Baron Franz Conrad von Hötzendorf


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  • Contemporary History (Post 1945)
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(b. 11 Nov. 1852, d. 25 Aug. 1925).

Chief of Staff of the Austro‐Hungarian army 1906–17 Born in Penzing (Vienna), the professional soldier became a close friend of the Archduke Francis Ferdinand. Appointed in 1906, he did much to reorganize the imperial army and was responsible for its mobilization after the Archduke's death in Sarajevo. A biography by Günther Kronenbitter (2003) showed that Hötzendorf was well aware that war constituted a massive gamble. He was motivated to push for war not least because he hoped this would make him a hero, and persuade the love of his life, a married woman, to divorce her husband for him. In 1915 he took the field and defeated the Russian army in Galicia. He was dismissed, however, by the new Emperor Charles I. In June 1917 he commanded the army and was defeated at Asiago in Italy. He then retired and wrote his memoirs.

Subjects: Contemporary History (Post 1945) — Military History.

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