47+ Best Erwin Rommel Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Johannes Erwin Eugen Rommel, popularly known as the Desert Fox, was a German general and military theorist. Profoundly inspirational Erwin Rommel quotes will challenge the way you think, and help guide you through any life experience.

Famous Erwin Rommel Quotes

In a man-to-man fight, the winner is he who has one more round in his magazine. – Erwin Rommel

Don’t fight a battle if you don’t gain anything by winning. – Erwin Rommel

Men are basically smart or dumb and lazy or ambitious. The dumb and ambitious ones are dangerous, and I get rid of them. The dumb and lazy ones I give mundane duties. The smart ambitious ones I put on my staff. The smart and lazy ones I make my commanders. – Erwin Rommel

If I had to take hell, I would use the Australians to take it and the New Zealanders to hold it. – Erwin Rommel

Messages can’t be intercepted if they aren’t sent, can they? – Erwin Rommel

One must not judge everyone in the world by his qualities as a soldier: otherwise we should have no civilization. – Erwin Rommel

Which would your men rather be, tired, or dead? – Erwin Rommel

The peril of the hour moved the British to tremendous exertions, just as always in a moment of extreme danger things can be done which had previously been thought impossible. Mortal danger is an effective antidote for fixed ideas. – Erwin Rommel

Mortal danger is an effective antidote for fixed ideas. – Erwin Rommel

The commander must establish personal and comradely contact with his men, but without giving away one inch of authority. – Erwin Rommel

Manstein is a man of illusions. … He believes Hitler will listen to facts. – Erwin Rommel

Anyone who has to fight, even with the most modern weapons, against an enemy in complete command of the air, fights like a savage against modern European troops, under the same handicaps and with the same chances of success. – Erwin Rommel

There are always times where the place of a commander isn’t back with his Major State, but onward with his troops. – Erwin Rommel

The future battle on the ground will be preceded by battle in the air. This will determine which of the contestants has to suffer operational and tactical disadvantages and be forced throughout the battle into adoption compromise solutions. – Erwin Rommel

But courage which goes against military expediency is stupidity, or, if it is insisted upon by a commander, irresponsibility. – Erwin Rommel

The organization of supplies, the command of men, anything in any way constructive requires more than intellect; it requires energy and drive and an unrelenting will to serve the cause, regardless of one’s personal interests. – Erwin Rommel

He [Hitler] seemed very depressed and upset about the Stalingrad disaster. He said that one is always liable to look on the black side of things after a defeat, a tendency which can lead one into dangerous and false conclusions. – Erwin Rommel

Good soldiers, bad officers; however, don’t forget that without them we would not have any Civilization. – Erwin Rommel

It is often possible to decide the issue of a battle merely by making an unexpected shift of one’s main weight. – Erwin Rommel

The enemy must be annihilated before he reaches our main battlefield. We must stop him in the water, destroying all his equipment while it is still afloat! – Erwin Rommel

The battle is going very heavily against us. We’re being crushed by the enemy weight. We are facing very difficult days, perhaps the most difficult that a man can undergo. – Erwin Rommel

I didn’t die nor win. – Erwin Rommel

I would rather he had given me one more division. – Erwin Rommel

To every man of us, Tobruk was a symbol of British resistance and we were now going to finish with it for good. – Erwin Rommel

It’s better for one to die than for all of us to be killed in a shooting affray. Anyway, we’ve practically no ammunition. – Erwin Rommel

Sweat saves blood, blood saves lives, but brains saves both. – Erwin Rommel

Be an example to your men, in your duty and in private life. Never spare yourself, and let the troops see that you don’t in your endurance of fatigue and privation. Always be tactful and well-mannered and teach your subordinates to do the same. Avoid excessive sharpness or harshness of voice, which usually indicates the man who has shortcomings of his own to hide. – Erwin Rommel

A risk is a chance you take; if it fails you can recover. A gamble is a chance taken; if it fails, recovery is impossible. – Erwin Rommel

In the absence of orders, go find something and kill it. – Erwin Rommel

The German soldier has impressed the world, however the Italian Bersagliere soldier has impressed the German soldier. – Erwin Rommel

For me, soldiers are all equal. Those black people wore your same uniform, fought on your side, and so you will be in the same jail. – Erwin Rommel

One of the most important factors, not only in military matters but in life as a whole, is … the ability to direct one’s whole energies towards the fulfillment of a particular task. – Erwin Rommel

Winning the men’s confidence requires much of a commander. He must exercise care and caution, look after his men, live under the same hardships, and-above all- apply self discipline. But once he has their confidence, his men will follow him through hell and high water. – Erwin Rommel

There is one unalterable difference between a soldier and a civilian: the civilian never does more than he is paid to do. – Erwin Rommel

I would rather be the hammer than the anvil. – Erwin Rommel

The battle is fought and decided by the quartermasters, long before the shooting begins. – Erwin Rommel

Training errors are recorded on paper. Tactical errors are etched in stone. – Erwin Rommel

Always in a moment of extreme danger things can be done which had previously been thought impossible. – Erwin Rommel

When there’s no clear option, it’s better to do nothing. – Erwin Rommel

One cannot permit unique opportunities to slip by for the sake of trifles. – Erwin Rommel

The commander must be at constant pains to keep his troops abreast of all the latest tactical experience and developments and must insist on their practical application. He must see to it that his subordinates are trained in accordance with the latest requirements. The best form of welfare for the troops is first-class training, for this saves unnecessary casualties. – Erwin Rommel

In Tunisia the Americans had to pay a stiff price for their experience, but it brought rich dividends. Even at that time, the American generals showed themselves to be very advanced in the tactical handling of their forces, although we had to wait until the Patton Army in France to see the most astonishing achievements in mobile warfare. – Erwin Rommel

The art of concentrating strength at one point, forcing a breakthrough, rolling up and securing the flanks on either side, and then penetrating like lightning deep into his rear, before the enemy has time to react. – Erwin Rommel

War makes extremely heavy demands on the soldier’s strength and nerves. For this reason, make heavy demands on your men in peacetime exercises. – Erwin Rommel

In view of my services in Africa, I have the chance of dying by poison. Two generals have brought it with them. It is fatal in three seconds. If I take the poison, none of the usual steps will be taken against my family; that is, against you. They will also leave my staff alone. – Erwin Rommel

The best form of welfare for the troops is first-rate training. – Erwin Rommel

No plan survives contact with the enemy. – Erwin Rommel

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