308 SUPERIORITY OF GERMAN TANKS What I've learnt from Oshima concerning the Japanese submarine war has filled me both with satisfaction and with anger. The fact is that the pocket submarine, with only two men aboard, has been suggested to us several times. With what an air of superiority our specialists rejected it! In the technological war, it's the side which arrives at a given point with the necessary weapon that wins the battle. If we succeed this year in getting our new tanks into the line in the proportion of twelve per division, we'll crushingly outclass all our opponents' tanks. It's enough to give Rommel twenty-four of them to guarantee him the advantage. If the Americans arrive with their tanks, he'll bowl them over like rabbits. What's important is to have the technical superiority in every case at a decisive point. I know that; I'm mad on technique. We must meet the enemy with novelties that take him by surprise, so as continually to keep the initiative. If the three transports that we wanted to send to Narvik had arrived safely, our warships would not have been sunk, and history would have taken a different course. Supposing I'd known the exact situation, I'd immediately have recalled my men, for lack of audacity. Praise and thanks to the cretin who carried negligence to the point of not informing us that our transports couldn't get through. The fact that our enterprise was nevertheless successful, that was a real defiance of fate—for we had no reasonable chance of succeeding. It's likewise an event unique in history that we charged to attack a port, believing it to be fortified, and therefore hoping that we could use it as a base—and this all the more inasmuch as we had, from the former Minister for War of the nation concerned, information that later proved to be false. A savoury detail is that Churchill at once sent his son to Norway—an urchin like that!—to trumpet the arrival of the British liberators. Our good luck was that the English surprised some of our ships, especially the one that was carrying the Flak. Contrary to the orders I'd given, the men of this unit were wearing their
BRITISH FURY OVER NORWAY 309 uniform. The English returned whence they had come, long enough to ask for instructions—and it's to this chance circumstance we owed our ability to be the first to land. The best proof that these swine wanted to try something that time is that they're in a state of fury. The fact is, we frustrated their intentions by having our information published in the Norwegian and Danish press. What a post-mortem they must have held to find out how we were informed! As for their Sicilian intrigues, they've been nipped in the bud by Kesselring's arrival. 147 loth February 1942, evening SPECIAL GUEST: HIMMLER Motor cars and their drivers. Adolf Müller's the man to whom I owe the fact that I understand the art of driving a car. Müller had very much vexed me by saying that my car was not a car but a saucepan, that my drivers drove like dummies, and that if I went on as I was doing, it wouldn't last long. "When a car loses one of its wheels," he said (this is what had just happened to mine), "it's ready for the scrap-heap, and so is its driver." Thus Müller. Since he was going to Würzburg to buy a rotary press, Müller suggested I should come with him. He arrived at our rendezvous very oddly attired, and his knickerbockers were only a detail in this rig-out. When he told me he would himself drive his car, my first reaction was to inform him that I wouldn't come with him. "Get in," he told me, "and you'll learn what it is to drive a car." I must honestly confess that the journey was a revelation to me. Unlike most people, I'm always ready to learn. The car itself, first of all, was a sixteen-horse Benz, and it was in absolutely impeccable condition. By comparison, I saw at once all the faults of my own car. And I must add that Müller drove wonderfully well.