A Last Desperate Gamble
In my opinion MvR had to have been plagued with huge doubts concerning Germany's chances of winning the war. However, the roads to the Western Front that he flew over daily were clogged with victorious troops and equipment coming west from Russia. To the south Italy had been neutalized and although Germany's "America Program" to vastly increase aircraft production had clearly failed he had to feel that he and his men stood a real chance of maybe not winning but at least ending the war on favorable terms for the German Empire.
He must have known that the offensives he was engaged in at the time of his death were Germany's last chance at victory before the Americans and the blockade brought his nation to her knees. When he went down, newly developed tactics were carrying the strom troopers and follow on units further and further into enemy territory and I hope for his sake that he did not die seeing himself as a cynical actor in a lost cause.
And finally, as has been alluded to above, a soldier fights for menay things, most important of which are friends, home and honor. Unlike most people caught up in the Great War, MvR must have recognized his unique role in history and and as a national symbol. He and his flyers would have flown against and fought Satan's winged angels themselves if it meant keeping Germany safe. VR, Scott
Last edited by Roadhog; 11 September 2007 at 08:27 PM.