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Agustín Muñoz Grandes

Agustín Muñoz Grandes (January 27, 1896 – July 11, 1970) was a Spanish general, and politician, vice-president of the Spanish Government and minister with Francisco Franco several times; also known as the commander of the Blue Division between 1941 and 1943.

Biography

Born to a humble family in Madrid, Muñoz Grandes enrolled at the Toledo Infantry Academy while in his teens. Upon graduating, he was deployed to Morocco in 1915 and took part in the decisive Battle of Alhucemas. Muñoz Grandes fought for the Nationalists during the Spanish Civil War and was promoted to General, taking command in the Army of Africa. He led the Spanish Legionnaires in the attack that won Málaga for the Nationalists in February 1937.

In 1941, Muñoz Grandes was given command of the División Azul, Generalísimo Franco's volunteer unit created for service under the Wehrmacht in Russia. Muñoz Grandes was well acquainted with the German military establishment, and attended several interviews with Wilhelm Canaris and Adolf Hitler.

During his command Muñoz Grandes was decorated with the Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross, with Oak Leaves personally added by Hitler.

He was recalled to Spain in December 1942. A promotion to Lieutenant General awaited him at home, and his post on the Eastern Front was taken up by Emilio Esteban Infantes.

Muñoz Grandes was appointed Captain-General of I Military District in 1945 and Minister of Defence in 1950. He served as First Vice President of Spain from 1962 to 1967. Нe also was decorated by U.S. General Dwight D. Eisenhower after World War II ended and by Konrad Adenauer, First Chancellor (Bundeskanzler) of West Germany after the war.

Muñoz Grandes died in 1970.

References

  • Kleinfeld, Gerald A. (1979). Hitler's Spanish Legion: The Blue Division in Russia. Southern Illinois University Press. ISBN 0809308657.  
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