Blomberg, Field Marshal Werner von, 1878-1943

As War Minister in HITLER’s first cabinet. Blomberg quickly abandoned the role of watchdog which President Hindenburg had intended he should play and became a devotee of Germany’s new leader. In return he was promoted to become the first Field Marshal of the new regime in 1936. In February 1938, however, he was forced from office, an unwise second marriage he had just made having provided Hitler with the pretext he needed to humiliate the high command of the army, shave its self-confidence and allow him to replace its leaders with soldiers completely subservient to himself. The ‘Rubber Lion’ as Blomberg was known—an apt comment on the divergence between his martial appearance and fiberless character—went quietly, consigning the once fiercely independent German Army to Nazi hegemony.

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