General Walter Nicolai (August 1, 1873 – May 4, 1947) was the first senior IC (intelligence) officer in the Imperial German Army. He came to run the German military intelligence service, Abteilung IIIb, and became an important pro-war propagandist in Germany during the First World War of 1914-1918. According to Höhne and Zolling, he helped to found the German Fatherland Party
Nicolai was the son of a Prussian Army captain and a farmer's daughter in Braunschweig. In 1893, he selected a military career. He studied from 1901 to 1904 at the War Academy in Berlin. Shortly before his appointment as Chief of the Intelligence Service of the German High Command, he is known to have taken trips to Russian Empire and spoke fluent Russian. Nicolai was a German nationalist and a monarchist, but otherwise considered to be apolitical.
In 1906, Nicolai began his career in Abteilung IIIb and took command over the East Prussian news station in Königsberg. He buil