For at least one Jew in Nazi Germany, the way to avoid persecution was to join the army under an assumed Aryan identity. Others in the army who considered themselves Christian had their military careers ruined or compromised by the disastrous revelation of their part-Jewish descent.
In this intriguing work, the author, a military historian and former Marine officer, has collected the oral histories of Jews and part- Jews who served in the German armed forces during World War II. He presents his “heroes” in a candid and unbiased fashion. Did they have any qualms about fighting in support of Hitler while their relatives were in concentration camps or were otherwise threatened? No, they reasoned, how else could they have saved themselves? Several did, in fact, use their privileged position to help Jews in trouble.
Skillfully written and carefully researched, the book is absorbing reading. Its controversial quality suggests using it as a basis for discussion groups interested in moral problems. Bibliography, list of abbreviations, list of SS and Wehrmacht ranks, notes, prologue, sixtyfour photographs.