Georg von Küchler

Georg von Küchler

Infobox Military Person
name=Georg von Küchler
lived=birth date|1881|5|30|df=ydeath date and age|1968|5|25|1881|5|30|df=y
placeofbirth=Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Germany
placeofdeath= Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany


caption=Georg von Küchler
allegiance=flagicon|German Empire German Empire (1910 - 1918)
flagicon|Germany Weimar Republic (to 1933)
flagicon|Nazi Germany Nazi Germany
serviceyears=10 January 1910 [ [http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/Personenregister/K/KuechlerGv.htm Lexikon der Wehrmacht ] ] - 1944
rank=Field Marshal
commands=Army Group North (January 17, 1942)
Army Group North (January 1944)
unit=
battles=World War II: Battle of the Netherlands, Battle of France, Siege of Leningrad
awards=Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with oak leaves
laterwork=

Georg Karl Friedrich Wilhelm von Küchler (May 30 1881 – May 25 1968) was a German field marshal during World War II.

Born in Philippsruhe castle near Hanau, Küchler led the German Eighteenth Army in 1940 in the invasion of neutral Netherlands, was able to defeat the Dutch army and continued on into Belgium. Küchler's army defeated the Belgians, took Antwerp and then moved into France. The 18th Army ended this phase of the war at Pas de Calais encircling Dunkirk. His role in this campaign earned him the rank of colonel-general.

Küchler became commander of Army Group North after Field Marshal Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb was relieved of his command. Von Küchler, unlike his predecessor Leeb, was seen as politically compliant and was liked by Adolf Hitler, who hoped that von Küchler would succeed where he believed von Leeb had failed.

Küchler commanded Army Group North from December 1941 through January 1944 but was unable to achieve any victory at Leningrad. He maintained the siege of Leningrad, launching massive bombardments in an attempt to intimidate the Soviet Red Army into surrender. On June 30 1942 Hitler promoted Küchler to field marshal (Generalfeldmarschall). In January 1944 Soviet troops were able to break the blockade of Leningrad, and Küchler was sacked when he demanded the withdrawal necessary to save Army Group North.

At the end of World War II Küchler was arrested by American occupation authorities and tried by a military court in 1948 in the High Command Trial. Küchler was sentenced to twenty years in prison for crimes against humanity but only served eight before he was released in 1953 due to illness and old age. He died in Garmisch-Partenkirchen in 1968.

References


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