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Walther Wever (11 November 1887 in Meinerzhagen – 3 June 1936) was a pre-World War II Luftwaffe Commander.

Military career

On 1 September 1933 he became the Commander of the Reichsluftfahrtministeriummarker, and later became Chief of Staff of the Luftwaffe, a post he held up until his death.Wever was a supporter of the Strategic bomber and recognised its importance as early as 1934. He supported the aviation companies like Junkers and Dornier, in their respective projects to produce the Ju 89 and Dornier Do 19 Ural Bomber.Wever outlined five key points to air strategy:
To destroy the enemy air force by bombing its bases and aircraft factories, and defeating enemy air forces attacking German targets.

To prevent the movement of large enemy ground forces to the decisive areas by destroying railways and roads, particularly bridges and tunnels, which are indispensable for the movement and supply of forces
3.To support the operations of the army formations, independent of railways, i.e, armoured forces and motorised forces, by impeding the enemy advance and participating directly in ground operations.

To support naval operations by attacking naval bases, protecting Germany's naval bases and participating directly in naval battles

To paralyze the enemy armed forces by stopping production in the armaments factories.

However after his death, other strategists, like Ernst Udet and Hans Jeschonnek favoured smaller aircraft as they did not expend as much material and manpower. They were proponents of the dive-bomber (Junkers Ju 87) and the doctrine of close support and destruction of the opposing airforces on the 'battle-ground' rather than through attacking enemy industry.As a result, high-speed medium-bombers like Heinkel He 111, Dornier Do 17, Junkers Ju 88 were developed, with much initial success.

Walther Wever funeral
On 6 June 1936 Wever flew from Berlinmarker to Dresdenmarker, to give a lecture at the Luftkriegsakademie to a gathering of Luftwaffe cadets; when he received the news of the passing of a World War I German hero. He immediately set off for Berlin. On his return journey the Heinkel He 70 Blitz that he was flying had not been properly examined during preflighted checks, and the aileron gust locks were not removed. The aircraft was airborne when the wing dipped, the Heinkel stalled and went into a horizontal cartwheel (apparently akin to a ground loop, but at low altitude instead), and exploded in flames killing Wever and his flight engineer.

After Wever's death, a Luftwaffe bomber wing, Kampfgeschwader 4 General Wever was named after him.His son, also named, Walther Wever was a fighter pilot, who was killed in action in April 1945.


  • Corum, J.F. (1999). "Staerken und Schwaechen der Luftwaffe" in Mueller, R. & Volkmann, H.E. (Ed.) Die Wehrmacht: Mythos und Realitaet. Muenchen: Oldenbourg Verlag.
  • Corum, J.F. (1997). The Luftwaffe; Creating the Operational Air War 1918-1940. University Press of Kansas. ISBN 0-7006-0836-2
  • Griehl, Manfred & Dressel, Joachim. (1994) Bombers of the Luftwaffe. DAG Publications. ISBN 1-85409-140-9


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