Their haunting words chronicle the horror and disbelief of European Jewry as it slid down through discrimination and persecution to deportation and death. The writings of diarists like Kaplan, committed to paper in conditions of terrible adversity, provide much of the human dimension of this remarkable book: they did not write in vain. Nor do these arguments do justice to the virulent language of hatred used by the Nazi leaders, Hitler and Goebbels in particular, when they spoke, as they did almost unceasingly, of the Jews.
It was the Jews, he believed, who had fomented the war launched in reality by himself in September It was at this point that he escalated his persecution of the Jews first to deportation to the East and then to mass murder and total extermination. The Jews, he declared, were driven by their innate racial instinct to subvert civilization everywhere. The diaries and letters cited in the book show graphically how even as the prospective Jewish victims began to fear the worst, they continued to hope for the best; only a small minority found their way into hiding or resistance.
As for the mass of non-Jewish citizens in Germany and other parts of Europe, indifference was the commonest reaction. Police and other state officials in most occupied countries cooperated willingly in the roundups and deportations; in some parts of Europe, notably Poland, Romania and Croatia, native anti-Semitism made its own brutal contribution to the genocide.
In Bulgaria and Slovakia, popular outrage at the genocide forced governments initially willing to collaborate to change their stance. Leaders of the Roman Catholic Church in a number of countries played a part in articulating such feelings, and individual priests in Germany and elsewhere sometimes paid for their courageous opposition with their lives. In some areas — particularly Croatia — nationalist clergymen egged on the murder squads with their own brand of religiously inspired anti-Semitism.
View all New York Times newsletters. This has the disadvantage of breaking up many of the narratives, so that, for example, if one wants to follow what happened in the Netherlands, or in Romania, or even in Germany itself, one has to search through several different chapters to piece the story together. Broszat, who had spent much of his career compiling or overseeing expert witness reports in German war crimes prosecutions and had a vested interest in preserving the appearance of neutrality, disagreed.
The downside of this is that the experiences of the perpetrators are presented perhaps less fully than they might have been. Their testimony is generally used to describe the conditions they created rather than with the obvious exception of Hitler himself to chart their personal beliefs, motives or impressions. The attitudes and behavior of the German people also remain unexplained, and are presented in a sweeping and undifferentiated way that does scant justice to the nuances and complexities that recent historical work has uncovered.
Comparisons with these other victims would have made it evident that the Jews occupied a special place in the exterminatory mentality of the Nazis; they were perceived not as a regional obstacle but as a global threat, not as inferior beings like insects but as powerful enemies, whose very existence anywhere was a terrible danger to the future of the German race.
Still, to have broadened the focus too much would have made this already very lengthy and complex book almost unmanageable. He has written a masterpiece that will endure.
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The Holocaust - Wikipedia
Harper Perennial, Printed Pages: 0. HarperCollins, Harper Perennial. The book describes and interprets the history of the persecution and murder of the Jews throughout occupied Europe. Harper Collins, New York, First Edition. Fine Condition.
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Nazi Germany and The Jews
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A great historian crowns a lifetime of thought and research by answering a question that has haunted us for more than 50 years: How did one of the most industrially and culturally advanced nations in the world embark on and continue along the path leading to one of the most enormous criminal enterprises in history, the extermination of Europe's Jews?
Quantity Available: 1. Shipped Weight: Under 1 kilogram. Pictures of this item not already displayed here available upon request. Inventory No: No International ShippingGood condition. Used books doesn't include any access code, CD or other supplements. For returns always contact us. Saul Friedlander's historical masterpiece is perhaps the richest examination of the Holocaust yet written, and, crucially, one that never loses sight of.
New York: HarperCollins, A few page corners creased; a few pages have underlining. Dj extremities lightly rubbed; sticker remnants bottom spine Dj.
Endnotes; biblio. Bookseller's stickers to front and back of cover. Seller: Addyman Books. Used - Very Good. HarperCollins Publishers, March Tightly bound. Spine not compromised.