Kristallnacht: The Unleashing of the Holocaust

Anothy Read, Author, Anthony Read, Author, David Fisher, With Bedrick $10.95 (294p) ISBN 978-0-87226-237-9
When 17-year-old Herschel Grynszpan, a Jew, assassinated German diplomat Ernst vom Rath in Paris on November 7, 1938, his act set off an explosion of racial hatred and violence in Germany. Nazi propaganda minister Josef Goebbels seized on the incident as an opportunity to inflame anti-Semitic feelings: ``spontaneous'' demonstrations were organized, and on November 9-10 the Jews of Germany witnessed the initiation of the Holocaust in Kristallnacht (the ``night of broken glass'') as synagogues, community centers, shops and homes were looted and burned. Within a week the SS and Gestapo had begun transporting Jews to concentration camps. British historians Read and Fisher analyze the origins and development of German anti-Semitism, its exploitation by the Nazis and its implementation on Kristallnacht , and the international reaction that immediately followed, described here as ``mere squeaks of indignation.'' The book is essential reading for students of the Holocaust as the first comprehensive exploration of how the Nazis initially tested their anti-Jewish policies. Photos. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1990
Release date: 11/01/1990
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