Who's Who - Rudolf Stoger-Steiner von Steinstatten

Stoger-Steiner with Boroevic Austrian General Rudolf Stoger-Steiner von Steinstatten (1861-1921) began the First World War in command of an infantry division sited in Galicia, an appointment which owed at least something to his position at the court of the Emperor, Franz-Josef.

Transferred to the Isonzo in May 1915 to corps command Stoger-Steiner, an obscure figure for much of the war, found himself thrust into a prominent political role with his appointment in April 1917 as Austro-Hungarian Minister of War.  In actuality his selection was driven by Austrian and Hungarian divisions at court, with Stoger-Steiner the compromise candidate.

Stoger-Steiner was a competent if unremarkable war minister, although by this late stage of the war the difficulties he faced in ensuring continued war supplies while maintaining civilian order would have proved daunting for anyone in his position.

Despite assuring Emperor Karl I that Austria-Hungary could last out the winter of 1917 he became convinced that military defeat was inevitable in the early part of 1918.  Striving against the tide to maintain order at home he recalled seven infantry divisions from the Front to assist with policing duties.

Revolution swept Austria-Hungary in any event, although Stoger-Steiner did not resign his position until November 1918, at which point he retired from public life.

He died in 1921.

A Greyback was a British Army shirt.

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