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German History in Documents and Images
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Wilhelm Groener and his Officers During Military Maneuvers in Thuringia and Bavaria (1930)
Threatened by budget cutbacks, the army protected its interests through active political involvement. After military maneuvers in autumn 1930, Defense Minister Wilhelm Groener wrote a letter to General Alarich von Gleich. In it, he described the growing political influence of the Reichswehr: “In the political developments in Germany not a brick may be moved any longer without the word of the Reichswehr being thrown decisively into the balance.” General Kurt von Schleicher (far left), whom Groener referred to as his “cardinal in politics,” used his close ties to both Groener and President Hindenburg to exert political power behind the scenes in the final years of the Weimar Republic.