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German Wehrmacht Commands and Drill:

Section One:

a) Basics:

Verstanden = Understood (it is impolite to say it on parade but satisfactory when

in combat).
Ich werde mein Bestes tun= I will try my best.
Jawohl, Herr........ = Yes sir (replace ............ with the title of person e.g.
(Klar) Verstanden / Jawohl= clear or understood (can be said as in I understand.
DEFINITELY NOT clear as in area clear).
Ich habe den Auftrag... (say what you have to do)= I will comply/adapt.

b) Maneuver Commands:

Zielwechsel nach links /rechts!= change soldiers direction of fire.

Linker Flgel vor / Attack left flank
Rechter Flgel vor/ Attack right flank
Angriff rechte Flanke/
Links /Rechts umgehen = go around him.
Maschinengewehr vor! = move the machinegun forwards.
Maschinengewehr (better = MG) Stellungswechsel nach ...(links / rechts)!= move the
machinegun there (don't forget to point where)
Kette bilden= Line formation
Reihe bilden= Wide formation
Sammeln= Point formation
Abstnde vergrssern / Auflockern= Scatter

Section Two: In the heat of battle:

Feuerschutz!= covering fire!

Gib mir Feuerschutz!= You cover me!
Entschuldigung, aber sie haben ihr Handgranate vegessen= Excuse me but I think you
forgot your grenade. (only as a joke in exercises, not in a real battle!)
Wacht auf! / Alarm = watch out!
(Hand-)Granate! =Grenade!
Vorsicht! / Achtung = warning
Rennt um euer Leben! Er hat eine Panzerfaust!= Run for your lives! He has a
Kopf runter, du Idiot! better = Volle Deckung!= Keep your head down idiot!
Auf! Auf! Auf! = Out! Out! Out!
Los, Los, Los!= Go Go Go!
Zurck /Rckzug!= Get away! As in to run away.
Steh auf = get up (to several people)
Hinlegen = lay down
Laufschritt = run
(Vorwrts) Marsch = march (better given as hand signal)
Melder zu mir! = dispatcher / call-taker
(Gebiet) Stellung feindfrei / gesichert= area secure.
Wir strmen mit Handgranaten und Maschinenpistolen= storm them with hand grenades
and machine pistols.
Wir brauchen Panzeruntersttzung, jetzt!= we need tank support now!
Wir brauchen Luftuntersttzung!= We need air support
Achtung! Fliegeralarm= warning fighter alarm! (As in the aircraft, good one for
tankies and vehicle owners)
Wir brauchen Artillerie-feuer, auf dieser Position!= We need artillery fire on this
Zurck!= Retreat!
Nicht schieen, wir ergeben uns= Dont shoot, we give up!
Ich bin verwundet= I am wounded
Gefangennehmen!= get him!


Schwein= Pig
Verflucht / Verdammt nochmal!= (No it doesnt mean F*** you) curse you!
Verdammter Amerikaner= damn Americans (change with: Brite or Ivan or Russe)
Erschiessen!= Shoot him!

Section Three: Individual Drill

Raustreten! Everybody out! This was used to get recruits out of the classroom or
(1. Zug/Kompanie/Abteilung) ... Stillgestanden! Heels together, toes pointed out at
not quite a right angle. Shoulders squared. Arms are thrown slightly forward, with
the hands flat, with the middle finger resting against the trouser seam. Eyes
Links... um! Left face.
Rechts... um! Right face.
Abteilung, kehrt! About face. In the German Army, this is done by turning to the
LEFT--repeat: to the LEFT.
Rhrt Euch! Left foot slightly forward, body at rest. Talking is still forbidden.
Hinlegen!/ Stellung! Lie down.
Auf!......Get up.
Laufen / gehen / halt......Run / walk / stop.

Manual of Arms:

The basic sequence of movements begins with...

Grundstellung (Order arms)--The weapon's butt is rested on the ground alongside the
soldier's right foot, trigger guard facing forward. The rifle is grasped in the
right hand near the upper barrel band. The left hand and arm remains in the
position of attention.

Das Gewehr...ber! (Shoulder arms)--This is done in five counts, and only the hands
and arms must move; the body stays absolutely rigid. 1) The rifle is swung up in
the right hand. The left hand grabs the piece just under the right hand. 2) The
right hand now moves down and grasps the top of the rifle's action. 3) The rifle is
placed on the left shoulder with the right hand, while the left hand reaches down
and supports the buttplate. 4) A one count pause. 5) The right arm is returned to
the position of attention. The rifle is supported so that it is almost vertical.

Gewehr . ab! (Order arms)--This is done from shoulder arms in 4 counts, and again,
the body must stay absolutely rigid. 1) The left arm extends and lets the rifle
slide down the chest. 2) The right hand comes across the chest and grabs the piece
near the upper barrel band. 3) The rifle is swung down across the body and the butt
is landed on the ground. The trigger guard will be facing away from the soldier. 4)
The rifle is twisted so that the trigger guard is facing forward and the butt is
slid in towards the right foot. We are now back to Grundstellung.

There is also another maneuver, Present arms, which was generally not taught to
recruits later in the war. If needed, we will practice it from time-to-time.
The maneuver starts from "Das Gewehr ber. "Achtung!.Prsentiert das...Gewehr! 1) At
the command: Achtung The rifle is twisted in the left hand until the trigger guard
is facing to the left. The right hand simultaneously grabs the rifle at the grip.
2) At the command: Prsentiert das...Gewehr! The rifle is swung forward and down
until the upper barrel band is level with the right eye--simultaneously bringing
the right foot back a half step. The left hand grasps the rifle near the rear

1. Das Gewehr...ber! From present arms, we always go back to das Gewehr ber. It is
done in 2 counts: The rifle is lifted by the right hand and replaced on the left
shoulder. The left hand supports the buttplate.
2. The left hand is returned to the position of attention.
Closed Order Formations and Marching

Geschlossene Ordnung und Marsch

There were two elementary close formations: The Reihe (rye-eh), and the Linie
(leen-yeh). The Reihe was a line with the men facing front-to-back, and the Linie
was a line with the soldiers standing shoulder to shoulder. The interval when in
Reihe was called Abstand and was 80cm [put in inches or arm lengths], and when in
Linie it was called Zwischenraum and unless otherwise ordered was with the elbows
just touching on each man. In each formation the end man on the right (or front)
was called the Flgelman (in open order called the Anschluman); the lines always
formed on him.

Some things to remember when in formation:

1. Always fall-in at attention (Angetreten) unless instructed otherwise.
2. If you have a weapon, fall-in at Grundstellung (order arms).
3. When called to attention--"Stillgestanden," or "Stich" (shteek) click your heels
4. Always fall-in with a Feldmtze on your head unless you are ordered to wear your
5. The first and generally the last formations of the day will usually require
Dienstanzug only and no combat gear, unless otherwise ordered by the ranking man.
6. When placed at Rhrt Euch (rest) while in formation, remain in the formation and
don't wander off to talk to a friend. If you must leave the formation, ask your
squad leader first. Something else about Rhrt Euch, it is literally a rest
position, not a position to "BS" in. Soldiers should not talk in ranks unless given
permission first.

The standard German closed order marching formation was in 3 files, with the squad
leader leading each file. In other words, three squads in Reihe formation marching
side-by-side made up the Zug Marschordnung. The Gruppe itself can also be put into
Marschordnung, with the group leader and the MG team in the front rank, group
leader on the right end, and the assistant group leader on the left end of the rear

The command to dress the ranks (to the right) is Nach rechts...Richt Euch! Everyone
except the Fluegelman turns his head to the right and dresses the ranks. Heads
remained turned until Augen gerade...aus! is commanded.
The normal command for eyes right is Augen...rechts! The head should be turned
smartly. The command for eyes front is Augen gerade...aus! For eyes left, the
command is slightly different. The command is Die Augen...links!--the reason for
this difference is so that the men would be prepped to look in the proper direction
before the command is given. When you hear Augen... you know you will be looking to
the right--ALWAYS. Conversely, when you hear Die Augen... you know you will be
looking to the left--ALWAYS.
The German command for forwards-march, is .. Marsch! This may be prefixed with a
particular command such as Ohne Tritt (route step), Im Gleichschritt (march step),
or Im Laufschritt (double time). The standard German marching cadence was 114 steps
per minute.
The German command for right (or left) turn was Rechts (Links) schwenkt...Marsch!
The leading man or rank commences the turn on the Marsch command. The formation has
to turn ( a maximum 180) until the command Gerade is given. The turn for the
formation ends with the word Aus when the last soldier has fulfilled the turn.

Preset command: static.

Step 1: Raustreten!
Step 2: In Marschordnung antreten! / In Linie antreten! / In Reihe antreten!
Step 3: Achtung! or Stillgestanden!
Step 4: Nach rechts! Richt Euch!
Step 5: Augen gerade...aus!
Step 6:Rhrt Euch!

Preset command: moving from static.

Step 1: Im Gleichschritt! Marsch!

Step 2: Links schwenkt ..Marsch - Gerade ... aus!
Step 3: Rechts schwenkt ..Marsch- Gerade ... aus!
Step 4: Abteilung . halt! (Taken on the left foot, check.check, stop)
Step 5: Links um! (One, turn on left foot.pause, right foot forward to heel.)

Preset rifle drill.

Step 1: Grundstellung!
Step 2: Das Gewehr...ber!
Step 3: Gewehr ab!
Step 4: Gewehr umhngen!
Step 5: Wegtreten