|Print List Price:||$8.99|
Save $8.00 (89%)
Hitler on Trial: Alan Cranston, Mein Kampf, and The Court of World Opinion Kindle Edition
Kindle Feature Spotlight
Try Kindle Countdown Deals
Explore limited-time discounted eBooks. Learn more.
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Customers who bought this item also bought
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
Showing 1-6 of 53 reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
This side by side look at Cranston's efforts to wake up America to the truth and basis of Hitler's actions and motivations. At the core of the dilemma is the distinct difference of what was actually written by Hitler in Mein Kamph (and later acted out by him on the world stage), compared to the world's early view of him through the altered and abridged (sanitized) versions of his book.
This is a fascinating look at a fascinating time in world history, and at those particular events that not only changed the world as we knew it, but which would shape the life and career of Senator Alan Cranston.
A fascinating view into what shaped a man into taking decisive action.
The fact that really got my attention is that Hitler was effective sponsored by his nine month incarceration into writing this book - it took him from being penniless and living on state welfare in Austria to being a millionaire whose main income was royalties from his book! It begs the question: Did Mein Kampf advance this spectacular rise, or did his infamous rise to leadership propel the sales of his book?
A short read well worth your time.
In the late 1930’s, Hitler was attempting to cultivate an image in the West as a fatherly leader, simply trying to get Germany back on its feet, while, in actuality, all the while, he and his Nazis were rapidly rebuilding the German war machine and perpetrating atrocities against Jews. In Germany, Hitler made no secret about his intentions, as laid out in his infamous memoir, “Mein Kampf.” But, while the book was published internationally, the translations were expurgated, removing the inflammatory language and making Hitler’s intentions seem far more benign. Alan Cranston, a young journalist who had traveled extensively in Europe, came across a copy of the English translation of “Mein Kampf” and immediately recognized it for the dangerous propaganda piece it was. So, he decided to fight fire with fire, or, in this case, to fight Hitler with his own words. Cranston wrote his own translation of “Mein Kampf” and, with the help of a friend in the publishing business, distributed it widely in pamphlet form in 1939, at least until the U.S. publisher of “Mein Kampf” brought legal proceedings to stop the publication.
I confess that, although I had heard of Alan Cranston (who later served several terms as a United States Senator from California), I was completely unaware of this incident until reading “Hitler on Trial.” I did a quick search for other published material on this subject and was surprised to learn that, although articles about Cranston’s version of “Mein Kampf” appear from time to time, “Hitler on Trial” is apparently the first book of any sort on the subject. Lorraine Tong, a former aide to Cranston, has performed a valuable service in bringing it to the public’s attention some 75 years after the events described. Tong had access to some of the Cranston family’s personal records and was able to work this material into the book to give a more fully rounded picture of young Cranston, as a 20-something journalist (he covered the Berlin Olympics in 1936) on the world stage. She also peppers the book with a number of interesting anecdotes about Cranston, Hitler, and the events taking place in Europe at that time.
Unfortunately, while Tong is to be commended for what she has accomplished here, she is clearly not a historian, and this rather brief book yet padded book (it contains a couple of chapters consisting of tributes paid to Cranston upon his retirement form the Senate and, later, after his death) seems merely like an introduction to the subject. One vital omission is Tong’s failure to point out some of the differences between the two texts. After the trial, Cranston’s publisher was ordered to destroy all copies of his version. Of course, some remain today and are collector’s items, and Tong had access to such a copy. A side-by-side comparison of an illustrative passage or two would have shown just how much Hitler tried to manipulate the facts. It also would have been helpful to get some perspective from those familiar with the case as to just how influential Cranston’s work actually was (some 500,000 copies were distributed in ten days) or might have been if publication hadn't ceased.
But any shortcomings Tong may have as an investigative reporter pale in comparison to the power of the facts themselves as she has relayed them in “Hitler on Trial.” The reach of the Internet ensures that a modern-day Hitler would never be able to perpetrate such a scam for long without today’s versions of Cranston exposing it worldwide. In 1939, however, exposing Hitler required the hard work of a few people like the actual Alan Cranston and his fellow whistleblowers in translating, editing, publishing, marketing, and distributing his book to a public unaware of the real threat posed by Nazi Germany. Regardless of the ease or difficulty of exposing such tyranny, “Hitler on Trial” provides an often fascinating and compelling example of the importance of such work.