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Helmuth von Moltke the Elder

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A member of a line of German leaders, Helmuth von Moltke the Elder (1800-1891) was a Prussian field marshal who guided the Austro-Prussian (1866) and Franco-Prussian Wars (1870)

He had a major effect on the development the existing Prussian staff tradition into a modern system for national mobilization of forces and industry, and was chief of general staff (1857–88). As well as writing basic doctrine, he formulated a philosophy of war. [1]

He was the uncle of Helmuth von Moltke the Younger and great-granduncle of Helmuth James Graf von Moltke.


  1. Harry Pross (ed.), Die Zerstörung der deutschen Politik: Dokumente 1871-1933 (Frankfurt, 1959), pp. 29-31. Translated by Richard S. Levy.[1]