From Dreyfus to Petain: The Struggle of a Republic

By Wilhelm Herzog; Walter Sorell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 16

VON SCHWARTZKOPPEN

MAX VON SCHWARTZKOPPEN was born in Potsdam in 1850. He took part in the war against France in 1870-1871. He was appointed second military attaché at Paris, at which post he remained until 1885, when he became military adviser to the Grand Duke of Hessen at Darmstadt. In 1891, he was appointed first military attaché at Paris, where he served under the German ambassador, Count Muenster, for six years.

In the course of the Dreyfus Affair, he was violently attacked by the Parisian press as early as 1894. The attacks increased in 1897 when Esterhazy was exposed and his connection with the German military attaché became known. He was recalled in November, 1897, immediately before Mathieu Dreyfus' accusations. He left Paris after a farewell visit to Félix Faure, the President of the Republic. It was the very day on which the whole world learned of his activity as Esterhazy's employer. During the trial at Rennes in September, 1899, Dreyfus' counselor, Labori, asked for his summons as a witness, but this motion was rejected.

In 1917 he died in a Berlin hospital, tortured by remorse for his silence.

Von Schwartzkoppen's career was typical of a correct German officer, always at attention. His highest idols were military discipline and the trust of his commander-in-chief. As a human being he was noble and not without intellectual interests, but he considered obedience to his "Most Serene and Most Gracious Imperial Majesty," who placed him in the responsible Parisian post, his foremost duty. The severe military system demanded of all its members the renunciation of personal inclinations which ran counter to the system, the abandonment of freedom of thought and action, the yielding of all independence in one's judgment, and the deadening of human feelings should military necessities demand it. Every officer had to obey the orders of his superior as blindly and unconditionally as did any mere private.

-220-

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From Dreyfus to Petain: The Struggle of a Republic
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Contents *
  • Chapter I - A Struggle of Dauntless Courage 1
  • Chapter 2 - Six Phases of the Dreyfus Affair 4
  • Chapter 3 - French Nationalism and the Catholic Church 18
  • Chapter 4 - French Anti-Semitism at the Turn of the Century 25
  • Chapter - Captain Alfred Dreyfus 59
  • Chapter 6 - The Generals of the Republic 65
  • Chapter 7 - The Alarmed Bourgeoisie 79
  • Chapter 8 - Clemenceau 85
  • Chapter 9 - Zola: His Background 111
  • Chapter 10 - Zola as a Fighter 120
  • Chapter 11 - Zola on Trial 137
  • Chapter 12 - Zola in Exile 151
  • Chapter 13 - Jaures 160
  • Chapter 14 - Picquart 176
  • Chapter 15 - Esterhazy 197
  • Chapter 16 - Von Schwartzkoppen 220
  • Chapter 17 - The German Side of the Affair 227
  • Chapter 18 - The Struggle Never Ends 254
  • Bibliography 301
  • Index 307
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