The Reich Regular Armed Forces

The bulk of the armed forces are made up of Citizens and Non-Citizens doing their State Service, although about 20% of all those who choose the forces to do this either stay on after their five years is up, or re-enlist at a later date. Beyond State Service, enlistment as a professional soldier (or equivalent) is usually for a period of ten years, which can be extended as long as the soldier/sailor/airman is willing and fit to continue serving as a member of the forces.

In contrast, the officer corps is completely made up of volunteers, with the usual initial enlistment period being fifteen years. However, as becoming an officer bestows certain privileges within Reich Society, there is rarely a shortage of willing participants. Officers are trained at one of three Wehrmacht military academies: Berlin, Wilhelmsburg or Hamburg.

There are five main branches of the Reich Armed Forces: the Heimat-Heer (HH), the Heimat-Kriegsmarine (HK), the Ausland-Heer (AH), the Ausland-Kriegsmarine (AK) and the Luftwaffe. The Internal (Heimat-) forces are responsible for military operations on Magica Superior itself and within the Aussenhandel der Reichsverband states, while the External (Ausland-) forces are involved in conducting the cross-Shadow war beyond the boundaries of the Reich lands and allies. The Luftwaffe only operates Externally.

In addition, there is a separate force known as the Sturmabteilung (SA), which has grown from being a bodyguard for important Reich officials into a large and effective paramilitary force, although within it there remains a small, specialist unit which is responsible for the safety and security of Crown Prince Johan and his family, Princess Wilhelmina and Princess Astrid. It exists in conjunction with the Schutzstaffel, as it has the patronage of the Kaiser and even the Reichsführer-SS has not gainsaid this. Most SA operations are undertaken Internally, although forces have occasionally been deployed in External attacks.

The Reich High Command – the Oberkommando der Wehrmacht (OKW) – is the overall body responsible for the administration and organisation of the Reich Armed Forces, as well as choosing the Wehrmacht representatives to the Reichstag Senate. It is then subdivided into six departments, one for each of the five arms of the Reich Forces, and a sixth with responsibility for the SA.

The Reich Staff Council

The Reich High Command is overseen and controlled by the Wehrmacht Staff Council. In the earliest days of the Reich, this comprised seven members, five of whom could vote on command policy, with the respective heads of the SA and the Reichs-SS as non-voting advisors. However, as time has passed, this now doubled more than doubled to eighteen, the most recent additions being the General Commanding the Waffen-SS, the Reichsprotektors of Manira and Westphalia, Crown Prince Johan, who joined the council to represent his father when the Heads of the SA and Reichs-SS became voting members as of 1 July 158, and Markus von Klaus, head of the Raumfahrt Marine (based on the Outside).

The Marshall in Charge of the Council (the Reichsmarschall) is the most senior voting member, and also has the ability to break a deadlock if needed. At this time, the title is held by Gottfried von Schell, although he also retains his original rank of Generalfeldmarschall. With the exception of the Reichsführer-SS (who is an exception to most things), the majority of members of the Staff Council are career military who have worked their way up through the ranks over a period of many years. Marlene Rike and Ria Peiper currently hold the highest ranks ever achieved by women in the Reich Forces.

The current members of the Council are as follows:

Council Member Military Responsibility
Reichsmarschall Gottfried von Schell  Ausland-Heer (AH)
Grossadmiral Joachim von Ekkehardt, Herzog von Stuttgart Ausland-Kriegsmarine (AK)
Generalfeldmarschall Marlene Rike Heimat-Heer (HH)
Grossadmiral Egon Hartmut Heimat-Kriegsmarine (HK)
Generalfeldmarschall Alexius von Alois, Landgraf von Essen Luftwaffe
Admiral Markus von Klaus Raumfahrt-Marine
Generaloberst Matthias Fischer Abwehr
Generaloberst Hochprinz Johan Imperial Representative
Reichsführer-SS Rupert Delatz Head of the Reichs-SS
Reichsführer-OR Jürgen Kessler Reichsprotektor of the Outer Reich
Oberstgruppenführer Joachim Peiper Waffen-SS
Generalfeldmarschall Ria Peiper Reichsprotektor of Sachsen
Generalfeldmarschall Erwin Ludwig, Freiherr von Arnstadt Reichsprotektor of Thüringen
Obergruppenführer Marthe Karlsdotte Reichsprotektor of Manira
Generalfeldmarschall Lucian Becker Reichsprotektor of Bettenfeld
Obergruppenführer Wolfgang Xavier Reichsprotektor of Verrien
Oberstgruppenführer Silvester Hannes Reichsprotektor of Fürst
Oberstgruppenführer Matthias Kapler Reichsprotektor of Sanguine
Generaloberst Deitrich Heinz Head of the SA

Reichsmarschall Gottfried von Schell, Landgraf von Wilhelmshafen

Gottfried von Schell was born in RY031, the elder son of Claus, the Uradel Landgraf von Wilhelmshafen, however Gottfried was the first of his family to exhibit the Talent. He did his State Service with the Ausland-Heer before going to the military mage college to study magic. After graduation, he joined one of the regiments concerned with military engineering, for which he showed a distinct flair. He returned to college to study for both his Master and his Doctorate, and as the years passed, he developed specialities in both siege and structural magic. However, far from solely being an engineer, his natural ability as a leader of men came through as his career progressed, and as he rose through the ranks, he was given command of increasingly large numbers of front-line troops. He proved himself to be a competent and popular commander, earning a number of gallantry awards, including the Gold Cross.

His father died in RY087, at which point Gottfried inherited his title and took a break from his military career to spend time in the family lands. However, about five years later he was invited to resume his career at the rank of Generalmajor. He accepted the offer and joined the General Staff of the Ausland-Heer, based largely in Berlin although he did regularly return to the field, where he demonstrated that he’d lost none of his talent as a front-line commander. He was awarded the Blue Max for outstanding bravery in RY101, and thereafter continued to be promoted within the Ausland-Heer, earning the award of Knight of the Iron Cross in RY113. He was appointed Generalfeldmarschall commanding in the Ausland-Heer in RY128 on the retirement of his predecessor and became the Reichsmarschall in RY147.

He is married to Hanna von Gies, aunt of Erich, Graf von Strasbourg and they have three sons and a daughter. The eldest son, Axel, spent fifteen years as an officer with the Heimat-Heer before returning home to assist with the running of the Wilhelmshafen estate. The other two sons are in the Ausland-Heer and the daughter is a pilot in the Luftwaffe. His brother Magnus holds the rank of Generaladmiral in the Ausland-Kriegsmarine.

The Abwehr – Reich Military Intelligence

The Abwehr is concerned with analysis of information on military matters such as enemy troop movements, organisation and materiel, etc plus the location of enemy assets. It also has a small branch which deals with sabotage against the enemy. It is the only intelligence service of any kind within the Reich which is not directly under the auspices of the RSHA (the Reich Main Security Office), although by default it does have to have some contact with the latter.

Generaloberst Matthias Fischer, Freiherr von Dönitz

The commanding officer of the Abwehr is the highly experienced and canny Matthias Fischer. That he’s managed to keep the Abwehr in tact and as a separate organisation to the RSHA is a testament to his common sense and ability at negotiating the minefield of Reich politics. A career officer, he was born in RY016 to a minor nobility family and did military State Service before opting to join the Ausland-Heer. However, he soon demonstrated an inherent ability at covert operations and was transferred over to the Abwehr in RY045, where he has remained ever since.

He was promoted to Generalmajor and appointed commander of the Abwehr in RY081, a position he has retained ever since. Kaiser Wilhelm acknowledged him as his son in April RY099. Matthias is married to Daniela, and they have two sons and a daughter.

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