Expression of condolences about Honorary Member Colonel iTR Siegfried Wilfling

With great sadness we have the duty to inform that our comrade and Honorary Member Colonel iTR Siegfried Wilfling passed on after a fulfilled and busy life on 31th of January 2019.

The President of the Union of European Military Historical Groups Major General iTR Michael Blaha, the executive committee, the Presidium and all comrades of the UEHMG express their deepest sympathy to the bereaved for this grave loss.

The UEHMG will honor his deserving official in honor.


Expression of condolences about Colonel iTR Harald Sautter

With great dismay and sadness we have the duty to inform that our long-time comrade and chairman of the Judiciary Committee Colonel iTR Harald Sautter fell asleep peacefully in the circle of his family and left us on  5th of January 2019.

The President of the Union of European Military Historical Groups Major General iTR Michael Blaha, the executive committee, the Presidium and all comrades of the UEHMG express their deepest sympathy to the bereaved for this grave loss.

The UEHMG will honor his deserving official in honor.

Short presentation on the Regiment Day on 4.12.2018

For today’s regimental day of the “Riding Artillery Division No. 2”
A commemoration in awe.

The writer Franz Kafka noted in his diary on 1 August 1914: “Russia declared war on the monarchy. Afternoon swimming school.”

However, with this formulation, which seems incredible to us today, Kafka expressed the expectation of many of his contemporaries. A short, successful military campaign, as in 1878/79, during the occupation of Bosnia-Herzegovina – followed by a return to peaceful normality: that was the expectation of the majority of the population in the first days of August 1914 in all the provinces of the great monarchy.

But it turned out differently. It began a four-year bloody war with millions dead. In short, it became the “original catastrophe of the 20th century,” as the American historian and diplomat George Kennan has described it. Today, 100 years after the outbreak of the First World War and 75 years after the beginning of the Second World War, we commemorate the victims of war and tyranny. We remember the artillerymen of the RAD 2, but also – symbolically – all the soldiers, the civil war victims, the victims of later massacres and genocides.

The term “grief” comes from the Old High German “truren” and means “to be sad”. In this mourning today we want to stand before the memorial inscription and the estate of the “Riding Artillery Division No. 2” and commemorate their personal great sacrificial performance and their loyalty to the emperor and the empire.

Ultimately, these sacrifices were not in vain, for they remind us: Never again war in our lands!
In this sense we now speak together “Our Father”.

Bürgerwache Crailsheim erlebte das vorweihnachtliche Wien

On Friday, 8th December 2018, a 52-person group of citizens of the civil guard Crailsheim headed out to Vienna. Without appreciable traffic impairments we arrived punctually in the Austrian capital on the Danube and took up quarters in the education center of the ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways) near a railway station (how can it be otherwise) quarters. In the evening we went to the “Schützenhaus” at the Danube Canal for the typical “Wiener Schnitzel”. The owner of the restaurant, Christian Pock, is a member of a traditional Austrian association. So it was obviously a great pleasure for him to feed the civil guard.

The next day, it was time to explore Vienna. Here we met 2 profound city guides (also members of traditional Austrian associations – K and K or Marine Association) at the State Opera. After a small city tour by bus, we went to the Natural History Museum. Then we visited the imperial treasury inside the Hofburg. Strengthened by a lunch in the “Bierklinik”, the church of St. Peter and St. Stephen’s Cathedral were visited. The wonderfully illuminated Christmas market on Rathausplatz invited to stroll and re-strengthen.

At 6 pm, the civil guard arrived in front of the Hofburg in full uniform, where the military greeting of Commander Rosenäcker to Major General iTR Michael Blaha, President of the Union of the European Historical Military Groups, took place. Among other things the President organized the city guides and the performance with the necessary permits from the city of Vienna. After that we marched past the Spanish Riding School to Michaelerplatz where a concert with historical marches (including “Wien bleibt Wien”, “Hoch- und Deutschmeister” and also Christmas carols) took place. We finished with a salute.

From the trade association of the city of Vienna the civic guard was invited to a cup of punch or glühwein and immediately was invited for the next year. We comfortably let the evening end in the quarter. On the next day we visited the Schönbrunn Palace and then started the journey home with many beautiful impressions.

Abbot consecration at the Teutonic Order

The new Grand Master of the Teutonic Order, Frank Bayard, has received his abbot consecration on 17.11.2018. Cardinal Christoph Schönborn performed the solemn blessing on Saturday morning in St. Stephen’s Cathedral in the presence of numerous members of the Order from Germany and abroad. The General Chapter of the Teutonic Order had elected the 47-year-old Bayard to the 66th Grand Master in August, with a term of six years.

The UEHMG was represented by its President Major General iTR Michael Blaha, MSc, who himself is the bearer of the Order of Merit of the Teutonic Order and is well acquainted with the new Grand Master since 2008. At the subsequent celebration, there was the opportunity to congratulate the new Grand Master together with IKKH Camilla von Habsburg and to thank the former Hochmeister Dr. Bruno Platter for the long time good cooperation in tradition care.

Centennial celebrations in Verdun, 24. – 26. August 2018

The DGHU e.V. was again, as in 2016, invited to the centennial celebrations in Verdun. On all 3 days we had the task, together with French actors to represent German soldiers at the Fort Froideterre, in addition, there were several major events. On friday evening to commemorate the Ossuaire, the large Gebeinhaus on the former Battlefield, whose huge tower reminds of a grenade.

On Saturday morning, the author ordered a wreath for the 34th Infantry Division (Metz) at the Thiaumont intercession, which had been deployed there from late August to 24 October 1916, to which the 4th Rheinische Infanterieregiment Graf Werder Nr. 30 belonged since 1876 lay until the March 1914 in garrison in Saarlouis, which has also been the birth and garrison town of the author. In the afternoon we had a tour through Verdun and a graduation ceremony at the Center Mondiale de la Paix. The parade was certainly visited by 5,000 to 10,000 people applauding on the right and left of the streets, shaking hands and exchanging warm words.

On Sunday morning, a large memorial celebration was held at the devastated and never rebuilt village of Fleury devant Douaumont, which was also very well attended. The exclusively positive experiences continued, which we also know from Paris 2014, Verdun 2016 and many other smaller events in France. The French, but certainly many tourists and tourists, were not only friendly, they welcomed all the performers, gave a lot of praise or wished ‘Bonjour’. Everywhere nice people who marveled at us on the Meuse, at the forts themselves, in the barracks or in the restaurant, many raised thumbs, smile, nodding, obvious joy, talking about this and that or why you do that, where you’re from.

On Friday evening when we marched around the large cemetery on the Ossuaire and took the small slope at the Ouvrage de Thiaumont, people cheered and applauded for us, the same happened during the march through the city. Also at the departure of Fleury as we marched up the small slope to the street, after we sang together with Romanian actors ‘I had a comrade’ in German following the official part of the event. Also at the wreath-laying a few got teary-eyed, it was a lot of emotionality, especially among the performers, who knew what was happening there 100 years ago. Quite a few people have after all lost a part of their ancestors there; the war itself ultimately led to an at least as monstrous second such war, which ate even more hearts and sowed hatred. It took a long time to transform this hatred into friendship and passion, and we performers now often experience first-hand, that this is not a phrasing, but is lived in everyday life and especially on such events, even by the benevolent Politics on the French side. Again and again, the author has experienced big emotions and gratitude, especially with the regional politicians. There was an incredible amount of emotion to feel and see towards us Germans, which was always honest and never feigned.

After all, one can really say that Germans and French have become real friends, that they need each other and that they like to be together with the other “field post number” and celebrate together. I will never forget these positive experiences, and I am very grateful to have been there to live and experience friendship, where others often talk about it without personal commitment. Thank you very much, dear people on the other side of the Rhine, thank you, friends, whom I know, appreciate and even love, thank you very much brothers and sisters in blue and white and red!!!

On eternal friendship, on eternal brotherhood, on eternal peace between our peoples.
Au revoir, a bientôt!

Author: Herbert W. Theisen, Diplom-Verwaltungswirt, Oberleutnant i.Tr.
Infanterieregiment Graf Werder (4. Rhein.) Nr. 30, Saarlouis
1. Lothringisches Pionierbataillon Nr. 16, Metz

photos: Friedrich Wein, Luc Pottiez, Andreas Springer

Montur & Pulverdampf

Under this motto the Museum of Military History in Vienna held a spectacular journey through seven centuries of military history on 8 and 9 July 2018. With camps, medieval market, shows, crafts, children’s program, performances by various re-enactment groups and much more.

Nearly 13,000 visitors took the opportunity to participate in this experience.

The UEHMG was represented for the second time at this major event with its own tent and the opportunity to present their members and maintain contact.

In addition to the demonstrations of the “Deutschmeister Schützenkorps” and the “Reitende Artilleriedivision No. 2 (RAD2)” who have been attending for many years, was a concert of the “k.u.k. Wiener Regimentskapelle IR4” one of the highlights of this year.

A big honor for the above mentioned groups was the visit of IKKH Camilla von Habsburg-Lothringen at this event.

Emperor Karl Memorial Mass in Biedermannsdorf

On the initiative of the “Biedermannsdorfer Kapellenverein” one commemorated on 21.10.2018 in the context of a holy mass, celebrated by pastor Dr. med. Bernhard Mucha, the beatification of Emperor Karl I, followed by a wreath-laying ceremony in front of the Emperor Karl Chapel.

The most active participants were IKKH Camilla von Habsburg-Lothringen, with General-Adjutant of the House of Habsburg, MajGen iTR Peter Pritz, accompanied by the Knights of the Order of St. George and the Military Hospital Order of St. Lazarus of Jerusalem.

With standards went on traditional associations such as the “Deutschmeister Schützenkorps”, the “Reitende Artillerie Division Nr. 2”, the “Dragoner Regiment Nr. 3 König von Sachsen” and the “Dragonerregiment Nr. 2 Graf Pejacsevich”.

Furthermore represented were the “katholischen österreichischen Landsmannschaften” as well as the FF Biedermannsdorf.

After the Mass, the procession to the Emperor Karl Chapel took place, the blessing of those present with the Emperor Karl Reliquie, the repositio of the relic followed by a wreath-laying ceremony by the FF Biedermannsdorf.

Lieutenant iTR Alfred Cunat of the “Deutschmeister Schützenkorps” made a military message to the Highest-serving IKKH Camilla von Habsburg-Lothringen. In the course of the wreath-laying ceremony, a General-de-Charge was shot as a tribute under trumpet sounds by the “Deutschmeister Schützenkorps”.

After the closing message to the most present and as the conclusion of the solemn event the chapel society under Maj Peter Fuhrich invited all present to the Agape and a cozy get-together.