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Hitler's Pope: The Secret History of Pius XII Paperback – April 29, 2008
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Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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1. Golda Meir, the former prime minister of Israel, said upon Pius XII's death that " During the ten years of Nazi terror, when our people passed through the horrors of martyrdom, the Pope raised his voice to condemn the persecutors and to commiserate with their victims."
2. Elio Toaff, the Chief Rabbi of Rome during the Nazi terror, said, "More than anyone else, we have had the opportunity to appreciate the great kindness, filled with compassion and magnanimity, that the Pope displayed during the terrible years of persecution and terror."
3. Nahum Goldmann, president of the World Jewish Congress, said that, "with special gratitude we remember all he has done for the persecuted Jews during one of the darkest periods in their entire history."
4.Read more ›
A few quotes: "When fearful martyrdom came to our people in the decade of Nazi terror, the voice of the Pope was raised for it's victims." Golda Meir
"He (Pope Pius)is the only ruler left on the continent of Europe who dares raise his voice at all." New York Times editorial Dec. 25, 1942
"Only the Church stood squarely across the path of Hitler's campaign." Albert Einstein (Time magazine 1944)
It is a "regretable irony that the one person in all of occupied Europe who did more than anyone else to halt the dreadful crime...is today made the scapegoat for the failures of others." Jeno Levai (Jewish historian specializing in the Holocaust in Hungary)
"The Catholic Church under Pius XII was instumental in saving the lives of as many as 860,000 Jews" Pinchas Lapide (Israeli diplomat)
"Those who long for the realization of collegiality in the Catholic church may also come to accept, in the light of this narrative ... that papal autocracy, carried to the extreme, can only demoralize and weaken Christian communities. ... It has been the urgent thesis of this book, however, that when the papacy waxes strong at the expense of the people of God, the Catholic Church declines in moral and spiritual influence to the detriment of us all."
I have no illusions about the power of the Papacy to inflict harm needlessly and unconsciously on the Christian church. I have no doubt that past popes have been responsible for death and destruction to further their own political power. However, I do not think Cornwell presents a credible case to damn Pius XII. He merely presents an indictment of the papacy as a strong, reactionary, unresponsive office badly in need of reform from his own perspective.
To do this, he invokes the name of Hitler in the title, conjuring up all the evil of history associated with that name, hoping some will rub off on the pope. He then calls him by his Christian name, stripping him of title and making him into a faceless bureaucrat. Finally, he associates him with every evil of the era, from fascism to McCarthyism, hoping for some revolt against John Paul II at the end, in a chapter which seemed hastily added on and beside the point until you arrive at page 370, the next to last page.
This is history as polemic, and not necessarily well done either. The section dealing with Pius' death is, frankly, dispicable. Because of the nature of the work as revealed at the end, this book calls all of its conclusions into suspicion.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you enjoy sensationalist claims, read it. However if you are interested in real history, do not waste your time and money.Published 2 months ago by Mara R
The synopsis of the book doesn't quite cover the lack of bias of the historical research behind its writing. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Andy Ishter
Lies, lies and lies...all framed by former KGB strategists and stupid communists like Cornwell trying to attack religion. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Eraldo P.
Although Cornwell does implicate Pacelli (Pius XII) in the Holocaust, he is otherwise infatuated with this Pope and cannot see how strongly this cleric opposed democracy and... Read morePublished 6 months ago by stonee
Thomas Cromwell's book might as well be labeled fiction, since he ignored vast evidence to the contrary of what he purports in his book, Hitler's Pope. Read morePublished 7 months ago by C.J.C
The author provides clear evidence of the war crimes of Pope Pius XII to include that of the murderous Croatian horrific killings of the Serbian Orthodox. Read morePublished 8 months ago by K. MCBRIDE