High Command Of The Armed Forces.   21st January, 1945.

(Operations Staff).

                I order as follows:

                1. Commanders In Chief, Commanding Generals, and Divisional Commanders are personally responsible to me for reporting in good time:

  • (a) Every decision to carry out an operational movement.
  • (b) Every attack planned in divisional strength and upwards which does not conform with the general Directives laid down by the High Command.
  • (c) Every offensive action in quiet sectors of the Front, over and above normal shocktroop activities, which is calculated to draw the enemy's attention to the sector.
  • (d) Every plan for disengaging or withdrawing forces.
  • (e) Every plan for surrendering a position, a local strongpoint, or a fortress.
                They must ensure that I have time to intervene in this decision if I think fit, and that my counterorders can reach the frontline troops in time.

                2. Commanders In Chief, Commanding Generals, and Divisional Commanders, the Chiefs Of The General Staffs, and each individual Officer Of The General Staff, or Officers employed on General Staffs, are responsible to me that every report made to me either directly, or through the normal channels, should contain nothing but the unvarnished truth. In future, I shall impose draconian punishment on any attempt at concealment, whether deliberate or arising from carelessness or oversight.

                3. I must point out that the maintenance of signals communications, particularly in heavy fighting and critical situations, is a prerequisite for the conduct of the battle. All Officers commanding troops are responsible to me for ensuring that these communications both to higher Headquarters, and to subordinate Commanders, are not broken, and for seeing that, by exhausting every means and engaging themselves personally, permanent communications in every case are ensured with the Commanders above and below.

Adolf Hitler.