- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 8 hours and 34 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Veronikas Research & Essay Service
- Audible.com Release Date: January 15, 2018
- Language: English
- ASIN: B078XL38T7
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Swastika and Scimitar: Brothers in Arms: Warwolves of the Iron Cross Audiobook – Unabridged
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They will never tell you that millions of non-Germans fought shoulder to shoulder with their German comrades in the Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS for a common cause: a world free of interest slavery and Bolshevik terror.
What a terrific book!
My only frustration was that the formatting for Kindle was disappointing. It didn't have a table of contents that allowed me to link back to different parts of the book. With a book like this, that would have been useful because the Forward has a bunch of background information about the Third Reich's dealings with Arab countries that I wanted to remind myself of as I read through Wimmer's story.
The translators did a good job adding pictures in line with the text, but they should have done more to make it work well on a Kindle. I borrowed the book as an Amazon Prime member but I'm reluctant to buy it if I cant jump around the different sections equally.
Wimmer's recount of his time as a covert agent of the Third Reich is phenomenal however, and I highly recommend this book.
The translators also add a lot of interesting background information, such as Stalin's scorched earth policy and his orders to dress partisans in German military garb and have them burn villages to the ground in an effort to turn opinion against the Germans.
Wimmer's story is the meat of the book and consists of 5 parts:
Part I: Family and Childhood--Franz Wimmer-Lamquet as a young kid meets Reinhardt Heydrich and volunteers for a mission in Africa to run a plantation in a former German colony then run by the British. His purpose will be to counter anti-German propaganda from the British.
Part II: My Time in East Africa--Wimmer runs the plantation and solves numerous tough problems, and makes good friends with the natives. He makes an enemy of a local NSDAP party leader (a guy named Troost) when he refused to participate in local Party activity. Heydrich had told Wimmer to not get involved in politics, so when Troost tried to recruit him he complained to Heydrich, who apparently came down on the NSDAP party member. When the war started, Troost named Wimmer a troublemaker to the British and Wimmer was arrested and repatriated to Germany. There are a bunch of great Africa stories here, and some depressing. For example how the British plantation owners would take advantage of the girls whose families worked on their plantation and a story about a white woman whose black lover was murdered because of a tryst. Funny stories include dealing with medicine men, and how he got his workers to use a latrine instead of relieving themselves in random places.
Part III--Deployment in Iraq--Lot's here, but the most interesting part in this chapter is when he has an arranged marriage to an Iraqi girl, and he asks if he will be violating any race laws. I think it is Heydrich who just laughs at him for his concern.
Part IV--Arabian Security Units--This is by far the best part of the book. Their travel across the Sahara with camels and the dust storms.
Part V--The Secret Agents Training Center "Kloster" and the Operations in North Africa--Also a good chapter. The most memorable part was how Wimmer lost soldiers because of Admiral Canaris' betrayal. It's also clear in this chapter how much Wimmer felt for his men. Arabs, Africans, Germans alike were all his comrades who believed their cause was a good one.
I hate writing reviews, but it bugged me that you can't even tell what the book is about from Amazon. I'll also say that the Appendices are filled with goodies, more history than memoir, which is what I had hoped to find originally anyway.