- Men are basically smart or dumb and lazy or ambitious. The dumb and ambitious ones are dangerous and I get rid of them. The dumb and lazy ones I give mundane duties. The smart ambitious ones I put on my staff. The smart and lazy ones I make my commanders.
- Don't fight a battle if you don't gain anything by winning.
- This is more often attributed to George S. Patton.
- Give me 2 Maori Battalions and I will conquer the world.
- Said by Rommel to Adolf Hitler. Battle of Tobruk
- I would be rather more happy had he given me one more division.
- Comment after Hitler made him a Field Marshal
- In the absence of orders, go find something and kill it.
- Sweat saves blood, blood saves lives, and brains save both.
- I would rather be the hammer than the anvil.
- The future battle on the ground will be preceded by battle in the air. This will determine which of the contestants has to suffer operational and tactical disadvantages and be forced throughout the battle into adopting compromise solutions.
- There are always times where the place of a commander isn't back with his Major State, but onward with his troops.
- For the Allies and Germany it will be the longest day. The longest day.
- Referred to D-Day in Normandy.
- I didn't die nor win.
- Referred to the order "either win or die trying!" of Hitler during the retreat of the campaigning in North Africa.
- For me, soldiers are all equal. Those black people wore your same uniform, fought on your side, and so you will be in the same jail.
- Said to a captured South African white officer that asked to be put in a different jail from the one with black soldiers.
- Dialogue with Italian general Barbasetti at Capuzzo. Barbassetti: "it was very painful the sacrifice of the X Army Corps abandoned in the desert"; Rommel: "is this a critic? no disapproval words have come from the Fuhrer"; Barbassetti: "I watched the endless column of retreating companies, German drivers rejected to pick up on their trucks the Italians". After these words Rommel silenced.
- If I had to take hell, I would use the Australians to take it and the New Zealanders to hold it.
- Said about the Australians and New Zealanders after facing an Australian-New Zealand infantry division in North Africa
- If I'd had one division of Maori, I would have taken the canal in a week. If I'd had three, I'd have taken Baghdad.