The Command Flag of the Chief of the High Command Wilhelm Keitel
The Command Flag of the Chief of the High Command Wilhelm Keitel - Recently acquired from a prominent collection, this Command Flag of the Chief of the High Command of the Armed Forces 1938-1941 is that of Generaloberst Wilhelm Keitel; Swallow-tailed flag with black and white nylon strips forming a border, surrounding a red cotton field, obverse with a white cotton disk in the centre with a black and white embroidered swastika in the middle, the swastika standing on its point, surrounded by a black and white embroidered border, upper left beside the hoist is a black and white embroidered Iron Cross, lower left beside the hoist is a black and white embroidered Armed Forces (Wehrmacht) eagle, the eagle facing towards the hoist, reverse is a mirror image of the obverse, 300 mm x 415 mm, missing its clips, extensive wear evident on the corners of the hoist sleeve, very light soiling, especially in the white areas from active use, near extremely fine. Footnote: In 1938, Hitler assumed the powers of the War Minister after dismissing Field Marshal von Blomberg from that post and re-organizing the Ministry into the High Command of the Armed Forces (Oberkommando der Wehrmacht or OKW). The previous Flag of the War Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces 1935-1938 was then abolished and this flag was adopted in 1938. It continued to be used until 1941, when its use ceased. This flag and the one that followed, were used by Colonel-General (after 1941, Field Marshal) Wilhelm Keitel as Chief of the OKW. At the Allied court at Nuremberg, he was tried, sentenced to death, and hanged as a war criminal. He was the third highest-ranking German officer to be tried at Nuremberg.