Erich Ludendorff

Erich Ludendorff

A German general, in 1923 he led, together with Adolf HITLER, the fascist putsch in Munich.
Date of Birth: 09.04.1865
Country: Germany

  1. Biography of Erich Ludendorff
  2. Early Military Career
  3. World War I
  4. Later Life and Political Activities

Biography of Erich Ludendorff

Erich Ludendorff was a German general who played a significant role in German military history. He was born on April 9, 1865, in Kruszewnia, Prussia. Ludendorff was the son of a landed proprietor and a reserve officer. He received his education at the Royal Cadet Corps in Berlin-Lichterfelde in 1882 and later attended the Military Academy in 1892. As part of his military training, Ludendorff was sent to Russia for six months in 1894 to improve his knowledge of the Russian language.

Early Military Career

In 1906, Ludendorff became a professor of tactics and military history at the Military Academy. He later served as the Chief of Staff of General von Hindenburg in 1914, following the German army's failures in East Prussia. Ludendorff's first taste of combat came during the Battle of Liège, where he took command of a brigade after the death of General von Wußow. He displayed remarkable leadership and bravery during the battle, leading his brigade to victory. In recognition of his achievements, Ludendorff was awarded the Pour le Merite order by Emperor Wilhelm II on August 22, 1914.

World War I

After his success at Liège, Ludendorff continued to rise through the ranks and became the Chief of Staff of the 8th Army in East Prussia in 1914. This marked the beginning of Ludendorff's close collaboration with General Paul von Hindenburg. Together, they conducted successful military campaigns on the Eastern Front, despite facing a superior Russian army. Ludendorff was appointed as the Chief of Staff of the 9th Army in September 1914 and eventually became the Commander-in-Chief on the Eastern Front on October 1, 1914.

Ludendorff and Hindenburg's military strategy focused on flanking and attacking the enemy's flanks and rear. However, their tactics faced challenges on the Western Front due to the nature of trench warfare. Ludendorff's attempts to break through enemy lines were often unsuccessful. Despite his tactical brilliance and organizational skills, Ludendorff lacked political acumen and flexibility, which hindered his ability to negotiate a compromise or peace throughout the war.

Later Life and Political Activities

After World War I, Ludendorff went into political activism and became a prominent figure in right-wing nationalist movements. In 1923, he joined forces with Adolf Hitler in the failed Beer Hall Putsch in Munich. Following the failed coup, Ludendorff was charged and tried alongside Hitler. However, he distanced himself from Hitler and the Nazi Party after their rise to power in 1933.

Ludendorff authored several books, including his memoirs, "My War Memories 1914-1918," in which he expressed his views on the war and military strategy. He also wrote a book called "Total War" in 1935, outlining his ideas on warfare. Ludendorff's contributions to military history and his involvement in German politics have made him a controversial figure in history.