A penetrating study of the German army's military campaigns, relations with the Nazi regime, and complicity in Nazi crimes across occupied Europe For decades after 1945, it was generally believed that the German army, professional and morally decent, had largely stood apart from the SS, Gestapo, and other corps of the Nazi machine. Ben Shepherd draws on a wealth of primary sources and recent scholarship to convey a much darker, more complex picture. For the first time, the German army is examined throughout the Second World War, across all combat theaters and occupied regions, and from multiple perspectives: its battle performance, social composition, relationship with the Nazi state, and involvement in war crimes and military occupation. This was a true people's army, drawn from across German society and reflecting that society as it existed under the Nazis. Without the army and its conquests abroad, Shepherd explains, the Nazi regime could not have perpetrated its crimes against Jews, prisoners of war, and civilians in occupied countries. The author examines how the army was complicit in these crimes and why some soldiers, units, and higher commands were more complicit than others. Shepherd also reveals the reasons for the army's early battlefield successes and its mounting defeats up to 1945, the latter due not only to Allied superiority and Hitler's mismanagement as commander-in-chief, but also to the failings--moral, political, economic, strategic, and operational--of the army's own leadership.
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Historical account of the ideological motives that permeated both the German army and the nation during World War II
"The explanatory text explores the cultural and historical context of the images, uniting them into a cohesive and riveting narrative. Together, these photographs create a time capsule of indelible images that capture the faces of the individuals who fell under the sway of the swatstika as well as those who suffered under its onslaught on humanity"--Provided by publisher.
In this memoir, the author intersperses his own WW II experiences as a young boy in Germany with the story of the war’s history— on both Eastern and Western battle fronts. Young Reinhold, born in 1937, was raised in Gottwollshausen, a small village in southern Germany, during the course of this war. After the Nazis drafted his father into the German army and sent him to the Russian front, Reinhold and his family—mother and two older brothers—experience the terror of Hitler and his Nazi regime, along with day and night air raids and bombings, followed by artillery attacks by the advancing Allied troops. In lieu of a normal, carefree childhood, Reinhold experiences the angst of a raging war right at his doorstep. Reinhold’s father survives the hardships of the war in Russia for three years, only to meet with a tragic end in the last week of the war. This memoir highlights the brutal and sadistic practices of Hitler and his Nazis.
Understand the rise of a dangerous ideology. There is renewed interest in the Nazi Party that ruled Germany as a fascist state from 1933 to 1945 under the leadership of Adolf Hitler. However, the events that led to the rise of Nazism-and the near victory of the Axis Powers in World War II-date back to the economics and politics of 1860s Europe. From fascinating facts on the iron-fisted rulers who forged a new German empire to clear analysis of the Third Reich's psychological, political, and military underpinnings, learn all there is to know about the rise and fall of Hitler's Nazi Germany, including: + The unification of Germany and the formation of the first empire under Prussian chancellor Otto von Bismarck. + How the Versailles Treaty's disarmament of Germany after World War I failed to ensure peace. + Adolf Hitler's evolution from an imprisoned revolutionary to Nazi dictator. + The Nazi reign over Germany and occupied countries-including the military strategies of World War II. + The German military officers who plotted to assassinate Hitler. + The justifications behind the Nuremberg trials.
When the Third Reich collapsed, 70 million Germans were left bewildered and terrified, their leaders dead or incarcerated; the victors saw fully for the first time the unbearable legacy of death, atrocity, and destruction left by the Nazis. Here is the view from Hitler' s bunker, where news came of his troops surrendering on every front. An extraordinary story of ruin, retribution, sometimes courage and occasional suicide...and the ultimate rise from these ashes of a powerful, democratic republic.
- Author : Society of Fellows Harvard University Omer Bartov Junior Fellow
- Publisher : Oxford University Press, USA
- Release Date : 1991-07-04
- Genre : History
- Pages : 256
- ISBN : 9780198023340
As the Cold War followed on the heels of the Second World War, as the Nuremburg Trials faded in the shadow of the Iron Curtain, both the Germans and te West were quick to accpt the idea that Hitler's army had been no SS, no Gestapo, that it was a professional force little touched by Nazi politics. But in this compelling account Omer Bartov reveals a very different history, as he probes the experience of the average soldier to show just how thoroughly Nazi ideology permeated the army. In Hitler's Army, Bartov focuses on the titanic struggle between Germany and the Soviet Union--where the vast majority of German troops fought--to show how the savagery of war reshaped the army in Hitler's image. Both brutalized and brutalizing, these soldiers needed to see their bitter sacrifices as noble patriotism and to justify their own atrocities by seeing their victims as subhuman. In the unprecedented ferocity and catastrophic losses of the Eastrn front, he writes, soldiers embraced the idea that the war was a defense of civilization against Jewish/Bolshevik barbarism, a war of racial survival to be waged at all costs. Bartov descibes the incredible scale and destruction of the invasion of Russia in horrific detail. Even in the first months--often depicted as a time of easy victories--undermanned and ill-equipped Geman units were stretched to the breaking point by vast distances and bitter Soviet resistance. Facing scarce supplies and enormous casualties, the average soldier sank to ta a primitive level of existence, re-experiencing the trench warfare of World War I under the most extreme weather conditions imaginable; the fighting itself was savage, and massacrs of prisoners were common. Troops looted food and supplies from civilians with wild abandon; they mercilessly wiped out villages suspected of aiding partisans. Incredible losses led to recruits being thrown together in units that once had been filled with men from the same communities, making Nazi ideology even more impo
“Insightful commentary on the tangible relics of the Third Reich . . . Tells the history of the Nazi regime from a fascinating new perspective” (Military History Monthly). Hitler’s Third Reich is covered in countless books and films: no conflict of the twentieth century has prompted such interest or such a body of literature. Here, two leading World War II historians offer a new way to look at the subject—through objects that come from this time and place, much like a museum exhibit. The photographs gathered by the authors represent subjects including the methamphetamine known as Pervitin, Hitler’s Mercedes, jackboots, concentration camp badges, a 1932 election poster, Wehrmacht mittens, Hitler’s grooming kit, the Tiger Tank, fragments of flak, and, of course, the swastika and Mein Kampf, among dozens more—along with informative text that sheds new light on both the objects themselves and the history they represent.
The final book in his acclaimed trilogy on the rise and fall of Nazi Germany, Richard J. Evans's The Third Reich at War: How the Nazis Led Germany from Conquest to Disaster shows how Germany rushed headlong into destroying itself, shattering an entire continent. In 1939 Hitler mobilized Germany into all-out war. Richard Evans's astonishing, acclaimed history conjures up a whole society plunged into conflict - from generals and front-line soldiers to Hitler Youth activists and middle-class housewives - tracing events from the invasion of Poland and the Battle of Stalingrad to Hitler's plans for genocide and his eventual suicide. 'Masterly ... will surely be the standard history for many years to come ... This is a warning for the future, as much as a judgement on the past' ;Richard Overy, Daily Telegraph 'We all know how the story ends ... but Richard Evans brings it masterfully home ... magnificent';Peter Preston, Observer 'A chilling, brilliant read' Dominic Sandbrook, Sunday Telegraph Books of the Year 'It is hard to do justice to the humanity and scholarly range of The Third Reich at War ... triumphant ... a masterful historical narrative and the most comprehensive account of Nazi Germany' Nicholas Stargardt, The Times Literary Supplement 'It gives the reader persuasive answers to questions asked for so long, that will continue to be asked, about this most violent and inexplicable of regimes' Mark Mazower, Guardian Sir Richard J. Evans is Professor of Modern History at Cambridge University. His previous books include In Defence of History, Telling Lies about Hitler and the companions to this title, The Coming of the Third Reich and The Third Reich in Power.
Warfare and the Third Reich is divided into three parts, which consider separately the German land and naval forces, the generals, and the Luftwaffe. Each is examined with the aim of explaining why it ultimately failed. In a departure from many World War II books, Chant examines the economic measures, propaganda, coercion, technology and political skills which also formed an important part of the Third Reich's arsenal.
This book is a profound reexamination of the role of the German army, the Wehrmacht, in World War II. Until very recently, the standard story avowed that the ordinary German soldier in World War II was a good soldier, distinct from Hitler's rapacious SS troops, and not an accomplice to the massacres of civilians. Wolfram Wette, a preeminent German military historian, explodes the myth of a "clean" Wehrmacht with devastating clarity. This book reveals the Wehrmacht's long-standing prejudices against Jews, Slavs, and Bolsheviks, beliefs that predated the prophecies of "Mein Kampf" and the paranoia of National Socialism. Though the sixteen-million-member German army is often portrayed as a victim of Nazi mania, we come to see that from 1941 to 1944 these soldiers were thoroughly involved in the horrific cleansing of Russia and Eastern Europe. Wette compellingly documents Germany's long-term preparation of its army for a race war deemed necessary to safeguard the country's future; World War II was merely the fulfillment of these plans, on a previously unimaginable scale. This sober indictment of millions of German soldiers reaches beyond the Wehrmacht's complicity to examine how German academics and ordinary citizens avoided confronting this difficult truth at war's end. Wette shows how atrocities against Jews and others were concealed and sanitized, and history rewritten. Only recently has the German public undertaken a reevaluation of this respected national institution--a painful but necessary process if we are to truly comprehend how the Holocaust was carried out and how we have come to understand it.
What was it like to grow up German during Hitler’s Third Reich? In this extraordinary book, Frederic C. Tubach returns to the country of his roots to interview average Germans who, like him, came of age between 1933 and 1945. Tubach sets their recollections and his own memories into a broad historical overview of Nazism—a regime that shaped minds through persuasion (meetings, Nazi Party rallies, the 1936 Olympics, the new mass media of radio and film) and coercion (violence and political suppression). The voices of this long-overlooked population—ordinary people who were neither victims nor perpetrators—reveal the rich complexity of their attitudes and emotions. The book also presents selections from approximately 80,000 unpublished letters (now archived in Berlin) written during the war by civilians and German soldiers. Tubach powerfully provides new insights into Germany’s most tragic years, offering a nuanced response to the abiding question of how a nation made the quantum leap from anti-Semitism to systematic genocide.
How was it an entire cultured nation allowed their children to be raised by a political party with an ideology of hate? Stories of the fanatical bravery of the young men and children of the Reich on the battlefields of Europe are abundant. One could even admire the courage of the Volkssturm and the Hitler Youth as they battled relentlessly against the Allied and Soviet armies. But when one looks at it in the cold light of day, one cannot fail to be overwhelmed with the senseless loss of life. Millions butchered for an old man’s nightmare vision of a world he hated and wanted to see burn. His failure to face the facts, combined with the Allies demand for unconditional surrender resulted in an entire generation consumed to the abyss. The Wehrmacht, the Hitler Youth, the Volkssturm and the children were all in the end just gristle for the Reich’s mill. This book covers the whole story of a generation of young Germans, from the rebirth of a Nation to its consignment to the abyss and their role in this calamity.
- Author : Brian Matthews
- Publisher : Unknown
- Release Date : 2002
- Genre : Band musicians
- Pages : 320
- ISBN : STANFORD:36105026138060
- Author : Otis C. Mitchell
- Publisher : McFarland
- Release Date : 2008-10-01
- Genre : History
- Pages : 199
- ISBN : 9780786477296
"Hitler was Nazi Germany and Nazi Germany was Hitler." Though true to the extent that Hitler's personality, leadership, and ideological convictions played a massive role in shaping the nature of government and life during the Third Reich, this popular view has led many writers since the end of World War II to overlook important aspects of Nazism while centering attention solely on Hitler's contributions to the Nazi Party. This book seeks to fill a significant gap in the literature by concentrating particularly on the Nazi Party and its growth during the years of the Weimar Republic, examining the paramilitary presence in Germany and Bavaria after World War I. Most of the book describes the development of the Nazi Storm Detachment (Sturmabteilung, or SA) before and after the failed Beer Hall Putsch in 1923. By the time Hitler came to power in January 1933, there were perhaps as many as 400,000 of these brown-shirted men, often self-styled revolutionaries, creating violence on a daily basis and destroying the underpinnings of the Weimar Republic. The book features several photographs captured from the Nazi Party's Central Publishing Facility in Munich and passed to the author in the late 1950s.
Originally published in hardback only in 1987, Michael Freeman's valuable guide to the history of Nazi Germany now returns to print in a substantially revised Second Edition. Dealing with all aspects of the Nazi regime, it is far more than just an atlas: the integration of the maps themselves with charts and other visually-displayed data, and an extensive and authoritative commentary, makes this a book to read as well as to refer to.
In January 1943, President Roosevelt, with Churchill alongside him, proclaimed that the Allies would fight until Germany surrendered unconditionally. He explained that this did not mean the end of the German people but did mean the total destruction of Nazism. Despite the overwhelming superiority of the Allied armed forces, Hitler's "Third Reich" fought on for more than two years, its towns and villages defended in the end partly by old men and young boys of the Volkssturm. With defeat imminent, efforts were even made to prolong resistance to the Allies by forming so-called Werwolf units to conduct guerilla warfare. This book charts the military defeat of Germany in 1944 and 1945, and goes on to explore how the Allies tried after the German surrender to destroy Nazism and all it stood for .It highlights the appalling conditions in Germany after the war, and details how the Allies abolished the Nazi Party and sought to punish its leaders at Nuremberg. It also examines the wider process of denazification—the removal of former Nazis from public life, and the elimination of Nazi ideas and influences from education, the media, and the arts. Inevitably this caused much friction between wartime Allies and the now occupied German population, a situation made worse by cold, hunger, psychological trauma, and the desperate resistance of remaining Nazi fanatics. This book balances the viewpoints of occupiers and Germans in its analysis of how the Third Reich was defeated and its social system dismantled. This book presents the first major account of how Germany was dealt with at the end of World War II by the Allies. Policy lessons learned here have been applied by the Americans in Iraq.
On the murderous road to "racial purity" Hitler encountered unexpected detours, largely due to his own crazed views and inconsistent policies regarding Jewish identity. After centuries of Jewish assimilation and intermarriage in German society, he discovered that eliminating Jews from the rest of the population was more difficult than he'd anticipated. As Bryan Rigg shows in this provocative new study, nowhere was that heinous process more fraught with contradiction and confusion than in the German military. Contrary to conventional views, Rigg reveals that a startlingly large number of German military men were classified by the Nazis as Jews or "partial-Jews" (Mischlinge), in the wake of racial laws first enacted in the mid-1930s. Rigg demonstrates that the actual number was much higher than previously thought-perhaps as many as 150,000 men, including decorated veterans and high-ranking officers, even generals and admirals. As Rigg fully documents for the first time, a great many of these men did not even consider themselves Jewish and had embraced the military as a way of life and as devoted patriots eager to serve a revived German nation. In turn, they had been embraced by the Wehrmacht, which prior to Hitler had given little thought to the "race" of these men but which was now forced to look deeply into the ancestry of its soldiers. The process of investigation and removal, however, was marred by a highly inconsistent application of Nazi law. Numerous "exemptions" were made in order to allow a soldier to stay within the ranks or to spare a soldier's parent, spouse, or other relative from incarceration or far worse. (Hitler's own signature can be found on many of these "exemption" orders.) But as the war dragged on, Nazi politics came to trump military logic, even in the face of the Wehrmacht's growing manpower needs, closing legal loopholes and making it virtually impossible for these soldiers to escape the fate of millions of other victims of the Third Reich. B
When discussing the German war crimes of the Second World War, modern histories have focused on the Holocaust. While the Final Solution was a unique and unparalleled horror, German atrocities did not end there. The Nazis terrorized their own citizens, tortured and murdered POWs, and carried out countless executions throughout occupied Europe. Lord Russell of Liverpool was part of the legal team that brought Nazi war criminals to justice, and from this first-hand position, he published the sensational, bestselling The Scourge of the Swastika in 1954. Liverpool shows that the actions of the Third Reich, including the Holocaust, were illegal, not merely immoral.