themselves had to say about Manstein, including his own ADC (Aide de camp). There is no question that Manstein did a magnificient piece of work.
His greatest achievement, with Hitler’s permission, was how he saved the Wehrmacht from the collapse of its southern wing in 1943.
I was happy to see that others, even Germans who were with him, under his command, that indeed, his memoirs are exactly correct. Everything he said in there, was borne out by his actions in real life.
The only area of disagreement is whether Hitler actually gave the order for Von Paulus to break out. That’s the only area where I may have to refresh my memory of his memoirs.
I did some digging months ago on why Hitler fired Von Manstein.
Now, additional info has made me satisfied that I think I understand what was going on between the two and I will discuss it later.
I am happy that I now grasp Manstein’s greatest achievements properly, and it is in fact a further proof of the way he viewed warfare, and why he disagreed with Hitler. I also think I understand why Hitler issued his "fight to the last man, last round" orders.
Also, I found additional information that confirms Von Manstein’s attitude toward the 6th Army in Stalingrad. Stalingrad was NOT the massive failure they try to portray it as. Stalingrad, was actually quite an amazing piece of German work, and it helped the Germans. The only sad part is that Manstein was DETERMINED TO SAVE 6TH ARMY … and if he had the right support it could have been done. It was partly done.
I think that even Hitler may have learned a few things from Manstein. This is clear from some German actions in the final part of the war, when Manstein was no longer working for Hitler.
All of these things continue to add to my view that if Manstein had been given more power, that he would have done his utmost for Germany and for Hitler.
It is to Manstein’s credit, that he rebuked all attempts to join conspiracies against Hitler, and right to the end of the war, he tried on several occasions to see Hitler. He was loyal to Hitler to the very end. And that, to me is an excellent sign of his character. He never turned against Hitler – ever. He had carried out his duty.