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Ratings and Book Reviews (2 10 star ratings
2 reviews
)

Overall rating

3.9 out of 5
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  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

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    A real eye opener!

    This was a real gut wrencher of a book written by a Dutch volunteer Waffen SS officer who served on the Eastern Front. The details of the barbaric Soviets was in keeping with previous reports but the evidence of Allied crimes was shocking. Mr. Vernon exposed the raw pain and suffering of the German civilians and their foreign friends after wars end. The lawlessness in the Soviet Zone was only slightly worse than the hatred and vengeful western zones. The numbers of the people killed and starved after 1945 is staggering.
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    Tough to review

    I love reading autobiographies, but how can you rate a book based on someone's actual experience? There is certainly value in reading this book, to get an account of how a Dutch man can justify his entire career in the SS, without any regrets whatsoever. The main argument he gives is that he believed the German army was protecting Europe from the communists, and that Europe could have lived peacefully under Nazi rule. His experience of the war seems to have been sheltered from the entire Dutch experience of living under Nazi rule, which I have heard first hand was absolutely terrible. The author never once says Hitler was anything short of brilliant, which shows the extent of the SS training and loyalty. My biggest problem with this book is that he strongly criticises the treatment of the German people and the SS soldiers in particular in the years following the war, claiming this mistreatment was unjustified and just pretty revenge, and called the Nuremberg trials a total sham. While he may have a worthy cause, which is to bring to light the many thousands of Germans who died after the war was over, his argument falls very flat due to one simple reason: He not once, in the entire book, acknowledges the Holocaust. It is not even mentioned. He complains bitterly about ex soldiers dying in Siberia, and how they don't deserve that treatment after fighting honorably but without seeing both sides, acknowledging the Nazi government slaughtered millions his argument has no weight.
10

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