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Lives of Hitler's Jewish Soldiers: Untold Tales of Men of Jewish Descent Who Fought for the Third Reich (Modern War Studies (Hardcover)) Hardcover – March 3, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
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"Rigg has done exhaustive research that will force scholars once again to confront the nuances and complexity of life in Nazi Germany. His oral histories not only provide a poignant glimpse at the human stories behind the impersonal facade of Nazi racial laws, but also show just how these individuals--far from passive victims--responded in an effort to shape and influence their own fate. Rigg's evidence reveals the variety of strategies they employed to navigate the ambiguities of the Nazi racial state." -- Stephen G. Fritz
Top Customer Reviews
Rigg reminds the reader that racial Nazi ideology and Nazi officials decided who was Jewish; self-identifications and self-repudiations of Judaism did not. Tens of thousands of Christians of Jewish origin, most of whom didn't feel Jewish, were murdered by the Nazis as Jews. (p. 17). According to the Nuremberg laws, a Jew was anyone who had three or four Jewish grandparents. A half-Jew (1st Degree Mischling) had two Jewish grandparents and a quarter-Jew (2nd Degree Mischling) had one Jewish grandparent. (p. 12). According to the Halakah (rabbinical law), more than half of the 2nd-Degree Mischling were Jews. (p. 13).
Some of the interviewees acknowledge once admiring Hitler, as for the extensive employment opportunities created by his Autobahn program. (p. 79). The interviewees served in the armed forces as German patriots. (e. g., p. 57). Rigg considers the Yiddish term Goy to be derogatory. (p. 14).
While it is true that the majority of the German Jews and Mischlinge interviewed by Rigg escaped persecution by concealing their background or being fortunate to serve under officers that disregarded it, there were also quite a few of them known and spared by top Nazi officials and re-labeled Aryans. Hitler did this with the stroke of a pen. (p. 13). In his Chapter 3, which is on those who received the Deutschblutigkeitserklarung (declaration of German blood), Rigg wrote: "No fewer than twenty-one generals, several admirals, and one field marshal of Jewish descent served with Hitler's consent.Read more ›
The book, which essentially is a sequel to Rigg's first book, Hitler's Jewish Soldiers: The Untold Story Of Nazi Racial Laws And Men Of Jewish Descent In The German Military (Modern War Studies), presents case studies of individuals who had served in Germany's armed forces and analyzes generally, the common experiences, perceptions, and attitudes of the Mischlinge, while delineating many experiences that where exclusive to particular individuals upon which the study focused. The commonalities, however, were fascinating, especially when considered within the context of Hitler's reign of power from 1933, with the Nazis' ascension, to 1945, when Hitler put a bullet in his brain.Read more ›
The only part of the book that I didn't like was the last chapter of Mischling soldiers that helped other jews. It just seemed to be an introduction of Rigg's last book, Rescued From The Reich. It's not poorly written per se just a chapter that actually had only two examples of the Mischling soldiers helping two individuals. The first story just seem to be there to justify the second story, which Rigg's wrote in his thrid volume so you want to get the book. I think I will pass on his last book since I now know the story from this volume.
Overall it was well written and obviously well researched and certainly worth getting if you're interested in the holocaust or WWII.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book's subject matter is rather interesting. In fact this is the kind of book which many of your typical brick and mortar stores don't sell.Published 23 months ago by Lou
Startling accounts and interviews of German Jewish solders who served under the evil Third Reich, which targeted Jews for complete annihilation. Read morePublished on February 15, 2014 by Barry E. Tracy
How about this one for the WWII know-it-alls?
Very well-written/researched, brilliant in that it tells the 'Mischling' story---finally. Read more
If you have read the first 100 pages of this book, you have received about 90 percent of the content. However, I found that content to be fascinating. Read morePublished on February 21, 2012 by Michael Lewyn
These are many true stories told about half jewish and quarter jewish men who served in the third reich. Read morePublished on October 24, 2010 by Michael Dobey
Bryan Rigg makeds history come alive. This is a vital book on WW11 Germany. John logue BA History Ohio Stat 66Published on September 17, 2009 by John W. Logue
Matters dealt with in the volume have been well known for quite some time. But for me, the personal details discerned by this Author lent an almost incredulous aura to the... Read morePublished on September 13, 2009 by James E. Girzone
Once again Bryan Rigg has succeeded in presenting a book that details the actions and lives of men who, by clear definition of Nazi policy as established by the 1935 Nuremberg... Read morePublished on July 11, 2009 by Colin D. Heaton
Lives of Hitler's Jewish Soldiers provides a unique insight into a fascinating and, of course, tragic element of the Holocaust that is generally untold. Read morePublished on April 23, 2009 by Lawrence J. Burian