You have suggested there is a
determined attempt hereto blacken the name of Gunther Lutjens
However nothing could be further from the truth. There has been over the years a lot of effort put into establishing a degree of seperation between the men of the Kriegsmarine and Nazi control and influence which may or may nor reflect reality depending on individual circumstances. Some have been so appalled that a movie scriptwriter put the words "Remember you are Nazis!" in the mouth of Admiral Lutjens, that they are determined to expunge any suggestion that he was ever, even for a moment, a willing and enthusiastic instrument of the regime.
I am more interested in exploring the complexity of the individual, based on background, disposition and training, and tested on the mission which would prove ultimately fatal. Far from being an "easy mark", Lutjens was obviously a very complex character and Tommy 303's summing up seems very fair, based as it seems to be on the Baron's impressions, who at least sailed with him unlike Kennedy and Ballard who couldn't and must report second hand. We have other sources like the British interrogation of the survivors http://www.kbismarck.com/archives/survivor-reports.pdf
and of course, there is the matter of why his nickname, "Schwartzteufel" ?
A perfectory search on the Interweb promotes the "never a Nazi salute" myth and yet we have all seen his farewell to the departing Fuhrer's back as he left the Tirpitz.
I think is overstating matters. By late 1934 Hitler was Fuhrer and in control and the political environment was different from that prevailing a year or so before.
How much worse would things need to be to create
the overheated, highly charged political environment
before Lutjens took command of Karlsruhe, SS thugs acting on Government orders carried out a slaughter of between 77 and 1000 individuals including Kurt Von Schleicher,the former Chancellor, his wife and even a luckless music critic with a coincidental name. Hitler's speech a few days later
In this hour I was responsible for the fate of the German people, and thereby I became the supreme judge of the German people. I gave the order to shoot the ringleaders in this treason, and I further gave the order to cauterise down to the raw flesh the ulcers of this poisoning of the wells in our domestic life. Let the nation know that its existence—which depends on its internal order and security—cannot be threatened with impunity by anyone! And let it be known for all time to come that if anyone raises his hand to strike the State, then certain death is his lot.
There is no pretence of responsible government in this, no indictment, no trial, these are the actions of mafia style gangsters, proudly admitted and justified only by further menaces. Viewed with incomprehension and horror by nations around the world. Within days the entire military, including Raeder, completes its prostitution by swearing its oath to the bloody tyrant, sealing Germany's fate. Many authorities consider Raeder for the Navy, von Fritsch for the Army and Von Blomberg had sold themselves to the Fuhrer aboard Deutschland as early as April 1933, when he promised he would keep them out of the clutches of the SA if they would rubber stamp his actions, whatever they might be. Roehm and his henchmen were exterminated the following year, so Raeder and the others had to deliver the goods. That Raeder and the Navy had equal status to the Army in Nazi plans is confirmed
Long before he was promoted to General-Admiral in 1936, he had become a member of the secret Reich Defense Council, joining it when it was founded, on 4 April 1933. Thus, at an early date, he was involved, both militarily and politically, in the Nazi conspiracy.
This is the Germany from which Lutjens sailed in Karlsruhe: so when Erich Topp talked of being an ambassador, the important word is the short one- "New" in New Germany, Nazi Germany. Swastikas on the lunch table during Karlsruhe's visit to San Diego/Los Angeles 26/04/33. (I can't attach the photo and i've lost the URL) Nazi salutes at The Alamo and in Vancouver. And if we actually search for information about Lutjens early career, what more might we understand about his later actions? No blackening, but no whitewash either, just the same level of genuine research as some reserve for projectile striking angles and armour penetration.
All the best