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|Born||2 August 1904
|Died||4 July 1980
|Buried at||Munich Waldfriedhof
Plot 460—Row 3—Grave 246
|Allegiance|| Weimar Republic (to 1933)
|Years of service||1923–45|
|Battles/wars||World War II|
|Awards||Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross|
|Relations||Nikolaus von Falkenhorst (father in law)|
Erich Dethleffsen (2 August 1904 – 4 July 1980) was a German general from Kiel. He was married to a daughter of Nikolaus von Falkenhorst, who planned the German invasion of Norway and Denmark during World War II.
Dethleffsen joined the Reichswehr in 1923, and was promoted to the German General Staff in 1937. He fought as a Captain in the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front in World War II. Dethleffsen was wounded, and awarded with the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross for his service. After his injury, he rose to the rank of Generalmajor, and served on the army General Staff in Adolf Hitler's headquarters. Dethleffsen was arrested on 23 May 1945, and was held until March 1948 in an American Prisoner of War Camp. He was originally held in Luxembourg with Hermann Göring, Joachim von Ribbentrop, and others.
On his release, Dethleffsen became executive secretary of the Wirtschaftspolitische Gesellschaft von 1947 (Society of 1947 for Economic Policy.) The society was used to spread pro-Western feeling in West Germany.
Dethleffsen is known to have attended several meetings of the Bilderberg Group.
He was the author of Das Wagnis der Freiheit (Tactical Mobility of Carriages) (1952); Soldatische Existenz morgen (1953); Der Artillerie gewidmet (1975); and Robert Martinek: General der Artillerie, Lebensbild eines Soldaten (1975).
Dethleffsen died in Munich on 4 July 1980.
Decorations and awards
- Iron Cross of 1939, 1st and 2nd class
- German Cross in Gold (1 May 1942)
- Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross on 23 December 1943 as Oberst im Generalstab and chief of the Generalstab of the XXXIX. Panzerkorps
- Scherzer 2007, p. 270.
- Fellgiebel 2000, p. 159.
- Fellgiebel, Walther-Peer (2000) . Die Träger des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939–1945 — Die Inhaber der höchsten Auszeichnung des Zweiten Weltkrieges aller Wehrmachtteile [The Bearers of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939–1945 — The Owners of the Highest Award of the Second World War of all Wehrmacht Branches] (in German). Friedberg, Germany: Podzun-Pallas. ISBN 978-3-7909-0284-6.
- Patzwall, Klaus D.; Scherzer, Veit (2001). Das Deutsche Kreuz 1941 – 1945 Geschichte und Inhaber Band II [The German Cross 1941 – 1945 History and Recipients Volume 2] (in German). Norderstedt, Germany: Verlag Klaus D. Patzwall. ISBN 978-3-931533-45-8.
- Scherzer, Veit (2007). Die Ritterkreuzträger 1939–1945 Die Inhaber des Ritterkreuzes des Eisernen Kreuzes 1939 von Heer, Luftwaffe, Kriegsmarine, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm sowie mit Deutschland verbündeter Streitkräfte nach den Unterlagen des Bundesarchives [The Knight's Cross Bearers 1939–1945 The Holders of the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross 1939 by Army, Air Force, Navy, Waffen-SS, Volkssturm and Allied Forces with Germany According to the Documents of the Federal Archives] (in German). Jena, Germany: Scherzers Miltaer-Verlag. ISBN 978-3-938845-17-2.
- Searle, Alaric (2003). Wehrmacht Generals, West German Society, and the Debate on Rearmament, 1949–1959. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers. ISBN 978-0-275-97968-3.