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In the Fire of the Eastern Front: The Experiences of a Dutch Waffen-SS Volunteer, 1941-45 (Stackpole Military History Series) [Kindle Edition]

Hendrick C. Verton
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

  • Extraordinary story of a Dutch volunteer in the Waffen-SS
  • Vivid details on SS training and combat on the Eastern Front
  • Account of the little-known siege of Breslau in early 1945

    Dutch SS accounts are very rare, particularly ones that describe recruiting, training, and frontline service as completely and colorfully as In the Fire of the Eastern Front. Hendrick C. Verton volunteered for the Waffen-SS in early 1941 and fought on the Eastern Front until the end of the war as a member of the 5th SS Panzer Division and SS Regiment Besslein.



  • Editorial Reviews

    About the Author

    Hendrick C. Verton lives in the Netherlands.

    Product Details

    • File Size: 2044 KB
    • Print Length: 290 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0811735893
    • Publisher: Stackpole Books (March 1, 2013)
    • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B00BZBJ91O
    • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #727,371 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    3.4 out of 5 stars
    (16)
    3.4 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Experiences of a Dutch volunteer in the SS June 6, 2010
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    First I'll tell you what this book is not. Its not a graphic account of all the battle action of troop movements or objectives captured seen on the Eastern Front by the author. It is a highly personal, sometimes emotional and biased account of the few joys and the many horrors of sights and experiences during and after battle to the author, his comrades and civilians that were caught up in the war. But its also more than the anecdotal experience for it appears the author after surviving the war, studied the war for decades, gaining an understanding far greater than his own personal experience and has included brief summaries and background information that is sometimes overlooked by other historians. The author also quotes from Charles Sydnor, David Irving, Paul Carell, Douglas MacArthur and other European authors I'm not familiar with to support some of his comments.
    One of the most intriguing comments dealt with the opening week of Operation Barbarossa when it was discovered the great number of Russian troops, planes, tanks and supply warehouses so close to the border that both German soldier and officer felt sure Russia was preparing their own invasion of Europe. He confirms his thoughts by quoting the Russian defector, Viktor Suvorov.

    The author begins his story by telling a little about himself, his family and his family's heritage. He moves on to discuss the relationship of Holland and Germany after WWI, the despair of Germany experienced at the hands of the Allies, the rise of Hitler and his successful attempt to pull Germany up from the depths of economic depression which also benefited Holland. He explains how many Dutch were proud of Hitler to succeed against the determined efforts of France and England to keep Germany destitute.
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    8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars In The Fire of the Eastern Front September 11, 2011
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    I am an American. Yet, personal stories of the Eastern front in the German-Russian theater hold a fascination like no other. Nothing is as disappointing as a bad book on the Eastern Front and nothing quite so rewarding and engaging as a good book, which becomes a good friend. In The Fire of The Eastern Front is that kind of good book. The author, Verton, was there. In his book, he takes us there, too. Whatever the "objective" truth may be today, may have been at the time, these non-German young men from other countries who joined the German armed forces appear, to all intents and purposes, to have seen themselves as invited to take part in a great crusade to save Europe from communism. It's a fascinating story of life that this man, this good soldier and good writer, shares with us. I am the richer for his having done so. I believe all "Eastern Front readers" will feel the same.
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    The simple fact that the Netherlands provided more volunteers to the Waffen SS and Wehrmacht than any other country besides Germany is worthy of repeating. This narrative is about a young Dutch man, and his older brother, who succumbed to the propaganda of the NSB and the Waffen SS. Throughout the book Hendrick Verton repeats the deeply ingrained anti-Bolshevik propaganda that delivered him to the front as combatant against the USSR. It is insightful and interesting to see the experience through the eyes of a young man who firmly believes he is doing the right thing. There is precious little realization about the oppression that the civilians in the Netherlands were suffering at the hands of his Nazi idols, nor of the fact that thousands of foreign volunteers, Dutchmen especially, lost their lives fighting for the Greater Reich, with little or nothing to show for it.
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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent memoir May 7, 2013
    Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
    I really enjoyed this book as the author has a pleasant writing style and an incredible story to share. The book is wonderfully detailed as he describes the excitement, brutality and unfairness of his time as a soldier and later as a displaced person. I don't feel he is an apologist but rather just one of thousands of non-Germans who felt obliged to fight against the Bolsheviks. I found Verton to be an ultimately likable person who did his best at whatever task lay before him. His story is quite inspirational when viewed in an objective light.
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    4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting account July 29, 2013
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    I found this an interesting account, especially the Post-War era. I did find it rather odd that the author left a gap in his story from Spring 1942 until late 1944. There is by the appearance by the braid on his collar, and earlier the two shoulder board loops of an Offizieranwaerter (officer candidate) which leans toward the fact he was in training, and not sent to the Kursk salient in mid 1943. He did not spent much time in combat until 1945, judging by only being awarded the Black Wound Badge, Infantry Assault Badge, EK II, and the Frozen Meat Order. I did find the book worth reading. His paternal side of the family was French, so he was not entirely Dutch as the title may suggest.
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    5.0 out of 5 stars A Dutch Waffen SS Experience on the Eastern Front September 4, 2013
    Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
    This book gives an in depth account of the experiences of a Waffen SS soldiers fighting on the Russian front. A Dutch volunteer who joined the Waffen SS for ideological reasons, mainly to stop communism from moving into Europe. The author will tell you a story of endless battles that he participated in and most of his fellow volunteers from Holland died in. You will find it an excellent book if you have an interest in the war in Russia. Kurt Seraphine
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    2.0 out of 5 stars I would not recommend it.
    The book is well witten and well depicts the horrors of war, however the author wants us believe the SS were a bunch of good boys who went to Russia to help little old ladies cross... Read more
    Published 3 months ago by Manuel Carta
    4.0 out of 5 stars Good series
    Lot's of facts and well writen, these poor guy's really had it tough. Hat's off to a bunch of very well trained solders....
    Published 9 months ago by Jim Radcliffe
    4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
    An interesting book, although not so much because of its accounts of battle on the Eastern Front (there are relatively few) but for providing the perspective of a non-German... Read more
    Published 13 months ago by Thomas Reiter
    2.0 out of 5 stars A Flawed History
    An otherwise interesting account is marred by the authors attempt to be a historian. Much of the book is the former Waffen SS soldier going through the events leading up to WWII... Read more
    Published 15 months ago by James L
    1.0 out of 5 stars Delusions of a committed hard line Nazi
    I must admit that I have not read all through this book and I probably will not. The bias of the author is sickening, he actually praises the Nazi regime saying that they were... Read more
    Published 18 months ago by Keith Grove
    5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read
    In the Fire of the Eastern Front by Hendrick C. Verton is a memoir of the author as a Dutch Waffen SS volunteer. Read more
    Published 24 months ago by Carl Robinson
    2.0 out of 5 stars A MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENT
    THIS BOOK IS THE FIRST IN THE STACKPOLE MILITARY SERIES THAT WAS A REAL DISAPPOINTMENT. FAR FROM BEING AN ACCOUNT OF WAR ON THE EASTERN FRONT, IT IS A HIGHLY PERSONAL ACCOUNT OF... Read more
    Published on February 12, 2013 by Mark Waywood
    2.0 out of 5 stars Doomed By An Author-Publisher's Non-Aggression Pact
    In The Fire of The Eastern Front, The Experience of a Dutch Waffen-SS Volunteer, 1941-45, Frederick Verton; Stackpole Books (2003)

    I thank Mr. Arp for his review. Read more
    Published on November 13, 2011 by Don Reed
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