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File:Condor_Legion.jpg
Flag of the Condor Legion

The Legion Condor was the name given to the intervention force that mostly air Nazi Germany sent to assist General Franco in Spanish Civil War.

CommandersEdit

Commander Date
Generalmajor Hugo Sperrle November 1, 1936 - October 31, 1937
Generalmajor Helmuth Volkmann November 1, 1937 - October 31, 1938
Generalmajor Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen November 1, 1938 - July 18, 1939

Chief of StaffEdit

Major Alexander Holle November 1, 1936 -? January 1937
Oberstleutnant Wolfram Freiherr von Richthofen ? January 1937 - January 11, 1938
Major Hermann Plocher January 11, 1938 - November 1, 1938
Oberstleutnant Hans Seidemann November 1, 1938 - July 18, 1939

HistoryEdit

Adolf Hitler at the suggestion of the Head of Luftwaffe Hermann Göring secretly offered to Franco air support and his army. The main objective was to test the German Air Force in a conventional war

This support consisted of both logistic support, troop transport, groceries, etc.. as in actions in support of attack by fighter planes and bombers (like the famous bombardment in Guernica), tanks and artillery.

The German intervention in Spanish Civil War improved the quality of their war equipment and repair the defects of its air force, preparing the world for the onslaught that Hitler planned.

On November 11, 1936 the first 697 men arrived at the Legion Condor Seville. Adolf Hitler supplied the Spanish Nationalists with men and weapons, but this was a new and special group: the head of German intelligence, Wilhelm Canaris, Had agreed with General Franco that the quota would be mostly air. Present in almost all fronts, the dreaded Legion Condor came to meet 5000 airmen, hundreds of soldiers, units of tanks, armored vehicles, artillery and motorized infantry elite.

In April 1937, air strikes were multiplying ever more deadly and the Legion had already experienced in Oviedo the Carpet Bombing method. After his mission, in May 1939, days after (June 6) the Condor Legion was honored at Berlin: 15.000 German soldiers marched from Spain to great acclaim. Months later, WWII broke out, and the men were specially prepared for her.

CompositionEdit

  • Commanding officer: Generalmajor Hugo Sperrle
  • S/88: General staff

Air units (136 aircraft overall):

  • Jagdgruppe 88: Fighter group with four squadrons of Heinkel He-51 (48 aircraft)
  • K/88: Bomber group with four squadrons of Junkers Ju-52 (48 aircraft)
  • A/88: Reconnaissance group with four squadrons:
    • Three long range reconnaissance squadrons with Heinkel He-70 (18 aircraft)
    • One short range reconnaissance squadron with Heinkel He-45 (6 aircraft)
  • AS/88: Naval reconnaissance group with two squadrons:
  • LN/88: Aerial information battalion with two companies
  • F/88: Anti-air battalion with six batteries:
    • Four 88 mm Flak batteries ( 16 pieces )
    • Two 20 mm Flak ( 20 pieces )
  • P/88: Two Luftwaffe maintenance companies

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  • Axis History. Legion Condor. Retrieved on July 12, 2009 .
  • A tragedy planned - By Rémi Kauffer, Living History, No. 46

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