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German Generalfeldmarschall Erwin Rommel, 1944
During World War I, Rommel was instrumental in developing the rapid infiltration and flanking maneuvers that would ultimately become standard practice during the Spring Offensives in 1918. In 1940 he was in France at the head of a Panzer Division. There, he employed the maneuvers that he had established in the previous war with lightning speed and success. Rommel was then appointed commander of the new Deutsches Afrika Korps where he would find both profound success and grievous failure. Briefly serving in Italy, he was reassigned to France and immediately began the restoration of the 1,600 mile long Atlantic Wall. Despite the accelerated rehabilitation to Fortress Europe, the Allies secured five beachheads at Normandy by nightfall of 6 June, 1944.
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