Karl-Heinz Lüdtke autobiografy part 1


 When you read in German magazines or listen to the radio and especially on German television there are only bad things about the German soldiers in the war between 1939 and 1945. If you were just soldier or anything else doesn't matter to them, but the mass of the soldiers were not in favor of the war!
When you were a soldier or had to be a soldier, you had to take care of your comrades. Those are the rules of a soldier whatever happenes.
Now when everything about the German soldier is being told its hard, almost unbareble. A lot of bad things have happened, about that nobody argues, but most of the German soldiers have always respected their foes and the people of the occupied countries. How else would you explain the story of out crashlanding in occupied territory I am going to tell you. I have seen a lot of the world during my war years and I have never hear or noticed anything out of the ordinary. I was in the Czechoslovakia, Poland, France, Italy, Afrika and Greece. You cannot be so blind as not to have noticed, but something else: I was stationed on Crete for two years and have visited my old base from 1943/44 to relive the events. Only the Do-24 flyingboat was not there, the rest was kept in tact. On the spot where the Do-24 used to ly I saw an old man in his fishingboat and made conversation with him. He knew a little German. He was very praising about his employer, one Ufz. Fritz, that even now (1992) still visits him in Suda (on Crete).
When I arrived in Chania, the former capitol, and looked around I was astound to see, in the middle of Chania, the monument that the German paratroopers erected in 1941 to commemorate their fallen comrades. It was still there in a complete and clean condition. Especially worth mentioning is the war cemetery of Maleme (in the vicinity of Chania). Such a well kept war cemetery you find nowhere. My thanks to the German war cemetery service in Kassel!

The most important of all, the monument, the graves, nothing was soiled or detiriorating like so many monuments and war graves in Germany.

To sum it all up: The German soldier could not have been that bad. Otherwise many German soldiers would not have been invited to stay in former occupied countries.

When you read or hear stories about the former German soldiers from 1939-1945,  you should listen and look, but also be very critical about the content!

continue to part 2